Philadelphia Phillies Poised to Miss Playoffs

April 14, 2009 by andrew robeson  
Filed under Fan News

There is one thing that is indisputable: the Phillies are the defending world champions.

What happens this year is another story.

While the Nationals will almost surely finish last in the NL East, the rest of the division is up for grabs.

A strong first week has people believing in both the Florida Marlins and the Braves.

It seems like the AL East's problem has now become the NL East's. Four of the best teams in the league are now in one division.

So who will be the odd men out?

There is no doubt the Phillies have probably the best lineup in the east, if not the National League. But their pitching will be their downfall.

Cole Hamels, Brett Myers, Joe Blanton, Jamie Moyer, and Chan Ho Park.

I can not see a team with these guys as their starting five being a 90 win team. Of those five, only Hamels and Moyer had winning seasons in 2008.

Moyer is now 46 years old and its been showing this year. He may have won Monday night's game but he can not expect to give up four runs in six innings and win every time.

Hamels has had a rough start to 2008, but I am sure he will rebound. The guy has great stuff.

But how far can one pitcher get you? Brett Myers has been all over the place throughout his career. Joe Blanton is a .500 pitcher at best. And Chan Ho Park had trouble making a major league roster, yet he might be the best of the three.

Already the Phillies bullpen has accounted for two of their four wins. But we all know what happens to teams that rely on their bullpens too heavily to win games.

The Phillies will not make the playoffs if these guys remain their starting five. Not when they have to face the young guns of the Marlins. The Mets staff is not quite as good, but not a single one of their pitcher was below .500 in 2008. Pretty crazy stuff.

I think the Marlins and Mets pitching staffs will land them ahead of the Phillies at the end of the year.

I am sure the Phillies will go out and trade for a starter, but I just do not think that will be enough for them this year. The east is strong, and the Phillies will be the odd men out.

The Braves have a staff that added Derek Lowe and started the year 5-1 with Tom Glavine and Tim Hudson on the disable list.

Is it crazy to suggest the Phillies may find their way to a fourth place finish?

Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

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