Phillies’ Race with Atlanta for Third Place

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If Buchholz Has a Comeback Season, the Phillies Will Have a Decent Rotation. Photo by Evan Habeeb - USA TODAY Sports.

If Buchholz Has a Comeback Season, the Phillies Will Have a Solid Rotation. Photo by Evan Habeeb – USA TODAY Sports.

Before Opening Day arrives, February kicks off baseball anew and fans locally will enjoy future regulars, while veteran pitchers and hitters round into shape for the 2017 Philadelphia Phillies.


The Offseason’s Influence:  

While most businesses frequently have meetings regarding their competition, those industry rivals are making changes in their strategy to flourish as well.

During the winter, both franchises acquired experienced players to reinforce their rebuilding effort, except with different reasons. The Atlanta Braves augmented their 25-man roster for the opening of their new ballpark. They want a competitive club for their first campaign there. On the other hand, the Phillies picked up stopgaps to establish a winning attitude with an improved record, while their top prospects develop with the Triple-A Lehigh Valley IronPigs.

For this summer, where will the Phils finish is the question this week from Double D, a poster from another site. Well, both organizations will strive for third place along with the Miami Marlins. But higher is a big if.

Double D, when it comes to Atlanta’s five-man staff in the National League, they were 14th with a 4.87 ERA, while the Phils had a 4.41 ERA for ninth place. But the Braves added Bartolo Colon, R.A. Dickey and Jaime Garcia on one-year contracts to fill three spots in their rotation. That will help the team in the win column, but what will it cost? $32.5 million.


  • Colon, 43.5: 191 2/3 Inn., 15-8, a 3.43 ERA, a 2.9 fWAR and a 1.21 WHIP.
  • Dickey, 42: 169 2/3 Inn.,10-15, a 4.46 ERA, a 1.0 fWAR and a 1.37 WHIP.
  • Garcia, 30.5: 171 2/3 Inn., 10-13, a 4.67 ERA, a 1.2 fWAR and a 1.37 WHIP.
  • Buchholz, 32.5: 139 1/3 Inn., 8-10, a 4.78 ERA, a 0.5 fWAR and a 1.33 WHIP.

For the Philadelphia Phillies, the trade for Clay Buchholz will reunite him in mid-February with Bob McClure, a former pitching coach in Boston; and in two weeks McClure and Buchholz will begin studying film of his successful mechanics from seasons past. Then, they’ll go to the bullpen and work on consistency. Yes, if you are nearby, you’d hear McClure’s gruff reminder to Buchholz regarding his windup. Don’t drop your arm!

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