With guns blazing, the Phillies will bring a sense of urgency to the final month of this 162, and the faithful will see how far the second-half trades of general manager Matt Klentak will elevate them toward their first postseason.
While some Philadelphia Phillies fans blame the offense, others see tired youngsters at the bottom of the rotation, who are approaching their career highs for innings pitched. But this squad will challenge our loyalty and patience with another wrinkle or two before season’s end.
"IN OTHER WORDS: “Panic is not an effective long-term organizing strategy.” – Starhawk"
With the final weeks upon us, the Phils appear on a downward trajectory with a 7-14 mark beginning in Phoenix on Aug. 6. However, they are 5-9 since Wilson Ramos joined the team on Aug. 15 and 3-4 with him in the lineup instead of 2-5 with Jorge Alfaro.
A bright spot from another acquisition is present as well: Asdrubal Cabrera has seven hits in his last 14 at-bats. Meanwhile, Rhys Hoskins is four for 10 with three walks, two homers and two RBIs, while Roman Quinn is averaging .350 over 26 games. Three starters?
As for the competition, the Arizona Diamondbacks picked up third baseman Eduardo Escobar to add some power. And they acquired lefty reliever Jake Diekman for the back end of the bullpen. But while Escobar has been productive, Diekman has had four poor outings out of 10.
On the other hand, the Colorado Rockies only promoted Matt Holliday as a bench bat after a brief MiLB stint. Originally, Colorado’s pitching strategy was young starters and a pen stocked with some free agents. Results: growing pains rotation-wise and questionable signings.
The Los Angeles Dodgers won the Manny Machado sweepstakes, while they still lacked setup men for Kenley Jansen. Unfortunately, they had only picked up John Axford, and he had three outings before a comebacker disabled him. And Jansen returned from a DL stint himself to then toss four straight clunkers.
In the standings, the spread between the Diamondbacks, Rockies, Phillies, and Dodgers is two games. So, their records against each other and other contenders at home or on the road might be critical. And this article examines those details.