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May 21, 2024

MLB power rankings roundup: The Phillies keep rolling as baseball's best

As the Phillies' tear continues, and as more contributions step up throughout the lineup, the higher up many rankings they go.

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Garrett-Stubbs-Nick-Castellanos-Phillies-Nationals-Sweep-5.19.24-MLB.jpg Eric Hartline/USA TODAY Sports

Garrett Stubbs and Nick Castellanos celebrating another Phillies sweep.

The schedule kept moving and the Phillies kept winning.

They swept the Nationals over the weekend, and moving on to the next series against the defending champion Rangers beginning Tuesday night, the Phils still hold the best record in baseball at 34-14 and are leading the NL East over the Braves by a decent five-game margin. 

They're getting contributions from everywhere, winning games in different ways, and beating the teams they should be able to beat.

Those are all the marks of a good club and are all reflected in the latest wave of power rankings, many of which have the Phillies at the top this go around. 

Here's a look... 1st

The last time the Phillies started this well, the 1993 team was on its way to the NL pennant and becoming Philadelphia sports legend. 

Will Leitch sees some parallels and wants a couple more: 

Some more historical Phillies love: Their 34-14 start is the best start to a season they’ve had since their beloved 1993 team, which, if you’re into this sort of stuff, raised its record to 34-14 by beating the Rockies 18-1 in Denver in a game that featured two home runs from Darren Daulton and one from winning pitcher Tommy Greene (one of four he hit in his career). To keep the 1993 vibes going, we suggest all current Phillies grow out curly mullets and play “Whoomp! (There It Is)” before every at-bat. []

Pretty sure Stott and Harper have their lockup songs on lock already there. 

ESPN: 2nd

ESPN's panel of baseball writers and analysts had the Phillies behind the Dodgers late last week, and at the time, David Schoenfield drew comparisons to another previous Phils club from 1976, who set the record for the franchise's best start with a couple of its greatest names ever.

Wrote Schoenfield:

The Phillies have soared to the best record in the majors thanks to a 15-3 stretch that saw them outscore opponents by 59 runs. At 30-13 heading into Wednesday's game, it ranks as the second-best record through 43 games in franchise history -- the 1976 Phillies started 32-11 on their way to 101 wins and an NL East title. Those Phillies had Steve Carlton and Mike Schmidt, two Hall of Famers. These Phillies have Ranger Suarez and Alec Bohm filling the roles of ace lefty and hard-hitting third baseman. Suarez continues to baffle opposing hitters with a 8-0 record and 1.37 ERA in eight starts while Bohm is hitting .331 with 35 RBIs in 43 games. [ESPN]
And both performing as consistently well as they've been have played a big part into why the Phillies have stormed out of the gate.

CBS Sports: 1st

The Phillies held on to the top spot in CBS Sports' rankings, with the belief from Matt Snyder that they'll be hanging around for quite a while. 

Again, Bohm's playing a big part in that.

Wrote Synder:

Alec Bohm now has 42 RBI, which puts him on pace for 142 this season. Forget about the single-season club record, though, because Chuck Klein drove home 170 in 1930. [CBS Sports]
Might get him an All-Star nod though.

MORE: Kody Clemens' surge, Matt Strahm's dominance, more Phils thoughts

Bleacher Report: 1st

The Phillies are stacked, and while they still have all the expensive stars, it's the homegrown talent that's been leading the charge.

Wrote Joel Reuter:

In a lineup loaded with high-profile veterans and a rotation stacked with high-priced arms, it's Alec Bohm, Bryson Stott and Ranger Suárez who have been arguably the three best players on the Phillies roster this year. The emergence of that trio alongside all the team's established star power is a big reason why they sport the best record in baseball more than a quarter of the way into the season. [B/R]

Stott especially has turned it on of late, hitting .383 with a 1.140 OPS through 15 games for the month of May so far.

The Athletic: 3rd

The Athletic's panel of baseball writers turned the spotlight on to each club's farm system for the latest edition of its power rankings, wondering which prospects are the closest to making a major-league impact. 

For the Phillies, who ranked third behind the Dodgers (1st) and the Yankees (2nd), Andy McCullough sees Griff McGarry as the minor-league to move up this summer.

Wrote McCullough:

The Philadelphia starting rotation has been excellent, and the early returns on 2020 first-round pick Mick Abel with Triple-A Lehigh Valley have been mixed. Abel has struggled to command the baseball and find a rhythm while combating some wretched early spring weather. So it may be more likely the Phillies will receive a mid-summer contribution from McGarry, who has shifted into a bullpen role after stalling out as a starter last season. McGarry’s fastball velocity has been stagnant despite rebuilding his delivery, but at least he is throwing strikes. The team’s best minor-league talent is in the lower levels. Or, in the case of Andrew Painter, recovering from injury. [The Athletic]

The Phillies are going to need more arms as the season wears on, so hey, if he can eventually give them one more option out of the bullpen, they'll definitely take that. 

What they're saying: Everything is clicking for the Phillies

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