With the end of April just a few days away, the first calendar month of baseball is nearly in the books. With that, you have some contenders like the Houston Astros, as well as some pretenders such as the Toronto Blue Jays.
One team that is tough to put in either category is our beloved Philadelphia Phillies. While most of the city wanted to run manager Gabe Kapler after starting the season with a 1-3 record through the first four games, the Phillies have since gone on to win 13 out of their next 17. In this blog, we’re going to highlight the bright spots so far and what to look forward this season.
Following the run of NL East titles, the Phillies felt like a ship out to sea with no captain. After the firing of Charlie Manuel, the organization looked toward Ryne Sandberg to usher in the new era. After just two seasons, Sandberg stepped down and was replaced by Pete Mackanin, who would also only last two seasons. Entering the 2017 offseason, the Phillies knew they had to find the next coach to take this young team to the next level. Gabe Kapler made a huge splash when he arrived in Philadelphia with a desire to create a fun locker room and enough analytics to remind us of Chip Kelly.
The late spring training signing of Jake Arrieta made a lot of people question if the Phillies believe they are a year or two closer to contending than expected. The former Cy Young winner who parted ways with 2016 World Series winning Chicago Cubs, surprised many by choosing Philadelphia over the Washington Nationals. Through three starts, Arrieta looks like he did in his Windy City days and offers a lot of leadership for future ace, Aaron Nola.
Despite having an impressive Spring Training, the young elite middle infielder expected to start the season in AAA until the organization gained another year of control over him. However, days before the start of the season, Kingery inked himself a six-year, 24-million dollar contract. With club options that could turn into 66 million over nine seasons, the two sides struck up a deal that benefited both. The Phillies just locked down a promising young talent for the bulk of his prime for cheap, while Kingery was able to secure himself guaranteed money at a young age.
Could the Phillies take home the hardware in October? Probably not. But that can’t stop you from becoming a champion. Anyone looking for a leading trophy supplier in PA should look no further than Spike’s Trophies.
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