The hope would be that things would be different for the Phillies in the regular season this year. There was hype last season. But man did they come out of the gate slow. So slow, that Joe Girardi lost his job. Once Rob Thomson took over, things started to change. They scuffled at the end of the regular season a bit, but managed to end the decade-long playoff drought. Once they got there, they really took off. They upset the Cardinals. Followed that up by upsetting the 100-win Braves. And then continued that by beating the Padres to get to the World Series.
You would think that would carry over into this season. They even had what on paper was a great offseason. They signed the biggest Free Agent on the market, Trea Turner. Added some powerful arms in the bullpen. Got Taijuan Walker in. Expectations were even higher than they were going into last season.
But they have started slow again. They have hovered around .500 all season. And every time it feels like they are taking off, they go on an extended losing streak to fall back under .500 and down into 4th place in the NL East.
More concerning, there are some troubling trends in these losses that make you wonder if they really are as good as we think. Memorial Day is coming up, and they are still struggling. It is of course still early. And the Phillies were under .500 going into June last season, then ended up in the World Series. But is that really the road they want to go down again? Settling for one of the final two wild card spots, then having to claw through the post-season on the road? The Phillies need to pull it together. The faster the better.