The 2021 Phillies season is in full swing. Through the 23 games that the Phils have played they hold a record of 11-12 and are third place in the National League East. The Phillies‘ play thus far has been unpredictable. In some games, they are on fire in the hitting and pitching department while other games are the complete opposite. The beginning of this season shows that this campaign could be interesting for the Phillies. They started out red hot in the first few games of the season, however, after their red hot start they presumed to cool off and started losing winnable ball games.
2021 Phillies: The Positives
There have been a good amount of positives that we have seen throughout the Phillies this season. Despite the losing record, the Phillies offense has looked relatively well. For instance, as of April 28th, Bryce Harper has a batting average of .328, .452 on-base percentage, .632 slugging percentage, an OPS of 1.038. Harper has also hit six home runs, which are near the top of the league, he has also added 10 RBIs this season. A big surprise this season is how well Rhys Hoskins is playing. Hoskins has a batting average of .253, .292 on base percentage, a slugging percentage of .593 and an OPS of .885. Hoskins is also tied for the league lead in home runs with eight, which has been huge for the 2021 Phillies.
Another player that has been hitting well is catcher J.T. Realmuto. The Phillies catcher is batting with a .319 batting average, a .415 on-base percentage, a slugging percentage of .493, and an OPS of .907. In addition, he has hit two home runs and 10 RBIs. Overall solid numbers for Realmuto to start off this season.
In the pitching department, the starting pitching hasn’t been that bad. Aaron Nola is reminding the league that he is a top 10 starting pitcher in baseball. Through this season, Nola is sporting a, 2-1 record with an ERA of 2.84, with 32 strikeouts, and an average opponent batting average of .223. Nola’s dominance is one reason why the 2021 Phillies have kept themselves in many ball games.
Zack Wheeler has also been a bright spot in the 2021 Phillies rotation. Wheeler is posting a 2-2 record with an ERA of 3.13. He also has 35 strikeouts and an average opponent batting average of .212. Wheeler has been a very viable option in the Phillies rotation. Jose Alvarado was showing he was a great pickup this off-season for the Phillies. Before he got hurt, Alvarado was posting a 1.35 ERA, with 12 strikeouts and an average opponent batting average of .185.
2021 Phillies: The Negatives
There are still some things on the Phillies roster that is holding the Phillies back from being more successful. For starters, the rotation is a bit in question. Nola and Wheeler have been great so far this season and even Eflin has been pretty good, the rest of the rotation is still in question. The 4 and 5 starters in Matt Moore and Chase Anderson have not produced or played well throughout this season. Neither of them have even recorded a single win as a Philadelphia Phillie and they both have extremely high ERAs. The starting pitching should be something that should be addressed as soon as possible or during the trade deadline.
Even though the Phillies have some great batters in their lineup, a good portion of their hitters are slumping as of recent. Players such as Alec Bohn and Andrew McCutchen are off to slow starts to the beginning of the year. In addition, the Phillies probably have one of the worst centerfield situations in baseball. Between Mickey Moniak, Adam Haesley, and Odubel Herrera, they all have a combined total of four hits on the season. That is absolutely terrible. Centerfield is also a position the Phillies need to take a hard look at and need to either address it as soon as they can or something they have to address during the trade deadline.
A common issue with the 2021 Phillies is a common issue that previous Phillies teams have had, the bullpen. To start out the season, the Phillies bullpen was actually pitching very well. That only lasted a few games, after that the bullpen returned to their old ways and blew big leads which ended up losing them games. Players like Alvarado and Neris have pitched well. However, after those two the bullpen isn’t great. Especially with Archie Bradley and Jose Alvarado hurt, the Phillies better hope the bullpen turns it around soon.
2021 Phillies: Conclusion
There have been some positives and negatives throughout the 2021 Phillies campaign. For the sake of the team, it is hopeful that the positive things keep happening and the negative things get improved. It is only 23 games into the season so the fans really do not know how this team is going to look by September, things could get a lot better or worse, it is hard to tell at this point. What can be determined is that this 2021 Phillies season will be interesting.
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