• July 1, 2022

Phillies And The Opportunity For A Dynasty

The St. Louis Cardinals once again proved to the sports world that championships aren’t won on paper and if you have momentum going into October you can beat anyone. They definitely caught a few breaks along the way to glory but that comes with the territory of being a championship ball club. The Phillies had no luck in any way this October but on paper they still are without a doubt the best team in baseball. With the season now officially over I took a few moments to reflect back on the Phillies season and think about the future as well and began asking myself, is this team missing out on an opportunity to be a baseball dynasty?

During the regular season this team performed up to my expectations. The pitching dominated and carried them all season. The bats had their moments of glory but for the most part didn’t live up to the hype. Bottom line this team underachieved in a major way once October hit and that includes the pitching. Cliff Lee allowing a 4-run lead to slip away in Game 2 of the NLDS is inexcusable and he should be taking more heat for it. The bats didn’t operate when they were needed to the most and that’s another issue that should be addressed. This team needs to become more clutch in big games. After this season I have no trust in this lineup going forward when we are put in an elimination situation. Between game 6 of the NLCS last season and game 5 of this year’s NLDS I have no reason to believe we can put runs on the board when we get into these games.

The Phillies are beginning to look like a team on the downside. In the past three seasons since the 08 title they’ve been eliminated a round earlier then the year before and interestingly all by the eventual champs. By the way the Flyers the past two seasons and the Eagles last year also were eliminated by the eventual champs which seems to be an interesting trend going on in town. The Phillies exiting a round earlier than the previous year is a concern though. This team will be in the playoffs again next season because they still have a dominant rotation even without Oswalt. Also I don’t see any of the other NL East teams catching up to the Phillies just yet but the Braves are indeed gaining ground.

The past two seasons the Phillies were the best team in the National League and should have been in the World Series to have an opportunity to compete for another championship. These are missed opportunities that we will look back on one day. This team isn’t getting any younger and the window of opportunity is getting smaller with each passing season. They need to begin the process of getting younger but also maintaining the same level of play which will be a challenge. I believe after another two or three seasons you will see this team over-taken in the division unless they can replenish existing talent with young talent that can compete at a high level.

Although the Phillies captured the title in 08 which was very impressive and satisfying to the fan base we are missing out on the chance to be a legitimate baseball dynasty. At some point during the past three seasons the team should have captured another World Series or two. Going forward I see it as a challenge for this team to capture another title unless the bats can become clutch. If we continue to make the playoffs over the next few seasons and not win another World Series I’ll view this team as nothing more than another version of the 91-05 Atlanta Braves teams. During that span the Braves went to the post season every year and captured only one World Series in 95.

No matter how much longer this streak of playoff appearances will go for it won’t be solidified in baseball history as a dynasty unless another World Series or two can be won and this team is blowing opportunities to do that. I hope I’m wrong but the way recent seasons have ended since 08 shows me this team is aging and declining. Hopefully the players realize the window of opportunity won’t be open forever and the time to put a stamp on baseball history is now.

John Stratis

A lifelong Philadelphia sports fan always looking to share his opinion about the greatest sports town in the world. Follow me on twitter @JohnStratis

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2 Comments

  • A couple of things that we know and expect to happen..
    #1) The Phils had the 2nd Highest Payroll in all of MLB in 2011 ($170 Million and this does not guarantee a World Series Appearance)
    #2) Phils already Have Oswalt’s & Lidge’s allmost $28 Million Combined Salary coming off the books for 2012 Season
    #3) Expect the Phils not to resign OF/PH GLoad, C Scheider
    #4) Expect the Phils to offer Contracts to SS Rollins and Closer Madson
    #5) Expect thh Phils to play Mayberry JR at 1B as Howard recovers from Surgery
    #6) Sign Hamels to a long-term deal

    Now some moves that GM Paulman would look to make
    #1) Offer Ibanez a 1 year minimum deal with incentives to remain as LF (until D BRown in ready which probably won’t be until 2013) and once Howard returns from Injury, Ibanaez/MAyberry can platoon in LF For 2012 Season
    #2) Trade 2B C Utley to a West Coost Team while his Value is still high, Maybe package him and a young Pitcher for to Dodgers for Kemp or other young talent..Then Shift Polanco to play 2B for the 2012 Season
    #3) Go after a 3B in free-agency or by trade.. I like Aramis Ramirez from the CUbs or maybe even David Wright from the Mets who are looking to shed payroll
    #4) Phils Top 3 Starting Pitchers are built to win now and both Halladay/Lee probably have 2 very good Seasons left as they approach their mid-30’s.. There is no sense in thinking this same PHillie everyday line-up is good enough to win.. 5 Years in the Playoffs but the last 2 Seasons had them loading in the NL Championship Series and this Season the opening rounch… Teams like the Cardinals,Brewers,Diamonbacks,Braves,Nats,Marlins,Reds are all younger and have very good lineups who can compete with the Phils so to stand pat would actually mean the Pihls would begine to fall behind other clubs.. The Phils also need more speed and athleticism and especially in the IF.
    The Phils do not need to blow this team up and rebuild this team.. They need to tweak and add some power/productions at 3B, add a Left HAnd Reliever to Bullpen, A solid back-up Catcher (Cervelli from the Yankees is available) and maybe 1 big move to solidy LF and maybe shake some things up..
    I think nnow is the time to trad Utley for his best days are behind him and he’s from the west coast and a popular player, maybe a package of Utley,Brown and Stutes for a Kemp and young IF Prospet can close the Deal for the Dodgers…or a Brown,Worley, and prospect to the Mets for D Wright
    but I think GM Amaro has to make some bold moves to shakethis team up without breaking it apart.. and add some depth off the Bench and they can be right there again for the next couple of Seasons.. If they stand pat and count on another year or two with these regulars who are are getting odler (VIctorino,Utley,Polanco,Rollins) they will have very little Trade Value which basically means the Phils would be starting from scratch when this run is over..Moves must be made for an eye of remaining competitive for the next 3-4-5 Seasons..

  • Their window closed up, when Howard blew his achilles out. They need to cut their loses now, & get what they can for Utley, Polanco & Blanton, & let J-Roll & Ibanez walk. Sign & trade for new blood. Do everything you can to sign Pujols. I don’t give a $#!t if we still have Howard. He will be a non-factor, this year. Trade him too, when he returns. They are old, injury riddled, & have no power anymore. Time to start over, while we still have studs in the rotation.

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