But depending on how the team fares over its next seven games, it soon could be.
After the next seven at Citizens Bank Park, the Phils head west for what sure looks like a difficult 10-game road trip. If the Phillies go limping into those 10 games, it will spell trouble — and not just for the trip, but the season.
The Phils — especially the bullpen — just got done showing their vulnerability against deep and powerful offenses.
Here’s what they’ll get on this 10-game road trip:
· The Rockies, who lead baseball in batting average (.320), on-base percentage (.371), slugging percentage (.494), and feature MVP candidate Carlos Gonzalez (.389 avg.), Troy Tulowitzki (.407 avg.), Michael Cuddyer (.415 avg.) and Justin Morneau (.387 avg.)
· The Dodgers, the defending NL West champions with names such as Hanley Ramirez, Matt Kemp, Adrian Gonzalez, Yasiel Puig, Carl Crawford and Andre Ethier sprayed throughout their order, not to mention quality starting pitching to go with it
· And the Diamondbacks, who have an MVP candidate of their own in Paul Goldschmidt (.370 avg.) and one of baseball’s early home run leaders, Mark Trumbo (5 HRs, 13 RBIs)
That’s power, power and more power on tap for the Phillies’ leaky, questionable and inexperienced bullpen.
One nightmare road swing can crush a season. Entering July 20 last year, the Phils were 49-48, in second place and 6½ games out of first. They then lost eight straight to finish their nine-game trip away from home and the season was gone.
Given the circumstances, the Phillies can’t afford a bad April. They need to play well enough before the July trade deadline approaches to convince management to keep this going.
And that brings us back to these seven upcoming games. If the Phils don't stem the tide before going west, April could be disastrous and the season unsavable.