MLB Philadelphia Phillies

Early Grades for Philadelphia Phillies’ Starting Rotation, Bullpen

Early Grades for Philadelphia Phillies' Starting Rotation and Bullpen

Philadelphia Phillies
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The Phillies are looking to be a dark horse team this year out of the National League East and that all starts with the starting rotation. So far, the rotation has been very average while the bullpen hasn't been too great. Based on that, here are the grades for each starting pitcher and the bullpen as a whole.

Cliff Lee - B

Cliff Lee
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Cliff Lee - B

Cliff Lee
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Record: 2-2
4.00 ERA
1.556 WHIP
28:2 strikeout-to-walk ratio

Lee hasn't been as sharp as normal, but he's hitting his spots like he always does. He's striking out 14 times more batters than he's walking, which is incredible. That being said, the Phillies still need him to show his dominance in order for them to make a playoff run.

A.J. Burnett - B+

A.J. Burnett
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A.J. Burnett - B+

A.J. Burnett
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Record: 0-1
2.74 ERA
1.565 WHIP
15:16 strikeout-to-walk ratio

Burnett, who was signed in the offseason is off to a pretty nice start in the city of Brotherly Love. Although he's walked more players than he's struck out, he's limiting damage and not letting teams get big innings on him. As long as he can continue that, he should be in good shape.

Kyle Kendrick - B

Kyle Kendrick
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Kyle Kendrick - B

Kyle Kendrick
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Record: 0-1
3.50 ERA
1.444 WHIP
14:6 strikeout-to-walk ratio

Kendrick seems like he could be coming into his own this series. He's always been a promising young pitcher for the Phillies, but he's never quite put everything together. He has pitched decently so far and will look to build on that as the season goes on.

Roberto Hernandez - B

Roberto Hernandez
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Roberto Hernandez - B

Roberto Hernandez
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Record: 1-0
3.86 ERA
1.347 WHIP
17:8 strikeout-to-walk ratio

Hernandez, formerly Fausto Carmona, has been a pleasant surprise for the Phillies so far this season. He has been very solid and a more than capable No. 4 starter. If he can continue to provide them with pitching depth, that unit can be better than expected.

Cole Hamels - F

Cole Hamels
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Cole Hamels - F

Cole Hamels
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Hasn't played this season due to injury.

If you don't go to class, you can't pass the class right? Well, Hamels is injured again and hasn't appeared this season. It seems like his career has steadily gone downhill since having dominant seasons when the Phillies reached the World Series. He will have to come back strong for Philadelphia to have a serious shot at the playoffs.

Bullpen - C

Jonathan Papelbon
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Bullpen - C

Jonathan Papelbon
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The bullpen is just 4-for-8 in save opportunities, although closer Jonathan Papelbon is 4-for-5 in such situations. He has an inflated ERA of nearly 5.00 though and those saves could start turning into blown saves if he doesn't limit how many runners he's putting on base. The bullpen as a whole has been average at best and is an area the Phillies need to improve going forward.