I will be the first to admit, never in a million years did I think at the beginning of this MLB season the Phillies would be doing as well as they are. Even though they are second to last in the division and have played some pretty weak teams over the past few weeks, they’re not simply laying down. This is a group of players, much like the Sixers this past season, who almost always try to fight until the end.
At 19-26 and seven games behind the Nationals, amazingly enough, this team has been fun to watch from time to time. Ryan Howard is actually on pace to hit 36 homeruns the season. Aaron Harang is pitching so well that fans are clamoring for a trade in the near future. Maikel Franco has given the offense a bit of a spark and kept the batting component of games interesting. It’s not all doom and gloom.
Although, the depth of starting pitching and watching the complete and utter baseball demise of Chase Utley has been depressing to say the least. Every now and then fielding is questionable. There are times when we watch a game, and after a play we all collectively say, “well, those are the Phillies we know.” Then we shake our heads.
But overall, it has not been a horrific season. Do I still think this team can lose 100 games this year as I predicted before Opening Day? Absolutely. It is still early and whether or not Harang and Cole Hamels are dealt remains to be seen. If both are traded at some point, this team will rack up a significant amount of losses. Let’s just make sure we keep that in the back of our minds. It can and will probably become more of a challenge for this team to win games mid- and late-season.
In the meantime, let’s keep enjoying what we are seeing from this Phillies team. As of today, teams that have as many or fewer wins than the Phillies are the Marlins, Rockies, Reds, Brewers, White Sox Red Sox, A’s, Blue Jays, and Indians. Ryne Sandberg is doing all he can with the talent that he was provided after being named the manager. It has been a short tenure for him, so let’s give him the benefit of the doubt as we move forward. For now, let’s give the players the benefit of the doubt as well since there is some level of enjoyment in watching, thus far.