2. Philadelphia Phillies
After years of spending and getting hyped before the season, the Philadelphia Phillies might finally make the postseason. That is, as long as the team doesn’t go ice cold down the stretch and blow their 3.5-game lead as the second Wild Card team in the National League.
Philadelphia is in a good position to make the playoffs and they’re getting hot at the right time … but all it takes is one bad series for the Phillies to suddenly be on the outside looking in. They have 12 games combined against the Braves, Blue Jays and Astros to close the year, so it won’t be easy.
Dodgers fans should be hoping the Phillies hold onto their spot as the second wild-card team in the National League and that they shock one of their NL East foes in the first round. They are a far easier team to beat than the other three teams mentioned in this article and, quite frankly, could end up getting swept by the Dodgers.
There’s nothing about the Phillies that should strike fear in the Dodgers. They have Bryce Harper and some decent other bats, but it’s not an unbearable lineup to face. Their pitching staff is fine, but they don’t have that elite lock-down starter needed to steal a playoff game. Their bullpen is much improved from previous years, but still has holes to attack.
Philadelphia did win four of seven games against the Dodgers this season, but that also came during LA’s worst stretch in May. Things would be far different in a playoff series.