Philadelphia Phillies: Wait, are the Phillies actually good?

(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

After getting booed by fans at the home opener, Gabe Kapler’s Philadelphia Phillies have been on an absolute roll. But are they actually a good team?

Get out your brooms people, because the Philadelphia Phillies just sweep their interstate rivals the Pittsburgh Pirates in 11 innings at Citizens Bank Park for their fourth straight win.

Sure, the Pirates aren’t exactly an MLB powerhouse at this point, as they’ve essentially traded away all of their best pieces to facilitate a soft rebuild, but who would have thought that the Phillies would be sweeping any teams just one month ago?

Following an exciting offseason filled with notable acquisitions, subtractions, and leadership shake-ups, the Phillies looked like a team with a lot of potentials, but after some pretty bizarre decisions in their first series against the Atlanta Braves many publicly question if Gabe Kapler had what it takes to lead a professional baseball team.

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Whether it be benching Aaron Nola after throwing less than 70 pitches on opening day, designing his lineups days in advance with advanced analytics software, or some pretty peculiar substitutions throughout the team’s early games, many fans angrily wondering aloud if the Phillies front office had brought the second coming of Chip Kelly to South Philly.

This tension came to a head when the Phillies opened up their regular season at home against the Miami Marlins in a game that saw Kapler get booed by seemingly the entire crowd upon his introduction.

But luckily for the Phillies, it’s always darkest before the dawn.

After going 1-4 over their first five games of the season, the Phillies have actually been pretty good, going 13-3 over the last 16 games, including a string of 4 straight wins capped off by their most recent against the Pirates.

And for it’s the first time in a long time, the Phillies are actually a lot of fun to watch.

With plenty of young, ascending players like Scott Kingery, Aaron Altherr, and Rhys Hoskins to follow, the Phillies have become must-see TV but are they any good?

While no one is going to gawk at a 66 percent winning percentage, beating up on teams like the Pirates will hardly translate to a playoff berth if a team can’t do the same against the Yankees, Red Sox, and Astros of the league.

But thankfully Phillies fans, that hasn’t been the case.

Sure eight of their 14 wins have come against teams with a combined record of 16-47, but the team has still recorded some quality Ws against teams with winning records like against their division rivals the Braves, or their four straight wins against the once 12-6 Pirates.

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And for a young team like the Phillies, that’s something to be proud of.

At an average age of only 28, the Phillies have less than a dozen players who are on their second professional contracts, and even fewer who have actually made the postseason, so any sort of success the team finds early on should be lauded, not critiqued.

So are the Philadelphia Phillies a good team? At 14-7, I would say yes they are but are they good enough to finally return to the postseason and finally bring back playoff baseball to South Philly?

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Only time will tell, but with four of their next five series against teams with winning records like the Braves, Arizona Diamondbacks, Washington Nationals and San Francisco Giants, we won’t have to wait long to find out.