The Phillies’ Bad Offense Is Back With A Vengeance

Before the All-Star Break, the Phillies went on a wholly unexpected offensive tear. The offensive heroes were guys like Peter Bourjos, Cody Asche, Cameron Rupp, and Cesar Hernandez, so it’s hard to muster any surprise that the Phillies offense has crashed back to earth. The team entered play on Wednesday afternoon with a .208/.270/.317 team slashline through the first 12 games of the second half. It won’t surprise you to learn that their team 56 wRC+ is the worst of any major league team since the All-Star Break. Just how bad is a team 56 wRC+? Ryan Howard has a 52 wRC+ this season. Yes, since the All-Star Break, the Phillies as a team have been roughly as productive at the plate as Ryan Howard has all season.

In order to get a sense of how dramatic the change in offensive performance has been, I charted the team’s OPS the season in rolling ten game chunks beginning with games #1-#10 (April 4th to April 14th) and going all the way through games #93-102 (July 17th to July 26th). The results are a graphical illustration of what you likely already know to be true:

2016 Phillies Rolling OPS

Over the course of the season, the Phillies offensive performance has largely vacillated between a .600 and .700 OPS, but on the strength of that surprising surge in June, their season OPS is .678, an achievement in futility surpassed this year only by the Atlanta Braves’ .651 OPS.

The good news, in so much as any exists for a team that is ultimately living down to expectations, is that they are expected to begin adding reinforcements prior to the weekend series against the Atlanta Braves. First up is expected to be Aaron Altherr, whose minor league rehab assignment ends today. In the coming weeks, the Phillies could also be prepared to add top prospects J.P. Crawford and Nick Williams. At the very least, it will be hard for the new additions to make the Phillies offense much worse than it already is.

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  1. Romus

    July 27, 2016 01:51 PM

    Cesar Hernandez is starting to swing a good bat lately…unfortunately he negates that after he reaches first base and finds someway of getting picked off, caught stealing or over running a bag or two. He must have the one season record as a Philly in base path snafus. It has become almost comical waiting and watching him on the bases.

  2. Bob

    July 28, 2016 09:59 AM

    Cameron Rupp has been a pleasant surprise. I was not expecting the year he is having.

  3. Carmine

    July 28, 2016 10:22 AM

    Altherr, Crawford and Williams by themselves will not solve all the problems. At some point, Klentak will have to go to the trade, free agent and international markets. The question is: When is the right time?

    • Pete

      July 28, 2016 10:20 PM

      That depends directly on the speed of development of those three guys and the young on the MLB roster now. Hopefully, after the 2017 season, but no later than after the 2018 season; otherwise, it means a significant number of these guys have failed.

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