Which Phillies team put out the best opening day lineup during the last decade?
Opening Day is right around the corner, so we’re breaking down the best Phillies lineups from the last decade.
Here’s what we’re looking at with these lineups: Who started, how did the opening day game go, and how did the season go in its entirety? We couldn’t just focus on how one game went, we had to look at the season as a whole for the offense and how things shook out over a 162 game season.
*TBOH co-editor Matt Rappa also contributed to this project
10. April 4, 2016
By far, the worst opening day lineup of the last decade was the 2016 lineup, which featured nine players who are no longer with the big league team just four years later.
- Cesar Hernandez, 2B
- Odubel Herrera, CF
- Maikel Franco, 3B
- Ryan Howard, 1B
- Carlos Ruiz, C
- Cedric Hunter, LF
- Peter Bourjos, RF
- Freddy Galvis, SS
- Jeremy Hellickson, P
The Phillies would score just two runs in the sixth inning thanks to a Freddy Galvis home run off now-closer Raisel Iglesias.
The lineup went 6-33 that day with four starters (Ryan Howard, Odubel Herrera, Peter Bourjos, and Cedric Hunter) each going hitless. Pinch-hitters (get this) Emmanuel Burriss and Darin Ruf also went 0-2 in their season debuts.
Jeremy Hellickson had a strong outing with six innings of three-hit, one unearned run baseball, but David Hernandez and James Russell would allow five runs in the eighth inning to blow the game.
This game was a tell-tale sign of what to expect from the 2016 Phillies.
While they improved by eight games from the year before, this year’s Phillies finished in fourth place with 71 wins. They had the third-fewest hits in baseball with just over 1,300, struck out 1,376 times, had 161 home runs, and hit just .240, the second-worst average in baseball.
Bourjos and Hunter are now trivia questions, because who could have possibly named those two if you asked who the opening day corner outfielders were in 2016? Ruiz and Howard have since retired, Hernandez and Franco signed one-year deals in the American League, and Herrera is in the minors after a domestic violence suspension.