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This is a crucial offseason for the Philadelphia Phillies. They are currently sans General Manager, and after watching Andy MacPhail’s press conference the other day, I have no idea when they plan on hiring one (please hire Erik Neander). Let the record show that I am available.

I want to start by saying I’m thrilled the Phillies spent $330M two offseasons ago to get Bryce Harper, but outside of that move, they’ve done just about nothing since then to show they’re serious about competing. They are terrified of the luxury tax. They have neglected the bullpen for far too long…


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Cheryl Pursell

It’s come to my attention that an increasing number of Phillies fans are writing off Zach Eflin. It doesn’t take too much time on Phillies Twitter to see fans labeling Eflin a number 4 or 5 starter, claiming he’s terrible, and clamoring for another arm for the rotation.

I would argue that it’s far too early to have your mind made up on a pitcher like Eflin. He’s only 26 years old and this is just his third year as a full-time starter in the Phillies’ rotation. …


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CHARLES LECLAIRE/USA TODAY SPORTS

Thirteen days ago the Phillies were a dumpster fire. Coming off their fifth loss in as many games, the Phillies were 9–14 and, due to this shortened season, their playoff hopes were dwindling by the second. They were getting virtually no production from guys not named Bryce or J.T. and they were employing a bullpen full of players who, I can only imagine, thought throwing balls and allowing runs was their sole purpose.

It was after that loss to the Braves that Bryce Harper said the team needed to go on a run and win nine of their next ten…


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Jack Flaherty was nearly unhittable after the All Star break in 2019. (Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI)

Jack Flaherty’s 2019 campaign was a tale of two pitchers.

Before the All Star game on July 19, Flaherty was a really poor, below average starter. Flaherty started 18 games and tossed 97 innings in the first half of the season. In those 18 starts, he posted a 4.64 ERA, 4.74 FIP, 1.23 WHIP, and a 110 ERA-. He also struck out 107 batters.

ERA- is the pitcher’s version of wRC+, where 100 is average and one point above or below 100 is seen as one percentage point above or below league average. …


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Luis Severino (Image courtesy of Brad Penner/USA Today Sports)

Every year, around this time, MLB Network does their Top 10 Right Now list for each position, including starting pitchers. This year, Luis Severino wasn’t on any of the lists I saw, which would have been inexcusable just six months ago, as he was dominating for the entire first half of the season. However, in the second half of the season, Severino was a complete shell of himself — a nightmare every time he took the mound. So it’s really no wonder why he hasn’t been included on any of these lists. He needs to earn his way back on.


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J.T. Realmuto (Image courtesy of Jason Vinlove/USA Today Sports)

The Deal

Phillies receive: C J.T. Realmuto

Marlins receive: RHP Sixto Sanchez, C Jorge Alfaro, LHP Will Stewart, International bonus pool money

The Significance

The Phillies just traded for the best catcher in baseball and did so by giving up their top pitching prospect and a promising young catcher — it’s pretty significant.

Giving up Sanchez is a bit of a tough pill to swallow. He’s a 20-year-old flame thrower who has been the Phillies’ top prospect for the past few seasons. A lot of optimists like to refer to him as “Pedro 2.0.”

As we all know, prospects are anything but a sure…


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Jackie Bradley Jr. (Image courtesy of Fantrax)

I feel like I’ve been saying this for a few years now: Jackie Bradley Jr. could have a breakout year this season.

It’s easy to forget about Bradley, considering he resides in the best outfield in baseball, surrounded by dangerous bats like J.D. Martinez, Andrew Benintendi, and reigning AL MVP Mookie Betts.

It’s also safe to assume that Bradley has served as more of an afterthought due to his up-and-down career thus far.

From 2015-’16, Bradley was rather productive, slashing .262/.345/.489, hitting 36 combined home runs, and posting an impressive 119 wRC+ (where 100 is league average) and a .355…

Mitch Lord

Baseball, analytics, strategy, stories.

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