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Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds – Everyone’s Big Target

Posted by Dale Lalonde on 2/23/2010 1:49:50 PM

In sports betting conversations among baseball fans, one of the hottest topics in Spring Training is if the Philadelphia Phillies – winners of the past two National League pennants – can get back to the Fall Classic for the third straight season and win the world championship for the second time in three years. Philadelphia’s going to be an overwhelming favorite to win its division and return to the MLB playoffs, but postseason baseball is a crapshoot. What are the sportsbook odds that manager Charlie Manuel can guide this group to yet another World Series victory?

 

Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds: +645 To Win World Series
MThe last team to reach three straight World Series was the New York Yankees (1999-2001).
The last team to win the World Series the year after losing it was the 1989 Oakland Athletics.
The last team to win three straight National League pennants was the St. Louis Cardinals (1942-’44).


Batting Lineup – Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds

The Fightin’ Phils have been so thoroughly successful over the past two seasons because they have a lineup with few easy outs and well-distributed power. From the grinders at the top of the lineup – shortstop Jimmy Rollins and centerfielder Shane Victorino – to seventh and eighth hitters who don’t give away at-bats – newly-acquired third baseman Placido Polanco and veteran catcher Carlos Ruiz – this team owns a roster of savvy performers who know how to compete, a skill that most baseball teams lack. The middle of the order – with thumpers like Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth plus the pop of Chase Utley and Raul Ibanez – rightly receives a lot of praise, but the big thing to realize about the Phillies is that with the possible exception of Ruiz in the eight hole, they can do damage from any position in their order.

 

Starting Pitching – Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds

MLB betting experts might say that history will work against the Phillies this year, and that point could well be true. Yet, it seems hard to deny the claim that Philadelphia will have the pitching needed to get to October and then make a deep run in the postseason. Cliff Lee might be a Seattle Mariner after carrying the Phils in the 2009 playoffs, but Roy Halladay has arrived from Toronto to become the team’s new shut-down ace. Having Cole Hamels at the No. 2 spot is a mighty fine arrangement for Mr. Manuel and the rest of the Phils’ coaches.

If there’s a question about this team, it will probably come from the back end of the starting rotation. J.A. Happ turned in a solid rookie season, but it remains to be seen if the young lefty can become as reliable as Hamels has been for the reigning National League champions. One also has to wonder if Jamie Moyer – injured late last season – can still twirl his change-up and baffle N.L. hitters with regularity. The prowess of right hander Joe Blanton, an underappreciated horse at the bottom of the rotation, will once again be tested in the upcoming 2010 season. If Philadelphia can play .500 ball in the games not started by Halladay, Hamels and Happ, the Phils should be in very good shape.

 

Bullpen – Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds

There’s no question that the back end of the bullpen became a big problem for Philly in September of last season, as Manuel was besieged by the local press in the City of Brotherly Love. The Phils’ folksy manager tried to get late-game outs every way he could, as regular closer Brad Lidge struggled after a literally perfect 2008 campaign in which he didn’t blow a single save. Ryan Madson was sometimes asked to close down wins, but the righty has normally been an eighth-inning guy for the Phils. Why is this not as big a problem as one might think? The simple answer is that Lidge pitched over his head in 2008, and had a natural comedown in 2009. The verdict here is that the Phils will be solid in the pen for 2010.

Outlook – Philadelphia Phillies Betting Odds

In terms of winning their division and making the playoffs, the Phils are a virtual shoo-in from an online betting standpoint. No team in the National League East can come close to the well-rounded quality Philadelphia can put on the field. However, as history shows, winning three straight N.L. pennants isn’t easily achieved. The St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers will be very motivated to take the flag away from Charlie Manuel and Co.

 

Projected Finish In Division: First in the NL East

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