ESPN Projection: Phillies Will Win 84 Games in 2019
With all of the additions this offseason, it is safe to say that the optimism surrounding the Philadelphia Phillies is as high as its been since the 2011 season.
Even with all the high-profile additions, ESPN’s Bradford Doolittle projected the Phillies to miss out on the playoffs for the eighth straight year, since their last playoff season in 2001, winning 84 games in his most recent MLB win-loss predictions.
The Phillies' offense should be outstanding, and if Maikel Franco and Odubel Herrera can both step up a tier, and Scott Kingery puts the super back into super-utility, it's entirely possible that Philadelphia could have the NL's best offense. The question right now is whether it's worth it for Philly to move on either Keuchel, Kimbrel or both. In the case of Keuchel, if you're optimistic, you might mark him as a 2-win upgrade over any of Nick Pivetta, Zach Eflin or Vince Velasquez. The optimistic part of it is Keuchel's ability to keep the ball in the park, always a plus for a pitcher toiling at Citizens Bank Park. It's just more of an uptick in value than you could expect from Kimbrel. Still, depending on the price, signing either player might not make fiscal sense. If that's the case, all eyes turn to watching Harper take his first swings as a home player in Philly, and to seeing whether Gabe Kapler can oversee a meaningful improvement from last year's wretched defense.
This offseason, the team filled plenty of voids in their lineup, adding multiple All-Stars to an offense that scored just over four runs per game.
As for the pitching, the Phillies acquired some relief pitching, including David Robertson, James Pazos and Jose Alvarez, to add depth to the bullpen, but are currently rolling with the same five in the starting rotation.
The Phillies open up their season on March 28 with a series against the Braves at Citizens Bank Park.