For the 2023 Philadelphia Phillies, we all know that they possess the perfect combination of great hitting along with solid pitching. But how do they match up against the rest of the playoff teams in the league?
In a recent article by MLB.com, they decided to rank all of the teams that made the 2023 MLB postseason based on their lineups and pitching staff. In terms of the lineup, the Phillies were ranked surprisingly in the sixth spot among the twelve playoff teams. How is that even possible, with the likes of Trea Turner, Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber, J.T. Realmuto and Nick Castellanos stacking their everyday lineup? Not to mention the breakthrough seasons produced by both Alec Bohm and Bryson Stott as well.
Obviously, there is no argument that the Atlanta Braves are ranked No. 1, as their offense has been practically insane and unmatched by any other team in 2023. You could definitely have an argument that the Phillies are similar to or perhaps even better than the fourth-ranked Houston Astros. But they are definitely a lot better than the fifth-ranked Tampa Bay Rays, who missed some key players in their lineup leading to their quick postseason exit.
When it comes to pitching, plenty of more surprises can be found. The top two pitching staffs in the Milwaukee Brewers and the Toronto Blue Jays have already been eliminated from this year’s playoffs. The Phillies actually find themselves quite high on this list, sitting in fourth just behind the Minnesota Twins, while their NLDS opponents in the Braves rank down in eighth place. Their placing is backed up by their strong starting rotation anchored by co-aces Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola, along with a formidable bullpen that could match any of their opponents any day.
So what this means is that the Phillies currently have the best pitching staff in the National League among all the remaining playoff contenders. If they can do their part and shut down the top offensive team in the league in the Braves, while their offence does their part at the same time in jumping all over the Braves’ pitching as we saw in Game One of the NLDS, the Phillies could see themselves sailing right to the World Series.
Nevertheless, these rankings sure bring great optimism to the Phillies and their faithful as they continue to endure in their tough, grueling battle against the Braves in the NLDS.