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MLB Fan Previews - Philadelphia Phillies

by Ryan Ryan 3/6/074 Comment Comments »

MLB Fan Previews - Philadelphia Phillies Photo

Welcome to our MLB Fan Previews. Peter Gammons can give you all the inside info, John Kruk can remind you not to eat that extra donut and Steve Phillips can give you hope that you'd make a great GM ... but all these 'experts' combined can't top the true passion of the everyday fan. So that's what we're trying to provide you with here. Real thoughts and predictions from real fans. Hope you enjoy! We continue today with Ryan and the Philadelphia Phillies.


For once, there is optimism in Philly. After last year's near playoff berth and Ryan Howard's monster season, the notoriously fickle Philly fans finally expect a big season. The players, most notably Jimmy Rollins, have bought into the mantra that this is Philly's year. Do they have what it takes to win the NL East from the Mets and Braves?


A COMMON FAN'S 4 QUESTIONS FOR THE 2007 PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES

1. Can the stars match their output in 2006?

I really think this is one of the biggest issues facing the Phillies in 2007.  They nearly made the playoffs last year on the backs of Chase Utley and Ryan Howard.  In order to get over the hump in 2007, the rest of the team is going to have to contribute what they can to the cause.  Aaron Rowand is going to have to produce again this year (and stay healthy).  Abraham Nunez and Shane Victorino are going to have to contribute in the bottom part of the order.  Of course, I think Utley and Howard (along with Jimmy Rollins) are going to have to come close to matching their numbers from 2006. That's a pretty tall order for both of them.

2. Can Pat Burrell be a feared hitter?

There's been a lot of debate about whether Burrell's that bad or whether the Phillies fans just have unreasonable expectations of him.  I'm not going to waste time debating that here.  BUT, I do feel that the Phillies need him to be consistent this year.  He cut down the strikeouts last year, but it was in 100 fewer at-bats. The Phillies need someone to make opposing pitchers pay for not pitching to Howard.  I don't really think that Victorino or Nunez are the answer, so Burrell's going to have to step up.

 

3. Can this pitching staff lead Philadelphia to the post-season in 2007?MLB Fan Previews - Philadelphia Phillies Photo

On the surface, this staff looks solid but not spectacular. Brett Myers returns to lead the staff.  He led the team in strikeouts and wins in 2006. The addition of Freddy Garcia and Adam Eaton should bring some stability to a rotation that at times seemed like it was lacking consistency. Cole Hamels is the future of this staff. He only had 9 wins last year, but he struck out 145 batters in 132 innings.  I don't think these guys are going to be world-beaters, but they should be able to keep the Phils in most games.  With Gordon closing out, they should be competent at the end of the game as well. Will competence be enough?

 
4. The Phillies believe they can win the NL East. Can they convince the rest of the league?

One thing I really like about this year's team is that they truly seem to think they can win. They've been close to the playoffs in each of the last two years. They're going to have to overcome that swoon that seems to hit them every year. That's where I think the acquisition of Eaton and Garcia can really help. Even though neither of these guys is a premier pitcher in the league, they both can eat up innings when needed. If they can manage not to allow the slumps to get too long, then I think they have a great shot making the post-season for the first time since 1993.


(Ed Note: Of course, we don't have all the answers, so give us your insight in the comments.)

 

Projected Lineup (2006 stats)

SS Jimmy Rollins (.277.334/.478, 25 HR, 83 RBI)
RF Shane Victorino (.287.346/.414, 6 HR, 46 RBI)
2B Chase Utley (.309/.379/.527, 32 HR, 102 RBI)
1B Ryan Howard (.313/.425/.659, 58 HR, 149 RBI)
LF Pat Burrell (.258/.388/.502, 29 HR, 95 RBI)
CF Aaron Rowand (.262/.321/425, 12 HR, 47 RBI)
3B Wes Helms (.329/.390/.575, 10 HR, 47 RBI- 240 AB)
C Rod Barajas (.256/.298/.410, 11 HR, 41 RBI)

Projected Rotation/Bullpen
Freddy Garcia (17-9, 4.53 ERA, 135 K)
Brett Myers (12-7, 3.91 ERA, 189 K)
Cole Hamels (9-8, 4.08 ERA, 145 K)
Jamie Moyer (11-14, 4.30 ERA, 108 K)
Adam Eaton (7-4, 5.12 ERA, 43 K)/Jon Lieber (9-11, 4.93 ERA, 100 K)

Closer: Tom Gordon (3-4, 34 SV, 3.34 ERA)
RH Setup: Geoff Geary (7-1, 2.96 ERA)
LH Setup: Matt Smith (8.2 IP)

Utlity Men (recommended blogs)
Phantic Phollow Up
Shallow Center
Beerleaguer
The Good Phight

Share your thoughts on the 2007 Philadelphia Phillies. What are your bold predictions for them this season?

Read Related:  MLB

20
2007 Philadelphia Phillies Season Prediction Poll (Edited 03/01/07 12:49PM by Ryan)
Read the Article: MLB Fan Previews - Philadelphia Phillies

2007 Philadelphia Phillies Season Prediction Poll <span style="font-size:12px;">(Edited 03/01/07 12:49PM by Ryan)</span> Photo

 

It's that time again.  The Phillies finished 2006 with a record of 85-77, 12 games back of the Mets.

 

How will things shake out for the Phils this year? 

 

Can Howard and Utley keep up the pace they set last year? 

 

Will Eaton and Garcia help stabilize the rotation?

 

Can they make the post-season for the first time since 1993?

Featured by: CriticalFanatic at 3/01/07 11:50AM
Scored by Scott on 09/30/07 at 06:59AM | Closed on 03/31/07 at 11:45PM
FanIQ Pts? 10 | MLB, Philadelphia Phillies, NL East | Multiple Choice Prediction Poll
Team Breakout:
Correct Answer48 Fans 
  1. How will the Phillies finish this season? (10 points)
Correct29%a. They will win the NL East
27%b. They will finish 2nd in the NL East and win the Wildcard playoff berth
25%c. They will finish 2nd in the NL East
19%d. They will finish 3rd in the NL East
0%e. They will finish 4th in the NL East
0%f. They will finish 5th in the NL East
  2. How many wins for the Phillies in 2007? (10 points)
0%a. 0-60 wins
2%b. 61-67 wins
0%c. 68-75 wins
4%d. 76-80 wins
25%e. 81-85 wins
Correct31%f. 86-90 wins
38%g. 91-95 wins
0%h. 96 or more wins
  3. Brett Myers led the Phillies with 198 innings pitched last season. The Phils brought in Freddy Garcia and Adam Eaton to help share the burden. How many Phillies pitchers will throw over 170 innings this year? (Myers was the only one in 2006) (6 points)
2%a. None
6%b. One
Correct67%c. Two
25%d. Three
0%e. Four or more
  4. The Phillies only had 43 saves last season, with Tom Gordon earning 34 of those. How many games will Phillies pitchers save this season? (7 points)
0%a. 0-25 games
2%b. 26-30 games
2%c. 31-35 games
21%d. 36-40 games
Correct48%e. 41-45 games
23%f. 46-50 games
4%g. 51 or more games
  5. Brett Myers led the Phillies staff with 12 victories last year. Which pitcher will have the most wins this year? (8 points)
40%a. Brett Myers
Correct25%b. Cole Hamels
4%c. Adam Eaton
29%d. Freddy Garcia
2%e. Jon Lieber
0%f. Any other pitcher on the Phillies' staff
  6. Ryan Howard had a monster season in 2006 (58 HR, 149 RBI, .313 avg) winning the NL MVP. How will Howard do in the Triple Crown categories this year compared to last year? (If there are ties in any category, both options will be given credit) (9 points)
2%a. Increase in RBI, homeruns and batting average.
8%b. Increase in RBI and homeruns, but not batting average
15%c. Increase in RBI and batting average, but not homeruns
4%d. Increase in batting average and homeruns, but not RBI
8%e. Increase in only RBI, but not homeruns or batting average
2%f. Increase in homeruns, but not RBI or batting average
19%g. Increase in batting average, but not RBI or homeruns
Correct42%h. He will not increase in any of these categories.
  7. The Phillies had three players with over 100 strikeouts last year. Howard (181), Utley (132), and Burrell (131) Which of these players will have the fewest strikeouts in 2007? (6 points)
0%a. Ryan Howard
Correct83%b. Chase Utley
17%c. Pat Burrell
  8. Break-out! Which these players will have the largest increase in their hit total in 2007? (2006 numbers next to name - be sure to check out complete stats to make best choice!) (7 points)
8%a. Chase Utley (203)
6%b. Jimmy Rollins (191)
0%c. Ryan Howard (182)
21%d. Pat Burrell (119)
23%e. Shane Victorino (119)
Correct42%f. Aaron Rowland (106)
  9. Which of these players will play in the most games for the Phillies in 2007? (2006 totals) (6 points)
67%a. Chase Utley (160 games)
10%b. Ryan Howard (159 games)
Correct21%c. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)
2%d. Shane Victorino (153 games)
0%e. Pat Burrell (144 games)
  10. Many experts see the NL East race coming down to the Phillies and the Mets, with many giving the Mets the edge. How will the Phillies fare in their 18 games against the Mets in 2007? (9 points)
8%a. They will win 1 to 5 games against the Mets.
27%b. They will win 6 to 8 games against the Mets.
56%c. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.
Correct8%d. They will win 12 to 14 games against the Mets
0%e. They will win 15 to 17 games against the Mets.
0%f. They will win all 18 of their games against the Mets!
  Tiebreaker: How many wins will the Phillies have at the All-Star Break?
Correct 44

 &nbp;
TOP COMMENT * * * * * * * * * * * *
#1 | 2763 days ago

We are going to win the NL east Ryan. I gotta good feeling.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 51 or more games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
  
18 Comments | Sorted by Most Recent First | Red = You Disagreed
Vote for your favorite comments. Fans decide the Top Comment (3+ votes) and also hide poor quality comments (4+ votes).
#1 | 2763 days ago

We are going to win the NL east Ryan. I gotta good feeling.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 51 or more games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#2 | 2763 days ago

i am sorry the mets are winning the N.L. east
1. They will finish 2nd in the NL East and win the Wildcard playoff berth  2. 61-67 wins  3. Two  4. 36-40 games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Pat Burrell (119)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 1 to 5 games against the Mets.  
#3 | 2763 days ago

pezzola714 wrote:
i am sorry the mets are winning the N.L. east
We shall see my friend. Besides nobody will think any less of the Mets if they finish second or third.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 51 or more games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#4 | 2763 days ago

Yossarian wrote:
We shall see my friend. Besides nobody will think any less of the Mets if they finish second or third.

I'm not sure it's possible to think less of the Mets....

1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Two  4. 41-45 games  5. Cole Hamels  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Shane Victorino (119)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#5 | 2759 days ago

If given the option, I think the Mets would trade starting rotations with anyone in the NL except the Nats.  A gimpy Pedro for the final third of the year is not the answer.  Plus, Wagner is way overdue for a serious injury, and who knows how Sanchez will recover from that car accident.  The Mets' super lineup better perform, because I don't think a team with pitching this weak has ever made the postseason.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 86-90 wins  3. Three  4. 41-45 games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Pat Burrell  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#6 | 2758 days ago

Doh
#7 | 2758 days ago

pezzola714 wrote:
i am sorry the mets are winning the N.L. east
I think you are mistaken! Atlanta will win the NL East.
#8 | 2758 days ago

Eric wrote:
Doh
Yeah, I'm not real sure what happened there.
1. They will finish 2nd in the NL East  2. 86-90 wins  3. Two  4. 41-45 games  5. Cole Hamels  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Pat Burrell (119)  9. Ryan Howard (159 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#9 | 2758 days ago

Eric_ wrote:
Yeah, I'm not real sure what happened there.
looks like you were trying to plagiarize to me... but I won't tell Ryan. Our little secret, k?
#10 | 2758 days ago

Phillies all the way! Prove all my friends wrong!
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 36-40 games  5. Cole Hamels  6. Increase in batting average, but not RBI or homeruns  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#11 | 2758 days ago
ahusted (+)

the Phillies are going to put up a lot of runs. They have players who get on base and between Utley and Howard, they will drive a lot of those runs in. 

 

Question seems to be if the pitchers can give up less runs.  And if Myers can keep his hands off his wife

1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Two  4. 41-45 games  5. Brett Myers  6. Increase in batting average, but not RBI or homeruns  7. Chase Utley  8. Pat Burrell (119)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#12 | 2757 days ago

ahusted wrote:

the Phillies are going to put up a lot of runs. They have players who get on base and between Utley and Howard, they will drive a lot of those runs in. 

 

Question seems to be if the pitchers can give up less runs.  And if Myers can keep his hands off his wife

hahaha
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 36-40 games  5. Cole Hamels  6. Increase in batting average, but not RBI or homeruns  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#13 | 2741 days ago

I really wish they had a bona fide leadoff hitter though. Reyes is what gives the Mets the edge, but I am excited.

Burrell was my least strikeout guy because I feel by the half way point of the season someone else will be in left field. I wish I knew who though.
1. They will finish 2nd in the NL East and win the Wildcard playoff berth  2. 91-95 wins  3. Two  4. 41-45 games  5. Freddy Garcia  6. Increase in only RBI, but not homeruns or batting average  7. Pat Burrell  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#14 | 2741 days ago

hummus wrote:
I really wish they had a bona fide leadoff hitter though. Reyes is what gives the Mets the edge, but I am excited.

Burrell was my least strikeout guy because I feel by the half way point of the season someone else will be in left field. I wish I knew who though.
I was watching the game yesterday against the Red Sox, and they said they may have Victorino leadoff and have Rollins bat 5th so he can protect Howard and drive in more runs.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 51 or more games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#15 | 2741 days ago

Yossarian wrote:
I was watching the game yesterday against the Red Sox, and they said they may have Victorino leadoff and have Rollins bat 5th so he can protect Howard and drive in more runs.
not a bad idea, i think Rollins K's too much to  be leadoff although he is a very good player. the Phillies as a team I think need to cut down on their K's
1. They will finish 2nd in the NL East and win the Wildcard playoff berth  2. 91-95 wins  3. Two  4. 41-45 games  5. Freddy Garcia  6. Increase in only RBI, but not homeruns or batting average  7. Pat Burrell  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#16 | 2741 days ago

Yeah, Burrell, Rollins, Utley, and Howard all need to cut down on the K's. You are right about Rollins he is not a leadoff hitter, but he has done pretty well the last couple of years in that role. Burrell is the one that drives me crazy, he can't hit with runners in scoring position or in clutch situations.
1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Three  4. 51 or more games  5. Brett Myers  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  
#17 | 2736 days ago

mets obviously will win the east. especially since a big name pitcher will land here by the trading deadline. mets win it easy.
1. They will finish 2nd in the NL East and win the Wildcard playoff berth  2. 86-90 wins  3. Two  4. 36-40 games  5. Freddy Garcia  6. He will not increase in any of these categories.  7. Pat Burrell  8. Chase Utley (203)  9. Chase Utley (160 games)  10. They will win 1 to 5 games against the Mets.  
#18 | 2550 days ago

Alas a long regular season is over the Phitins are Division Champs!!!! Bring on Colorado or San Diego!!!

1. They will win the NL East  2. 91-95 wins  3. Two  4. 46-50 games  5. Cole Hamels  6. Increase in RBI and homeruns, but not batting average  7. Chase Utley  8. Aaron Rowland (106)  9. Jimmy Rollins (158 games)  10. They will win 9 to 11 games against the Mets.  

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