- The Philadelphia Phillies are first in the NL East with a 3.5 game lead
- Philly is winning in spite of Bryce Harper, who continues to struggle at the plate
- The Phillies’ odds to win the World Series have gone from +1100 to +880 in a week
The Phillies have seen their World Series odds improve more in the past week than some teams see all season. On May 7th their average odds were +1100. Now, on May 14th, they’re listed at +880.
2019 World Series Odds
|Los Angeles Dodgers||+475|
|New York Yankees||+650|
|Boston Red Sox||+1000|
|Tampa Bay Rays||+1200|
|St. Louis Cardinals||+1900|
*Odds taken 05/14/19
However, not everyone agrees that the Phillies are a top 10 club. Philadelphia is not listed in the MLB Power Rankings this week:
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) May 13, 2019
The Superstar Factor
The Phillies are an interesting team. On paper, they have a club that could win it all, but baseball’s a grind with 162 games and intense summer heat. We’ve already seen players on this team fall victim to slumps.
Bryce Harper through the Phillies' 1st 40 games:
– .222 BA, his worst through 40 team games in his career (prior lowest was .229 last year)
– 54 K, his most through 40 team games in his career (prior most was 41)
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) May 14, 2019
This team has some established stars and stars-to-be, but when you put them all together, it proven that it takes time to adjust.
Will History Repeat Itself?
The last time the Phillies won the World Series was in 2008. 40 games into that season, the team sat on a 24-16 record. Fast forward to 2019, and 40 games into the season, the team’s record is 24-16. This could be purely coincidental, and I don’t doubt it. But when things like this happen, you can guarantee fans hold onto it, and you can’t help but think about it.
After 40 games…
2019 Phillies: 24-16, +42 differential
2018 Phillies: 24-16, +42 differential
— Devan Fink (@DevanFink) May 14, 2019
The team is on the hunt for their fourth in a row tonight against a strong Milwaukee Brewers club. Another opportunity to get going at the plate.
Pitching Has Been Philly’s Strength
You can argue that starting pitching is one of the main reasons the Phillies have a 24-16 record. Their rotation has a 2.49 ERA over the past 16 games, which has resulted in a 11-5 stretch. With struggles at the plate from what should be their big bats, their fairly consistent pitching has been the one factor that has allowed them to consistently compete.
Aaron Nola, Nasty 93mph front door Two Seamer (with Tail). 😷 pic.twitter.com/BHRfUjYOwU
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 14, 2019
Philadelphia ace Aaron Nola has been far better lately, and is sporting a 3.07 ERA in three May starts after getting rocked in April. The Phillies have won each of his last three outings and he continues to trend in the right direction.
Come the fall I think the Phillies will in a position to contend, and I do think they’ll be in it all season. But when it comes to the postseason, the LA Dodgers are the team to beat.
Pick: Los Angeles Dodgers (+475)
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