PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - MAY 06: Alec Bohm #28 of the Philadelphia Phillies hits a one run home run during the seventh inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Citizens Bank Park on May 06, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Phillies were dealing with a ton of issues in July. Bryce Harper was out. Jean Segura was out. Ranger Suarez was out for a bit. Zach Eflin was out. And yet, they went 15-10 in the month (.600).  Finishing the month with a series win over the Braves, and then a 4-game sweep over the Pirates. Despite it all, they continue to win. They currently control the final Wildcard spot. And they earned tiebreakers over all of the teams they are competing with. They hold the tiebreaker over the Cardinals, The Padres, and the Brewers. So how do they keep winning despite all the issues, and the multiple regular players who were giving them nothing? Well, a few guys really stepped up.

These are guys who did not get off to the best starts but stepped up when the team needed them the most. So you won’t be seeing names like Aaron Nola or Zack Wheeler who have been good all year.  Some of these guys were heavily criticized for not doing enough the first few months. Fans were maybe even willing to give up on a few of them. But now you would be hard pressed to call them out after the month they just had.

Here are the five guys whose play helped them not only survive the month of July but thrive in it.

  • Alec Bohm

    Bohm was a hitting machine in the month of July. He ended the month with a slash line of .434/.457/.632/1.088. The .434 batting average led all players in July. He had 10 multi-hit games, including in 7 of his last 8. His power has even ticked up a bit. He had 7 extra-base hits the past month, including 3 home runs. Hell, he has even flashed the glove a few times. At his size, he may never be an ideal fit at third. But if he hits like this, maybe you put up with that.

  • JT Realmuto

    A lot of the talk this month has been about Bohm, and rightfully so. But JT Realmuto was amazing as well. His slash line for the month was .358/.423/.642/1.065. It was a much-needed turnaround for the Phillies catcher after June was such a horrible month for him. In fact, he had struggled for much of the year before turning it around the past 31 days. And it came just when the Phillies needed it. Harper was out, and Schwarber and Hoskins cooled down a bit. He had an issue in the middle of it with some misguided comments in response to him not being able to play in Toronto, but if he keeps hitting like this no one will care or even remember that.

  • Ranger Suarez

    It would be hard for Ranger Suarez to pitch any better in July. The only drawback was that he missed some time in the month. But in the 3 games he did pitch, he gave up 0 runs over 16 innings. He was also pretty good in June. He has a 2.45 ERA over his last 46 innings. Suarez was a force as a starter in the last 3 months of this past season. He started out this year a bit shaky. But if this is him regaining his form, the Phillies could have a very formidable 1-2-3 in their rotation.

  • Corey Knebel

    Much like Ranger Suarez, Corey Knebel got through the month of July without giving up a single run. Knebel was not good as the closer. He blew multiple saves and lost his job. But ever since he was moved into a non-closer role, he has been lights out. Knebel has 14 straight scoreless appearances heading into August. He has given up only two runs in the 16.2 innings he has pitched since he lost the closer gig. He isn’t doing what they signed him for, but as a setup man, he has been near perfect. It’s a new thing for Phillies fans to have a relief pitcher you can have absolute faith in every time they come in.

  • Jose Alvarado

    While not to the extent of the past 4 guys, Jose Alvarado did have a much improved July. He entered the month with a 5.85 ERA. And then in July, he went scoreless in 10 of his 12 appearances. He did have one ugly outing vs the Cubs where he have up 3 runs, but other than that he has been mostly lights out. He has turned himself into a reliable middle reliever for the team. His past struggles keep me from fully buying into this month. But it would be huge for them if he can continue to thrive in this role.

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