Sep 07, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee (33) delivers to the plate during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Phillies Pre-Season Playoff Odds Are Really Helpful


February 18, 2013; Clearwater, FL, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cliff Lee (33) poses for a picture during photo day at Bright House Networks Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

I’m no mathematician, nor will I ever claim to be. So I won’t pretend to understand how the really smart people at Baseball Prospectus and Las Vegas odds-makers come up with their odds on who will either make the playoffs or win the World Series in 2013.

All I know is, the Phils have some work to do.

According to Baseball Prospectus, the Phils’ have a 28.6% chance of making the playoffs in 2013, putting them third in the NL East behind the Nationals and the Braves. It also puts them 8th in the National League:

Los Angeles Dodgers       80.3%

Cincinnati Reds                  78.3%

Washington Nationals     67.9%

San Francisco Giants       43.3%

St. Louis Cardinals            39.3%

Arizona Diamondbacks  37.1%

Atlanta Braves                    35.6%

Phillies                                   28.6%

New York Mets                   25.8%

Milwaukee Brewers           18.3%

Pittsburgh Pirates              17.0%

Chicago Cubs                        12.5%

San Diego Padres                 9.5%

Colorado Rockies                4.8%

Miami Marlins                      1.7%

LOL the Miami Marlins by the way.

Baseball Prospectus also has the Phillies winning exactly the same number of games they did last year, finishing 81-81, giving them a 14.7% chance of winning the NL East.

It is interesting to note that the publication does not predict any Major League team getting to 90 wins, with only one team finishing below 70 (Houston Astros). Despite the disparity of payrolls in baseball, there does not appear to be any juggernaut teams in the Majors, despite the mega-money being spent by the Dodgers, Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies and others.

Meanwhile, the odds-makers in Vegas have the Phils looking a little better, giving them 18/1 odds to win the World Series. Only the Dodgers (8/1), Nats (8/1), Braves (12/1), Giants (12/1), and Reds (14/1) have better odds in the National League than the Phillies.

As always… Vegas, baby. Vegas.

What does all this mean?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Sure, the teams ahead of the Phils in Baseball Prospectus’ rankings do look like they could be better than the Phils (although I would argue Arizona probably is getting a bit too much love at the moment), but as the Oakland A’s and Baltimore Orioles showed last year, preseason predictions mean squat.

Still, it’s a fair analysis of where the teams stack up as full squad spring training sessions are set to begin this week.

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