Philadelphia Phillies: Five biggest surprises in 2017

MIAMI, FL - JULY 11: Pat Neshek
MIAMI, FL - JULY 11: Pat Neshek /
1 of 5
MIAMI, FL – JULY 11: Pat Neshek
MIAMI, FL – JULY 11: Pat Neshek /

Phillies baseball was made fun again thanks to the surprising efforts from these five players throughout the season

Phillies baseball was more disappointing than exciting in 2017, a year where many, including me, considered them a team that would play .500 baseball through the season.

While the .500 record is a distant thought, and perhaps a pipedream, several players proved their value towards the club in making them contenders beyond this year. Some we expected to contribute while others seemingly came out of nowhere.

Here are five players that surprised Phillies fans this season.

Pat Neshek

The addition of a 36-year-old submarine reliever for cash was seen as nothing more than a hail mary over the course of a quiet winter. The hail mary landed perfectly in the arms of general manager Patt Neshek, who flipped the All-Star for three prospects at the trade deadline.

Prior to being traded to Colorado, Neshek posted a 1.12 ERA in 40 games on his way to the midsummer classic in Miami. One of, if not the only, consistent arms in the Phillies bullpen this year, Neshek was a mentor to a young pitching staff and fan favorite thanks to his quirkiness and success.

Reeling in prospects J.D Hammer, Jose Gomez, and Alejandro Requena, Neshek did his job in Philadelphia. An afterthought turned into three prospects now working their way up through the organization.