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The Phillies slide down the NL East Standings all started at the end of the 2011 NLCS. Gruesomely, Ryan Howard pulverized his ankle running down to 1st, and the team has not been right since.
A late charge in 2012 preserved a 81 – 81 record – to extend a decade of .500 or better baseball, however 2013 held a cruel fate of a 73 – 89 final mark.
Injuries to ‘now retired’ Roy Halladay and Howard helped plague the team to its first losing season in 11 years.
Ruben Amaro Jr. and the brass steadfastly approach this season like every other campaign in the last few years, “we will be better in 2014, and still have enough to compete.” Read the rest of this entry
The Philadelphia Phillies Players In All Organizational Affiliates, Prospects + Depth Charts (MLB + MiLB) Fall 2013
The Phillies have posted winning records since 2001. While the year may be getting away from them in 2013, there are some extremely encouraging signs for the future.’
Ben Revere was excelling at his position at CF and at the plate before he went down with a season ending injury.
The emergence of Domonic Brown in the 1st half, and 1B/OF Darin Ruf, have given the team a cost conscious alternative to combat huge salaries like Cliff Lee and Ryan Howard, that combine to be over $50 in the next 3 years, the latter, has been injured the most of the last 2 seasons.
However, the team also extended franchise face Chase Utley, for 2 YRs/$25 – 30 MIL – that should see him possibly retire a Phillie.
The club has played much better since Ryne Sandberg assumed the helm as manager.
The question going forward is to what this team will do with Roy Halladay and Carlos Ruiz. Somehow, I think that Ruben Amaro JR, will find a way to re-sign these two guys for a limited years, and possibly incentive laden contracts this coming winter.
Whatever the case, it should be an interesting ride in Philly the next few years.
For a Full 3 year Salary Outlook plus last years Stats for every player in the Phillies Organization click here.
For the 3 Part Historical Series I did on the Phillies organization, click here.
Chase Utley Highlights
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The Phillies are top-heavy for their payroll in 2013. I talked a lot about this in Part 1 of this series (The Franchise). What they really need is for Domonic Brown, John Mayberry and Ben Revere to improve in their role with the club and get as much production as they can out of their superstars. 2013 looks a lot better than the years after. Roy Halladay must return to form in 2013.
I am predicting the team will win at least 90 games in this year with the Starting Pitching having a bounce back season. The fans should all come in droves to the park while this club is competitive. The Phillies will age really fast after 2013, so there will undoubtedly be some rougher times ahead, as Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard all fade into the back half of their careers.
The New York Yankees are facing a similar dilemma. You might even see a Yanks/Phillies World Series rematch in 2013. I am sure the Dodgers, Angels, Tigers and Nationals will try to have their say about that as well.
The smaller market teams might fight for another ring as well. You are starting to see some distances set forth from the high-priced salaried teams to the lower payroll clubs with both Los Angeles teams and Detroit nearing or going over the Luxury Tax Threshold of 178 Million Dollars in Player Salaries.
Again, I am thinking that MLB Baseball might have to realign soon-to make the divisions stack up for payroll and geography reasons. I wrote an article about this some time ago here. The Phillies have led the MLB in attendance for the last 3 years, so they will be able to keep the payroll at a high mark as long as the baseball revenue is able to match it. It is the long-term contracts that won’t garner them much value at the end of these deals, that will ultimately set the Franchise back awhile.
Ryan Howard highlights are below. He must return to his 40 HR self next year otherwise the Phillies will have a tough time competing.
For Part 1 of the Phillies Article Series: The Franchise click here:
For Part 2 of the Phillies Article Series: The Hitters click here:
For Part 3 of the Phillies Article Series: The Pitcher click here
For the Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals Franchise 5 Part Series: click here