NL East Preview: Philadelphia Phillies

Ryan GaydosSenior Analyst IMarch 24, 2009

CLEARWATER, FL - FEBRUARY 20:  Jimmy Rollins #11 of the Philadelphia Phillies poses for a photo during Spring Training Photo day on February 20, 2009 at Bright House Networks Field in Clearwater, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Yes, the Mets will finally hold off the Phillies to win the NL East this year, I swear.

The Mets have the bullpen now to finish games and hold off late comebacks by teams. The Phillies however might win the wildcard in the National League. They still have Cole Hamels and Ryan Howard, two threats on opposite sides of the ball. Chase Utley will also help out with the dominance of the Phillies along with Jimmy Rollins.

But since Cole Hamels is only one man, the rest of the staff will not get it done. Jamie Moyer will start to falter. Joe Blanton will continue giving up runs and Brett Myers will not be as solid as last year. Brad Lidge will be good in the bullpen as well as Chad Durbin and Ryan Madson.

Will they win the World Series again? Only time will tell.

Keep an eye on: Ronny Paulino, c

Coming off a rather disappointing 40 games in Pittsburgh, Paulino tore up the minor leagues with Indianapolis. He batted .306 in 30 games. With Pittsburgh he only had a .212 average with 18 runs batted in. Paulino will have to battle for the starting catcher job with Chris Coste and Carlos Ruiz.

Projected Lineup
1. Jimmy Rollins, ss
2. Chase Utley, 2b
3. Raul Ibanez, lf
4. Ryan Howard, 1b
5. Shane Victorino, cf
6. Jayson Werth, rf
7. Pedro Feliz, 3b
8. Carlos Ruiz, c

Projected Pitching Staff
1. Cole Hamels, lhp
2. Brett Myers, rhp
3. Joe Blanton, rhp
4. Jamie Moyer, lhp
5. Kyle Kendrick, rhp

Projected Bullpen
Brad Lidge
Ryan Madson
Chad Durbin
Scott Eyre
Clay Condrey
J.C. Romero

Top Prospects
1. Carlos Carrasco, rhp
2. Jason Donald, ss
3. Michael Taylor, of
4. Domonic Brown, of
5. J.A. Happ, lhp