Monday, March 2, 2009

2009 Philadelphia Phillies Predictions

Life is good when you are the defending Champions, but if the Phillies want to repeat in a strong NL and a loaded NL East, they were going to need even better years from their star players in 2009. There is no question that this team has the talent to repeat, but its yet to be seen if these guys can produce as much after cashing in big in 2008. The lineup is very similar, as the only big move was Pat Burrell leaving for the Rays and the Phillies bringing in Raul Ibanez from Seattle to take over his spot in left field. Here is an even closer look at the 2009 Philadelphia Phillies and how we see them finishing up the season in the NL East. Bet Phillies +1000 to win World Series at


With the big bats of 2B Chase Utley, SS Jimmy Rollins, and 1B Ryan Howard, you have to like the offense of the Phillies that ended up leading the NL with 214 home runs. The Phillies did lose 33 home runs from Burrell, but Ibanez hit 23 home runs last season, has hit 20 or more in all of the past 3 seasons, and is a much better overall hitter than Burrell. Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth both had solid seasons holding down the other two outfield spots, as they combined for 38 home runs and added plenty of speed with 56 stolen bases. At third base look for the Phillies to continue to flip flop between Pedro Feliz and Gregg Dobbs depending on the opposing starting pitcher, as it worked well in 2008. The weak spot in the lineup is catcher Carlos Ruiz, as he hit just .219 for the season, but showed signs of improvement at the end of the season and in the postseason where he hit .391. The scary thing about the Phillies offense is that their 3 big sluggers are still young and could have even bigger seasons in 2009. It’s going to be tough to keep these guys out of the postseason. Bet Phillies + 500 to win NL Pennant at


What a postseason it was for the Phillies’ ace Cole Hamels, where he went 4-0 in 5 starts and was named the MVP of the World Series. Hamels went 14-10 in the regular season, but is talented enough to win 20 games in 2009. Behind Hamels is the veteran Jamie Moyer, who at the age of 46 is coming off another season where he started at least 32 games, and leading the Phillies in wins with 16. Brett Myers made a move from the bullpen back to the starting rotation going 10-13, but the Phillies will need a much better season out of this guy if they are going to repeat. Joe Blanton came over in a trade from the A’s midseason last year, and was a big part in the Phillies push for the playoffs. The final spot of the rotation is still up in the air, and it will likely be a spring training battle between J.A. Happ, Kyle Kendrick, and the veteran Chan Ho Park. The bullpen is led by closer Brad Lidge, who was unbelievable in 2008, completing all 41 save opportunities in the regular season and 7 more in the postseason. On top of Lidge the bullpen is stacked with talent. They have great setup men in Ryan Madson, Chad Durbin, and J.C. Romero. The only problems we could see coming out of this pitching staff is that the starters have been inconsistent, and its hard telling how many more years Moyer has left in the tank. Bet Phillies +160 to win NL East at

Prediction: 2nd in NL East

We might have the Phillies finishing behind the Mets in the NL East, but that doesn’t mean we don’t see this team finishing outside of the playoff picture. The Mets are going to be good with the additions to their bullpen, and its going to be a lot of fun watching these two teams go at it all season long.

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Kevin McGuire said...

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Go Phillies!