Philadelphia Phillies Position Player First Half Grades


The Phillies should hide this report card from their parents. 

The 2015 Philadelphia Phillies have been as-advertised through the first three-and-a-half months of the season. An anemic offense backed by a shaky starting pitching staff and a group of relievers who either struggle to throw strikes or are pressed into mop-up roles.

With just 29 wins heading into the All-Star Break, here is a quick rundown of how each player has played during the first half of the season, just in case you are smart and haven’t tried to watch them in the past few months.

Ben Revere: Like clockwork, Revere has shaken off a slow start and improved his batting average to over .290 as we head into the All-Star Break. Revere is a poor defender. In fact, he can’t do much outside of slap singles and steal bases. A contender may find him to be a serviceable platoon piece and Pat Gillick/Andy MacPhail/Ruben Amaro would be smart to accept any reasonable offer thrown their way.

Grade: C+

Also Read: Pirates, Mariners Interested in Ben Revere

Cody Asche: Less than two years into his MLB career, Asche has experienced a position change, but it doesn’t seem like he will improve beyond what he already is. In a perfect world, Asche is a poor-man’s Ben Zobrist; a serviceable, utility man who can use his versatility to find the field a few days a week. His .248/.284/.348 slash line isn’t impressing anyone, but it is the line of an average player, which is exactly what Asche has become.

Grade: C

Maikel Franco: By far, the brightest spot on the Phillies roster, Franco’s ability to drive the ball to all fields makes him look like a far cry from the youngster who struggled to put the ball in play last September and in Spring Training. His .861 OPS leads the entire team by over 100 points. He currently has 10 home runs and 34 RBIs, both second on the team behind Ryan Howard, albeit in 80 less at-bats. 

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Grade: A

Odubel Herrera: Herrera has been inconsistent at best at the plate this season, which is to be expected of a guy who has never played above double-A before this season. His long and awkward swing makes him hard to watch when his timing isn’t right, but he will continue to get at-bats

Grade: C+

Darin Ruf: Ruf has done a good job of proving the Phillies front office right this season, showing everyone he isn’t cut out for an everyday role in the majors. Batting just .231 with four home runs, Ruf spent a few weeks in Lehigh Valley after the June promotion of Dom Brown and hasn’t been able to find consistent playing time since.

Grade: D+

Cameron Rupp: Heading into 2015, I scoffed at the idea of Rupp being an actual Major League ballplayer. His .617 OPS proves he is unable to contribute offensively, but he has had success throwing out base-runners consistently. Considering his role as a backup catcher doesn’t call to carry the load offensively, he hasn’t been too terrible.

Grade: B-

Freddy Galvis: There has been a lot of ups and downs for Galvis in his first season as a starter. After batting .355 in the month of April, his batting average plummeted 100 points by June 28 before getting back up to .279. Defensively, Galvis has been serviceable, but if he can become more consistent with his bat, he could find a role with the team even once J.P. Crawford takes over at shortstop.

Grade: B

Cesar Hernandez: As unbearable as the Chase Utley depreciation has been for everyone else, it has been the reason for Hernandez’s first extended success in the majors. Since being named the everyday second baseman, Cesar has hit an impressive .358 with an OPS of .842. Amaro has said he expects for Hernandez to start for the rest of the season, and although it will hurt to see Utley on the bench, Hernandez’s continued success could mean the Phillies have one less position to fill for the future.

Grade: A

Jeff Francoeur: Francouer hasn’t been all that bad in 2015, but for some reason he keeps getting thrust into the spotlight. He pitched two innings last month. He batted cleanup for a week at the beginning of the season and had that unfortunate series of errors on one play against the Nationals. Frenchy is slugging .410 which is good for third on the team, but he has yet to have an extended run of success. With Brown now on the roster for the rest of the season, expect his playing time to diminish unless another outfielder is moved.

Grade: C

Ryan Howard: Howard hasn’t been good in 2015, but he also hasn’t been impossible to watch, which seems like a step in the right direction. He had a tremendous month of May hitting six home runs and putting up an OPS of .865. He may (probably not) be tradable, but the scary thing is: do the Phillies have anyone to take over his production if he leaves?

Grade: B-

Jul 11, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz (51) greets first baseman Ryan Howard (6) after his solo home run in the sixth inning against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Ruiz: Chooch’s offensive numbers have continued their steady decline, but what is startling is his inabilty to play defense in 2015. At times, his game management from behind the plate has been questionable, he has already tied his career high in errors with six and he has thrown out only 20% of base-stealers, also good for worst in his career. It’s frightening to think that Rupp may be a more productive option as the everyday backstop.

Grade: D+

Andres Blanco: I bet you would be surprised to find he’s still on the active roster. You’re probably more surprised to learn he’s played in over 50 games this year. Blanco hasn’t really made an impression in his time in Philadelphia and honestly, I doubt you care if I tell you what he has done. So we’ll just mark this up as an incomplete. Sound good?

Grade: N/A

Domonic Brown: After a few uninspiring months in AAA, Brown is getting his last shot with the Phillies and has yet to impress. Batting just .205 with an OPS of .520, he is still searching for his first home run of the season. It’s amazing how far he has fallen from the guy who put up these numbers in a 15-game span in 2013: 23 hits, 11 home runs, 22 RBIs, 1.513 OPS.

Grade: F

Chase Utley: I can’t bring myself to elaborate. You all know what has happened in what may be his final season in red pinstripes.

Grade: F

Next: Phillies Rumors: Jonathan Papelbon to the Blue Jays?