Philadelphia Phillies: Grading every player at the All-Star break

May 31, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Seranthony Dominguez (58) delivers a pitch against the San Francisco Giants during the ninth inning at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports
May 31, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Seranthony Dominguez (58) delivers a pitch against the San Francisco Giants during the ninth inning at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports /
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Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Ranger Suarez
Apr 27, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Ranger Suarez (55) pitches during the second inning against the Colorado Rockies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: John Geliebter-USA TODAY Sports /

Grading more Philadelphia Phillies pitchers, including the big boys

Brad Hand: B. His numbers are better than his usefulness. Essentially a spot left-hander now.

Corey Knebel: B-minus. The problem with Knebel’s B-minus performance is that he was the assumed closer at the beginning of the year even if the Phillies didn’t quite say that. Knebel’s ERA is 3.03, and he’s likely to get other closing chances, as he did July 9. Unclear value.

Nick Nelson: B-minus. Nelson is part of the generally improving Phillies bullpen, and after a disastrous four-earned-run performance June 12 and a couple of stumbles in his next appearances, he has given up only one earned run since June 19 in six appearances and has won two games. Nelson’s unlikely to stick with the team, but who knows? He’s arbitration eligible in 2024.

Aaron Nola (starter): A-minus. Stop me if you’ve heard this joke before – Aaron Nola’s run support from the Philadelphia Phillies. The right-hander’s career problem plods along, saddling him with a 6-7 won-lost record despite a WHIP of 0.908, a career-best by .067, even better than his ’18 mark, when he was a Cy Young contender. The pitcher’s strikeout to walk figure also leads MLB and has jumped to 8.56 to 1. Still, Nola has thrown up a stinker here and there; when he comes unglued, it’s usually between the fourth and sixth innings.

Jo Jo Romero: Incomplete. Raise your hand if you knew Romero was on the Phillies active roster? Sir, in the back, you’re lying. He’s pitched one inning at the MLB level this year.

Cristopher Sanchez (MiLB): B. The useful spot starter this season, Sanchez has appeared in 10 games total (23.2 innings), posting a 1-1 record and 1.056 WHIP.

Ranger Suarez (starter): B-minus. The left-hander is working through a modest sophomore slump as a starter, and just spent time on the injured list with lower back spasms. 7-5 won-lost record. A good return from the IL July 16 (five scoreless, walk-less innings).

Zack Wheeler (starter): A. The staff ace, Wheeler is signed through 2024. He currently has a WHIP within spitting distance of Nola’s, a better ERA (2.89) than Nola’s, and an 8-5 record.

On to the alleged offensive juggernaut the Philadelphia Phillies assembled to back these pitchers…