After a disappointing 2020 campaign, most baseball experts believe that the Phillies can bounce back this season.
Joe Girardi is back as the Phillies manager, and there is still plenty of star power on this roster. Philadelphia just missed out on the playoffs in 2020, but they should be on the hunt throughout this season.
There are still some question marks on the pitching staff, but the Phillies should have a pretty potent offense. Girardi has proven that he can be a successful big league manager, and he will try to work his magic in Philadelphia.
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The Philadelphia Phillies finished the 2019 season with a record of 81-81.Girardi was brought in before the 2020 season, and there was plenty of optimism heading into the shortened season.
Unfortunately, the Phillies were unable to get anything going in the 60-game season, posting a record of 28-32. Philadelphia finished in third place in the National League East and failed to reach the MLB Playoffs.
The Phillies were great at home a season ago, posting a record of 19-13 at Citizens Bank Park. Unfortunately, the team went just 9-19 away from home, and they will have to play much better on the road in 2021.
Philadelphia had one of the best offenses in baseball a season ago, and it was able to bring back nearly all of their top bats.This offense should be a strength in 2021, but there were some holes left on the pitching staff.
The Phillies made a big trade in December to acquire Jose Alvarado from the Tampa Bay Rays. Alvarado has one of the best arms in baseball and should be a real upgrade on the pitching staff for the Phillies.
Philadelphia also reached a deal with free-agent Archie Bradley, and he will likely get the first shot at winning the closer role this season.
The Philadelphia Phillies have nearly the same odds at the sportsbook as they did when the betting lines opened, and that’s due to not really losing any significant talent. Philadelphia did lose a pair of solid veterans to free agency, and it’s unclear how much of an impact that will have.
Outfielder Jay Bruce is now a member of the New York Yankees, and he was solid for the Phillies in 2020, hitting six home runs in just over 30 games. Backup catcher Jonathan Lucroy has also moved on after he was brought in as some insurance at the end of 2020.
Pitching was not good for the Philadelphia Phillies during the 2020 season, especially away from Citizens Bank Park.The Phillies had a team ERA of over five and were the fifth-worst team in baseball in that category.
The bullpen was a big reason for that lofty ERA a season ago, but the starting rotation only had 20 quality starts in 60 games.Aaron Nola and the rest of the starting rotation will have to pitch much deeper into games this season.
The addition of Archie Bradley should fix some late-game problems for the Phillies, but the entire pitching staff will need to be much improved for the Phillies to make the playoffs.
The offense was not the problem for the Phillies in 2020, and this team should be one of the most potent offenses in the league again this season. Philadelphia scored 306 runs during the 2020 season, which was the fifth-highest total in baseball.
Bryce Harper, J.T. Realmuto, and Didi Gregorious carried the offense in 2020, and Philadelphia is looking for more production from the bottom part of the lineup. The Phillies play in a hitter-friendly stadium, and they should have another big year at the plate.
3 Key Players
Harper signed the massive contract before the 2019 season and did not look like himself for much of that season. That wasn’t the case in 2020 as the outfielder blasted 13 home runs and had an on-base percentage of .420.
If Harper has an MVP=type season in 2021, then the Phillies should be back in the playoffs this season. He is one of the best in baseball and can carry a team on a deep playoff run.
Aaron Nola went 5-5 with a 3.28 ERA a season ago, but he remains one of the best young pitchers in baseball. If Philadelphia is going to make the playoffs this season, then it will be Nola that sets the tone in the starting rotation.
Andrew McCutchen has not exactly delivered for the Philadelphia Phillies since joining the team, but he is still a former MVP Award winner in the National League. Harper and J.T. Realmuto are the two biggest bats in the lineup, but McCutchen has a chance to push the Phillies over the edge.
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The Phillies will have one of the toughest schedules in baseball in 2021 simply by being in the National League East Division. The Atlanta Braves, New York Mets, and Washington Nationals are all World Series contenders, and the Miami Marlins were a playoff team a season ago.
The sportsbook has the Philadelphia Phillies at +3400 to win the World Series, which puts them in the bottom half of the league. Philadelphia has decent odds of +750 to win the National League East, but they still trail the three teams mentioned above.
Sportsbooks have set the over/under for regular-season wins for Philadelphia at 81.5, and it’s going to take a better effort than that to reach the postseason.