For the first time since 2011, the Philadelphia Phillies are 17 games over .500.
It has been 11 years since the Philadelphia Phillies last made the postseason. It has also been 11 years since the last time the Phillies were 17 games over the .500 mark.
That’s right. The Phillies have not had a record like this in more than a decade.
The 2011 Phillies team featured a lineup that included Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Shane Victorino, and Raúl Ibañez, among others. The rotation, meanwhile was unforgettable — as it touted the names of pitchers Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, and Roy Oswalt.
That team finished the season an astounding 42 games over .500 — and a final record of 102-60. They would go on to have an unfortunate National League Division Series finish — falling to the eventual-World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals. Perhaps the most agonizing part of the loss was Ryan Howard rupturing his Achilles tendon when making the final out.
The 2011 Phils had a phenomenal regular season, but ultimately came up short in the postseason. How do the 2022 Phillies compare to that year’s team so far?
Under interim manager Rob Thomson, the team has reached 17 games over .500 after its Saturday win against the Pittsburgh Pirates — Bryce Harper’s second game back since late June. The 2011 Phillies reached that many games over .500 by mid-June.
This year’s club got off to a very slow start under Joe Girardi. However, it has improved to a 72-55 record — despite many injuries.
While the 2022 Phillies have had a solid performance from their rotation, the 2011 rotation was one of the best in Major League history — at least on paper. The lineups, meanwhile, vary quite a bit. The 2011 club had aging superstars already at or on the downside of their prime. The 2022 Phils sport a much younger lineup — with five of their everyday players younger than 30. Both offenses feature pop and the ability to torture opposing pitching.
It is fun to look back and reminisce about the last time we enjoyed “Red October” baseball. The 2022 squad is the first team since then to really give a sense of hope to fans. Hopefully, by November, this topic can be revisited and the 2022 Phillies have a better ending to the season than the talented 2011 squad.