The Philadelphia Phillies had a busy 2019 offseason, highlighted by signing Bryce Harper to a then-record-breaking 13-year, $330 million contract while acquiring stars like J.T. Realmuto via trade. Despite the immense amount of talent they acquired, the Phillies failed to live up to the preseason hype they garnered and would ultimately finish the 2019 season with a middling 81-81 record.
While disappointing, Philadelphia's underwhelming performance last season doesn't truly speak to the kind of talent the club has. FanDuel Sportsbook seems to be putting a lot of weight into those results, though, as the Phillies' projected win total for the 2020 season sits at 85.5 games.
Philly's core has remained largely intact this offseason, which could be a factor in its win total sitting so close to last year's finish, but the additions the club made this offseason cannot go unnoticed.
The Phillies now have Joe Girardi at the helm — a World Series-winning manager — and they made two underrated moves in free agency, signing starting pitcher Zack Wheeler and shortstop Didi Gregorius (.790 OPS since 2017).
The addition of Wheeler (4.7 WAR, 3.96 ERA in 2019) alone should go a long way in improving a Phils rotation that ranked 11th in the NL in ERA (4.64) last season, which is a scary thought when you remember that Cy Young-winner Jake Arrieta and staff ace Aaron Nola will also toe the rubber every fifth day this season.
While making the playoffs is obviously the team's goal, Philadelphia just needs to finish the 2020 season six over .500. Taking into account their improved starting staff and the offensive talent already in their projected lineup, it's hard to see this team finish with 81wins once again.
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Mike Esposito is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Esposito also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username espo6891. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.