We’re jumping to the National League this week, clearly displaying your typical East Coast media bias by remaining in the East Division of the Senior Circuit.

Biggest Additions: Cliff Lee, Delwyn Young, Eddie Bonine

Biggest Subtractions: Jayson Werth, Chad Durbin, Jamie Moyer, Greg Dobbs, Mike Sweeney, Jayson Werth’s magnificent beard

Offseason Review: When you look two of their additions this offseason, you probably wouldn’t think all that much about it.  Delwyn Young has some talent, but has yet to really prove himself at the big league level.  Eddie Bonine…. well, I got nothing on him… and neither do you.  However, it’s that other name that makes their offseason so successful.  The Phillies seemed to have snuck in at the last minute and stolen Cliff Lee away from both the Yankees and the Rangers.  Not only was it the biggest pitching free agent signing of the offseason, it was a move that made the Phillies a very difficult team to beat over the course of the season and in a short series… you know, like the playoffs.

Season Preview: Not long ago, Jimmy Rollins said that the Phillies were going to win 100+ games this season.  As much as I hate that kind of bragging, I wouldn’t be surprised if they did.  Thanks to the Lee signing and the Oswalt deadline deal at the end of last year, the Phillies have a rotation that consist of three #1 starters, and another guy who could be a #1 on a lot of teams.  We’ll call him a #1b starter – Hamels can be good, but he hasn’t shown the consistency over the course of a season to be a #1 just yet.  And then, well, there’s Joe Blanton, whose pitching is a lot like his name, but with their offense, he should get about 7-10 wins.  Basically, the Phillies took the if-you-can’t-beat-them-join-them philosophy for the 2011 season.  They got beat by the Giants’ pitching, so they improved their pitching in a big way.  Their starters alone should be good for about 80 wins, and the bullpen and offense will pick up the rest.  I don’t quite agree with Rollins because they are going to give away a few games, especially once they lock up the division in September.

Final Record: 98-64, 1st place in NL East, best overall record in National League

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