2. Trea Turner
The Phillies fans showed up big time for their new shortstop as they displayed their unwavering support for Turner in the midst of his nightmarish season. On August 4, the Phillies fan gave a standing ovation to Turner despite his public struggles and he has responded. In 107 games up until August 4th, Turner slashed .235/.290/.657. In the 16 games since the ovations, he has a slash line of .365/.403/1.054. The biggest “trade deadline acquisition” the Phillies got was getting their All-Star shortstop to play up to his standards. Rob Thomson moved Turner down in the lineup to try and relieve some pressure but has since moved him back to the two-hole. This spot in the lineup is extremely important as Schwarber has been drawing walks at a historic pace and Harper and Castellanos have continued to hit. Not having a black hole or double play machine in the two spot has done wonders for the Phillies offense. His power is starting to come around and he continues to be a menace on the base paths. If Turner can continue his resurgence into the remaining weeks of the season and playoffs, this offense can be extremely dangerous.
3. Bryce Harper
As Bryce Harper goes, this Phillies team goes. As the emotional leader of this team, an “Important Phillies” list just simply has to have Harper on it. Harper came back from Tommy John surgery in record time and took a little while to look like the baseball mashing left-hander that we have been accustomed to. Although he was hitting for average, the power numbers were not quite where he wanted them to be. But since August 1st, Harper has hit six home runs and has raised his OPS from .787 to .848. In that time, he reached the minimum plate appearances to qualify for the batting average leaders and his .297 average has him seventh in the NL. Even more impressive, he has played first base for the first time in his career and has done it admirably. Rarely has he seemed overmatched fielding the position and has even made Gold Glove like plays. Harper playing first base opens up the DH spot for Schwarber which enables the Phillies to put a plus defender in left field and add more dimensions to the lineup with the likes of Cave, Rojas or Pache when he returns from injury. Harper’s willingness to play a new position and his ability to do it well enough provides this team with the flexibility that it has been seeking for over a year. Harper is the heart beat of the Phillies and they will go as far as he takes them.