Why the Philadelphia Phillies Must Prove Themselves this Season

Since their World Series victory in 2008, the Philadelphia Philles have had a very tough time getting back into winning form. The club has only had 3 regular season records above .500, 3 postseason appearances, and a drought of 8 seasons in a row without a post season appearance. After struggling over the past few seasons the Philadelphia Phillies are finally ready to see some success. Over the off season the club fixed some major issues and added a lot of depth on both offense and defense. With the new roster and additions the club made this off season, there is no reason for failure or another let down season.

One of the biggest moves over the off season for the Philadelphia Phillies was picking up star pitcher Zack Wheeler on a 5 year 118 million dollar deal. Coming off a strong season with the Mets in 2019, Wheeler had a 3.96 ERA, 195 strikeouts, and a win-loss percentage of .579 with 31 games played. Going into the off season the Phillies knew they must add pitching to a group that had struggled over these past few years, and they did just that with the addition of Zack Wheeler. At the age of 30, Wheeler has spent only 5 season in the majors and has consistently got better every season. Last season Wheeler pitcher 195.1 innings while only allowing 50 walks and 22 home runs. He is a guy who has shined over the past few season and has no signs of stopping, which is great for a pitching staff that needed much improvement. Plugging Wheeler in with Jake Arrieta and Aaron Nola adds another solid starter and a lot more depth to the pitching staff.

Another addition that greatly boosts the Philadelphia Phillies is the addition of short stop Didi Gregorius on a 1 year 14 million dollar deal. Last season the 8 year veteran had a batting average of .238, 61 RBIs, and 77 hits with 324 at bats. Although this past season wasn't his best hitting performance, his defensive abilities more than make up for it. In 2019 Gregorious had 93 putouts with 181 assists, while only totaling 6 errors in 80 games played. Although his numbers look down for last season, Didi was injured and came off Tommy Johnson Surgery, which repairs an elbow ligament. Not only will the addition of Gregorius just add a solid player in himself, but also replace other players who struggled last season. Didi will most likely take over the reigns at shortstop and move Jean Segura to 3rd base. This will force Maikel Franco to the bench to be a solid role player or pinch hitter after a tough season in 2019.

With the additions of Gregorius and Wheeler this Phillies team looks better than ever. These players not only add their own talents, but add so much more depth to a team that's backups have failed to shine. Not only have the off season additions given Philles better chances at a play off run, but out fielder Andrew McCutchen is returning from his ACL injury last season. McCutchen has been one of the better outfielders over the past few years and when he went down last season is when everything seemed to fall apart for such a promising ball club. His reunion with the team this season will dramatically increase the Phillies opportunity for success based on the results of the team without him.

We also can not forget how much of a disaster Gabe Kapler was for this organization. Last year when Kapler was around he seamed to turned the whole organization against each other. The staff and players were very unhappy with the way things were with Kapler because of his questionable decision making and remarks. Because of all the trouble Kapler had caused, his absence will benefit the Phillies mentally and physically. Joe Girardi will bring a new, positive attitude to this ball club and a veteran presence, which this young team needs. Bringing in a new manager was a very smart decision at this point in time for the Phillies.

With the new players and everyone healthy the Philadelphia Phillies look absolutely stacked on and off the field. There is no reason for another failed season or lack of a play off appearance. If the Phillies fail to prove themselves this season after getting an even better team, the organization could be headed downhill. With all the star power they currently have, I would not be surprised if the staff and fans were on board for a rebuild or to blow up the team and try again later. At this moment time it doesn't look like it, but hopefully baseball comes back this year because this was the Philadelphia Phillies chance for a successful year and a playoff run.

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