MLB Futures: Phillies 2017 Odds Preview

Odubel Herrera's back with sunglasses and smiling

Wednesday, October 19, 2016 8:56 PM GMT

The Philadelphia Phillies had yet another dismal campaign this season but hope springs eternal for the next season and below we preview the Phillies and their MLB odds for 2017.

 Patience Waning for Phillies Fans

In 2011 the Phillies posted 102 regular season wins but were bounced from postseason contention by the wildcard, and eventual World Series victory, St. Louis Cardinals. The following season Philadelphia dipped to 81-81 and since then has been among the worst teams in the league. That string of futility continued last season as the Phillies mustered only 71 wins against 91 losses.

But despite all those defeats, if you were to have blindly backed Philadelphia in your MLB picks throughout the season, you would have been down only 1.5 units after 162 games. That is a perfect example of how the playing field levels when a bad team gets favorable money line odds in the different sportsbooks. At times it takes a leap of faith to back the big underdogs but if you pick your spots, you can have a successful season and fatten your wallet. That may be of some consolation to bettors but certainly not to Philly fans with only an emotional, rather than financial, investment in the club.


What’s Next in 2017?

Next season the Phillies will say goodbye to longtime first baseman Ryan Howard and give him a $10,000,000 parting gift. Former catcher Tommy Joseph will most likely be the heir apparent at first base while starting pitcher Charlie Morton is the only other player with a team option. Morton’s chances of remaining a member of the Phillies are dicey after an injury-plagued season and will be $9.5 million on the books if the team chooses to keep him or $1 million if they buy him out.

General Manager Matt Klentak has consistently maintained that the team will look for short-term solutions and patch their needs until a bigger and better free agent class comes to bear. That doesn’t sound like a winning formula for 2017 and it appears that patience will remain a virtue for all the Philadelphia fans who have pined for a World Series winner since their last one in 2008.

The infield positions appear to be more solid with a combination of veterans and aspiring youngsters there to fill the void. However, the composition of their outfield is unclear and fluid with only center fielder Odubel Herrera as a mortal lock for a starting spot. There will be plenty of free agent options but don’t look for the Phillies to tie anyone up long term.

It will be interesting to see what the MLB odds makers hang on the Phillies in terms of total wins in the 2017 season but we do know that they will be long shots to win the NL East and would shock the world if they proved to be pennant and World Series contenders.

 

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