Phillies: History rhymes 2020 with 1980

PHILADELPHIA, PA - CIRCA 1980: Manager Dallas Green #46 of the Philadelphia Phillies argues with an umpire during an Major League Baseball game circa 1980 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Green managed for the Phillies from 1979-81. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - CIRCA 1980: Manager Dallas Green #46 of the Philadelphia Phillies argues with an umpire during an Major League Baseball game circa 1980 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Green managed for the Phillies from 1979-81. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 5
Next
Phillies
Harper is gearing up for his second Phillies campaign. Photo by M. Brown/Getty Images. /

Matching forecasts:         

For the 1979 Phillies, the final numbers were 65-67 under skipper Danny Ozark, 19-11 under Green, and 84-78 total. And they were behind Pittsburgh (98-64), the Montreal Expos (95-65) and the St. Louis Cardinals (86-76). A fourth-place club?

Like the ’20 squad, the prediction for the ’80 Phils was fourth place because they “obviously” were no better than that. Yes, it is also an easy call for these red pinstripes preparing for the upcoming campaign.

To paraphrase Larry Bowa during the champagne-celebrated victory over Kansas City, they –fourth place, adios– were his rebuked words for their preseason forecast. Maybe, Andrew McCutchen can offer a similar sentiment if the red pinstripes can bottle lightning.

Approaching Opening Day at March’s end, Girardi’s new crew finished ’19 under Gabe Kapler with an 81-81 record. They were behind the Atlanta Braves (97-65), the Washington Nationals (93-69) and the New York Mets (86-76). Yes, the standings resemble 1979’s.

The Fightins were a fourth-place team in 2019, and the easy prediction is fourth again. Expert’s translation: They finished fourth, they’re a fourth-place squad, and the forecast is fourth place: Yeah, it’s so easy anybody could do it.

"ON THE OTHER HAND: Undercover economist Tim Harford says forecasts are like Pringles – ‘Nobody thinks that there’s any great virtue in them but offered the fleeting pleasure of consuming them, we find it hard to resist.’"