Will the Phillies manage to get through these stretches of their schedule?
Unlike Eagles football, we won’t be counting the wins and losses of the Phillies 162 game schedule. Can we give a general guess at how many wins they’ll have by October? Sure, but the baseball season is such a grind there’s no way to go game by game.
What we can do is pick out the toughest stretches of the 2020 Phillies schedule and where they’ll need to pull out some extra wins to make the playoffs.
One of the biggest tests Joe Girardi’s squad will face comes in May when they play the Dodgers six times in nine days with a home series versus the Cardinals wedged in-between.
Los Angeles is poised to make the playoffs for a seventh consecutive year and reach the World Series for the third time in four years. They just got a whole lot better by acquiring Mookie Betts in a blockbuster deal with the Red Sox, and they are always looking to improve no matter how good they are.
It’ll be a blessing to avoid seeing Walker Buehler or Clayton Kershaw twice, but unfortunately, it’s likely the case. Even if they do, the Dodgers can throw out David Price or young stars such as Dustin May.
That Cardinals series on the road isn’t a cakewalk either with the 91 win Cardinals coming back and ready to fight in a tough National League Central. The franchise has won no fewer than 83 games since 2009 and returns with Paul Goldschmidt and Kolten Wong powering the offense.
If the Phillies can get through the Dodger six game gauntlet with a .500 record and steal a game from the Cardinals, they’ll take it for sure.
But the Phillies worst stretch of the schedule is their nine game road trip in 10 games. After playing an early home game against the Padres, the Phillies have to fly to Seattle, Houston, and Washington with only one day off in-between After that they get the All-Star break to decompress and get ready for the second half.
Two teams that combined to win 120 games last year (Washington and Houston) and a quick turnaround and flight to Seattle isn’t ideal, especially with so few off-days. The times are also messed up, not just with the timezones, but each time starting at least one game at a different time.
If the Phillies can manage to stay afloat through those stretches, they’ll be in good shape to make the playoffs.