By Spike Eskin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In the last week, the Phillies have gone from 125-1 odds to win the World Series, to 40-1 on Wednesday, to 22-1 on Tuesday. Their probability of making the playoffs has gone from one tenth of 1%, to 1%, to 1.5%, to 3% to 5% in the last week as well.
As the odds get shorter, and the percentages get higher, the Phillies are making believers out of not just fans, but baseball experts as well. “I think the Phillies have a terrific chance at [the playoffs,]” MLB Network’s Peter Gammons told 94WIP’s Angelo Cataldi and the WIP Morning Show on Thursday.
The Phillies were 8 1/2 games out of the final wild card spot in the National League on August 8th, and on September 13th, they sit just three games out of that spot. “Now, all of the sudden, you have good guys that have proven they could pitch great under pressure, and I throw Papelbon in that group, because I believe he is a great prime-time closer,” Gammons said.
Another team that has been nearly as hot as the Phillies are the Milwaukee Brewers, who are also three games out of that second wild card spot. “I think Milwaukee is actually more dangerous than many people realize, but they could really hit. I think Pittsburgh is just too beaten up at this point to get there. I think the Phillies, Brewers—they have great shots at this thing,” Gammons said.
If the Phillies are going to make a run, their next seven games are primed for them to do so, with four in Houston and two in New York against the Mets. The Mets have struggled since the All-Star break, and Houston is by far the worst team in baseball.
“If they go 6-1, they’re right in this thing,” Gammons said. The Phillies have a legitimate chance, and it’s really fun to watch, and it’s really fun to think about–alright, they get into October and Halladay, and Lee, Hamels, everybody is healthy, and all the sudden they are taking all these young relievers, and now they can get to Papelbon. It’s amazing, but it’s something you can dream on.”