Phillies: Breaking down the NL East and how the Phils stack up

Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
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Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

2) Philadelphia Phillies (2019: 81-81, 4th Place)

The Action Network Odds to win division: +320
The Action Network Wins over/under: 85.5
PECOTA win projection: 77-85
PECOTA Chances to make the playoffs: 8.9%

Projecting Starting Lineup (based off Bryce Turner’s projections):

  1. Andrew McCutchen
  2. Jean Segura
  3. Bryce Harper
  4. Rhys Hoskins
  5. Didi Gregorius
  6. J.T. Realmuto
  7. Scott Kingery
  8. Adam Haseley

Projected Rotation:

  1. Aaron Nola
  2. Zack Wheeler
  3. Jake Arrieta
  4. Vince Velasquez
  5. Zach Eflin

One word to summarize the Phillies 2019: unsatisfying. The signing of Bryce Harper was supposed to bring new life into the organization, but injuries and underwhelming performances led to a sub-par season.

Yet, there were plenty of positives: J.T. Realmuto had his best season as a professional, Scott Kingery took great strides in his development, and Adam Haseley showed up large when he was called upon. Now, the return of Andrew McCutchen, the signing of the powerful Didi Gregorious, and the hopeful return-to-form of Rhys Hoskins will be a devastating lineup for any rotation.

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The question marks to begin last season surrounds the Phillies’ rotation again in 2020: who is going to step up? The organization brought in a valuable starter in Zack Wheeler, one of the top free agent pitchers on the market. Yet after that, Jake Arrieta struggled with consistency, Vince Velasquez grinded every outing to get to the sixth inning, Zach Eflin succumbed to injury again, and Nick Pivetta failed to live up to his high expectations. If the Phillies’ rotation can even be just slightly better in 2020 (looking at you, Aaron Nola), they’ll be extremely competitive in the division.

Just like I don’t believe the Mets’ hype, I don’t understand the Phillies’ hate. This team won 81 games with a plethora of injuries and they upgraded positions of need. They will push for a division title, and will be firmly in the Wild Card consideration.

My Prediction: 90-72