Zack Wheeler and the Phillies
Last spring, Zack Wheeler debuted a revamped pitching style, propelling him to an outstanding season highlighted by a 3.61 ERA and 212 strikeouts, earning him notable consideration for the Cy Young award. 

As the 2024 season's camp unfolds, Wheeler has his sights set on a potential contract extension that could solidify his future in Philadelphia for years to come. 

During discussions with reporters at camp on Wednesday, Wheeler confirmed the initiation of extension talks, marking an early stage in negotiations. This development aligns with prior reporting in November, underscoring the organization's prioritization of extending Wheeler's tenure with the team. 

Entering the final year of his five-year, $118 million deal, this season represents a pivotal moment for the 33-year-old right-hander. Since his arrival as a free agent before the 2020 season, Wheeler has emerged as a cornerstone for the Phillies, making 101 starts over four seasons with an impressive 43-25 record and a stellar 3.06 ERA. His postseason performances further validate his value, boasting a remarkable 2.42 ERA across 63 1/3 innings and a minuscule 0.73 WHIP. 

In a parallel scenario, Aaron Nola encountered contract uncertainties a year ago, entering the final year of his deal. However, negotiations with the organization stalled last spring, leading to a pause in discussions until the offseason, when he and the club reached a seven-year, $172 million agreement in November. 

Based on published reports and Wheeler's comments Wednesday, it appears he's not inclined to impose a deadline on discussions, leaving room for ongoing dialogue. 

It's likely Wheeler is looking for a deal that averages out to around $40 million a year. 

Other Notes 
The Phillies on Wednesday announced an agreement with right-handed pitcher Spencer Turnbull for the 2024 season. To accommodate Turnbull on the 40-man roster, right-handed pitcher McKinley Moore has been designated for assignment, as confirmed by Phillies President of Baseball Operations David Dombrowski. 

Turnbull, aged 31, made seven starts with the Detroit Tigers in 2023, tallying 24 strikeouts over 31.0 innings. Despite a setback due to Tommy John surgery that sidelined him for the entirety of the 2022 season, Turnbull made history with the Tigers on May 18, 2021, by pitching the eighth no-hitter in franchise history against the Seattle Mariners. He recorded nine strikeouts and issued two walks in the first complete game of his career. Drafted by the Tigers in the second round of the 2014 MLB Draft, the 6-foot-3 native of Demopolis, Alabama, boasts experience from 61 major league appearances, including 60 starts, with a career ERA of 4.55 and 280 strikeouts, all earned during his tenure with Detroit. 

Turnbull has demonstrated remarkable control, surrendering only 24 home runs across 302.1 innings pitched. Notably, among 93 American League pitchers with at least 300 innings pitched between 2018 and 2023, Turnbull's HR/9.0 IP ratio of 0.71 ranks second.

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