Looking back on 5 Philadelphia Phillies predictions for 2023 and seeing what we hit and missed

Looking back a one's preseason predictions can be especially harrowing when the team involved is the Philadelphia Phillies.

Wild Card Series - Miami Marlins v Philadelphia Phillies - Game Two
Wild Card Series - Miami Marlins v Philadelphia Phillies - Game Two / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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Prediction Number 4

“Matt Vierling, who basically platooned with Brandon Marsh after the trade deadline this past season, will be traded at the coming season’s trade deadline for an unknown need at this point. Marsh will become the everyday Phillies center fielder….”

Vierling was, in fact, traded to Detroit, but this occurred January 7, two days after my prediction, not at the trade deadline. Also, while Brandon Marsh did play a fair amount of center field for Philadelphia this past season, by the end of the season, it became fairly apparent that rookie Johan Rojas will be the Fightin’s regular center fielder moving forward.

While Marsh is a good outfielder, Rojas is a superior defender and a surprisingly effective hitter.

Thus, the technical term for this two-part prediction is “a mess.”

Prediction Number 5

“Aaron Nola will finally win the NL Cy Young at the age of 30 after two top four finishes since 2018….”

Sheese, anyone who looked at the back of Nola’s baseball card might have done better with this one since it is fairly obvious that Nola might well follow up a season with an excellent ERA (like 2022 — 3.25), with an ERA over 4.00. Nola’s ERA this season was 4.46, and Cy Young awards never go to pitchers with such ERAs.

More encouraging to Phillies fans than this wildly wrong prediction, however, is that the number two starter has been pitching much better late in this season than he has sometimes done in the past. His seven-shutout innings October 4 to push the Marlins from the current postseason were emblematic, perhaps, of another deep Phillies run towards the World Series.

But who knows? This prediction game is very, very iffy.