The Phillies were swinging with confidence this weekend in Colorado. Both at the plate and in the midst of a benches-clearing dustup, the Phillies were ready for the challenge.
Here’s hoping they bring that same energy and fighting spirit to San Francisco as they continue their road trip.
A Familiar Friend?
The Phillies will get a chance to run into former manager Gabe Kapler in this upcoming series. If you remember, last season, Kapler and the Giants came into Philadelphia and took two of three from the Phillies, which ended up getting Joe Girardi fired.
Aside from a dominant 2021 season, in which the Giants won 107 games, Gabe has been rather average during this time with the Giants. This season, San Francisco is 17-23, sitting 8.5 games back of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the West.
Coming into this series, the Giants have lost 3 in a row, after being swept by their division rival Diamondbacks. They are looking for a bounce-back series, and the Phillies can’t afford to give them that opportunity.
The Phillies made the post-season last year primarily to their head-to-head records in the National League.
By beating the Milwaukee Brewers in their season series, they had the advantage over the Brew Crew when it came to a post-season tiebreaker. With the Braves looking like the best team in baseball, the Phillies might be looking at the Wild Card as their path back to the playoffs.
Taking the season series against the Giants could be very pivotal for them down the stretch. While I do not expect San Francisco to find themselves in the playoff hunt, they did finish with 81 wins last season, and a late-season surge nearly helped them find a way.
The Phillies need to take at least two of these next three games. Win the series, get back over .500, and build some separation between them and another team who could potentially stand in their way.
The Phillies need more out of star shortstop Trea Turner.
After signing Trea to an 11-year, 300 million-dollar contract this off-season, the Phillies were expecting more than the products they have received.
Turner is typically not a fast starter. April and May are his slow months, and he really heats up as the weather does. Like Kyle Schwarber, once he gets going, he can carry an offense for months, and that is what the Phillies need out of him.
While I think the extra base hitting will come, the aspect of Trea Turner’s game that I would like to see is his activity on the bases.
Five steals through this point of the season is a disappointment in my eyes. Turner has elite speed and stolen bases have been up across the sport. I understand not wanting to run into outs, I feel as though the Phillies can really benefit from more aggression on the bases.
The more opportunities with runners in scoring position for Harper and Castellanos can be really important in close games. I would like to see Turner attempt at least two steals in this upcoming series.
AP Photo/Matt Slocum