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The Phillies Can Beat Good Teams

The talk of the day is that the Phillies are in trouble because they're a) facing a tough stretch of their schedule and b) can't beat good teams. The first part is certainly true, as the Phils are facing the Nationals, Cardinals, Mets, Marlins, Dodgers, and Orioles over the next 20 games. Those are all teams that have won more games than they have lost so far.

But, the second part of this isn't true. The Phillies can beat good teams. They just haven't beaten the Mets this year.

So far, the Phils have played 18 games against teams with winning records. In those 18 games, they've won only 7. A 7-11 record is not a good track record against winning teams.

But, take out the 6 games against the Mets, in which the Phillies are 1-5, and the Phils are 6-6. Break it down further, and you see the Phils are 1-2 against the Giants, who presently sit at 21-20 for the season. Sure, mathematically they're a winning team right now, but really only because they've played an odd number of games.

That leaves us with 9 games against the Marlins, Braves, and Nationals, all leading the Phillies in the NL East. Against those teams, the Phillies have in fact won - they're 5-4. The Phils have outscored those teams 46-39.

I'm no idiot. I know I'm being selective here and removing numbers that work against the narrative I want to tell. But that's pretty much the point here. The season is still incredibly young, and there's no story you can tell with the limited numbers so far.

We do know that, contrary to the story being told, the Phillies can beat and have beaten good teams. They just haven't done that against the Mets (which means nothing about what they'll do against them next week).

At this point in the season, I'm not sure there's anything more interesting to say on this topic than that.