Jonathan Papelbon has the Phillies where in his current MLB power rankings?


Things haven’t quite gone to plan for the Phillies so far this season. After Philadelphia’s run to the World Series last year, the Phils are five games under .500 at 27-32 through 59 contests.

There is plenty of blame to go around. Some are questioning Trea Turner’s large contract. Some think that Rob Thomson’s seat should be red-hot. Sure, injuries may have played a part, but the Phillies appear to be more than just a hot streak away from returning to form.

Nevertheless, there are those that still believe in The Fightins, and one of those people is former Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon.

Papelbon joined WEEI’s Rob Bradford on the Audacy Original Podcast “Baseball Isn’t Boring” to give out his current power rankings and his faith in the Phillies may surprise you.

“The Phillies went there last year, fell short, they got a lot of hungry guys,” Papelbon said (25:45 in player above). “I know they’re not playing to their caliber right now, but in my mind, they are a top-10 team.”

Papelbon listed the Phillies as the No. 5 team in his power rankings, ahead of teams like the Dodgers, Braves, and Yankees.

“This is why you have maybe the best power rankings in this history of power rankings,” Bradford chuckled. “You just picked the Philadelphia Phillies – and I’m not saying you’re wrong, because we shouldn’t go by record or how they’re doing yesterday or two days ago. You should go by, as you said, in your gut, in your head this team is going to be good.”

It’s an uphill battle for the Phillies, but it’s something that they’ve done before. Just last year they sat at 22-29 through 51 games. That’s when Joe Girardi was fired and the team went on a 65-46 run to make the playoffs.

None of the Phillies’ star players are really playing up to their potential. Kyle Schwarber is up to 15 home runs after swatting two on Sunday, but he’s batting just .172. Trea Turner is hitting a lowly .232 with a .642 OPS through his first 58 games as a Phillie. J.T. Realmuto and Bryce Harper also aren’t at their best.

All it might take is one or two of those guys to get hot for the team to follow suit, though.

“You got to think outside the box and the brain, man. I’m telling you it’s a long season, man,” Papelbon said. “Granted, power rankings are coming out all the time, blah blah blah, but man, you got to take so much more into consideration than just following the numbers.”

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