4 players Phillies fans are losing patience with

Which Phillies players need to step up their game soon before frustration boils over?
Philadelphia Phillies backup catcher Garrett Stubbs
Philadelphia Phillies backup catcher Garrett Stubbs / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages
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The 2024 MLB season has been quite the revelation for the Philadelphia Phillies so far. Almost everything appears to be firing on all cylinders for the Phillies, whether it be the offense, the defense, the pitching or the coaching. You name it.

They have posted a 34-14 record and sit atop the entire major leagues. They also lead the NL East division by 5.0 games over the arch-rival Atlanta Braves.

Amidst all of the great things that have been happening for the Phillies to date, it's easy to forget that some of their players still have some struggles and things to work out. Johan Rojas and Nick Castellanos both had horrendous starts, during which many called for reduced playing time. However, with patience, they both slowly turned things around and have begun to make contributions in recent weeks.

4 players Phillies fans are losing patience with

On the other hand, a few still have yet to turn the corner despite now being a quarter into the regular season. With some of their struggles intensifying by the day, it has drawn the ire of some of the Phillies’ fanbase.

Let's take a look at four Phillies players who need to pick up their game soon before the fans lose patience with them.

Whit Merrifield

After being one of the team’s biggest offseason signings, veteran utilityman Whit Merrifield has certainly disappointed in a Phillies uniform thus far in 2024. He gave the club high hopes during spring training, heading into the season with a .405 batting average and a 1.143 OPS, with seven runs scored, six doubles, two home runs and seven RBI in 16 games. The ability to play both the infield and outfield provided the Phillies with multiple options for deploying Merrifield.

In the regular season, the 35-year-old has been a far cry from what was expected (subscription required). In 25 games, Merrifield has hit a measly .188 with a .552 OPS, 10 runs scored, three doubles, two home runs, four RBI and four stolen bases. To put things into perspective, that would mean 13 home runs and 26 RBI of offensive production over the course of a 162-game schedule, which is just not good enough. 

One of the most clutch hitters for the Toronto Blue Jays last season, Merrifield has been anything but that in 2024. In 2023, he batted .296 with a .763 OPS with runners in scoring position (RISP). This season, he has been absolutely dreadful in such situations, hitting just .130 with a .405 OPS with just two RBI in 23 at-bats.

To add insult to injury, Merrifield falls to a .067 batting average and .243 OPS over 15 at-bats when hitting with RISP with two outs. At this rate, it may become difficult for the Phillies to include him in the regular lineup, but at the same time, he can’t get any better just riding the bench. As a result, they will need to find a solution soon and quickly before their biggest addition in the offseason becomes a total bust.