Dombrowski on Phils: ‘I think we have a good club’


Atlanta — Not surprisingly, Dave Dombrowski is still bullish for the Phillies.

The club’s president of baseball operations gave his reasons before the start of the series against the Braves at Truist Park on Monday. Dombrowski has discussed everything from expensive and inconsistent attacks to coach Joe Girardi to center fielder Odúbel Herrera and more.

“We are our [19-22] record” said Dombrowski. “It could get better. But I think we still have a good club. I think we have a long road ahead. I think we’re realizing it. There are some good things, but better play. You have to do it and get more victories.”

This week is the Phillies’ latest test. They start their 7-game road trip with a 4-game series against the Braves. The rivals in the NL East couldn’t have been more in a different position, despite the same 19-22 record.

The Braves won the World Series last season. The Phillies haven’t made the postseason since 2011. Philadelphia urgently needs to end the drought. The club holds a franchise record salary of $240 million. For the first time in their team’s history, the Phils built an attack that predicted a lot of runs in excess of the luxury tax.

So far it hasn’t delivered as expected. The Phillies finished eighth in baseball with an OPS of .722 on Monday. They were 11th with 4.49 runs per game. However, they had 11 or 1 run or no runs.

“I’m surprised we haven’t been scoring more in a consistent way,” Dombrowski said. “But I think we’re going to score more. As the weather warms up and some players get their swing back, we can score more.” I think there will be.”

Fans are frustrated. They targeted Girardi. They focused on center field, especially Herrera’s play, which is often frustrating. The bullpen is a constant source of irritation.

Dombrowski said, “I never get involved in evaluating managers during the season.” “Basically, as I always tell people, Joe is fine. I talk to Joe. I always communicate with him. I’ll just say this: My support for managers is that they manage. rights? If I hadn’t supported them, they wouldn’t have managed.

“Joe is our manager and I am happy to work with him. Hey, we are all in a position to be dissatisfied with the way the club plays. Joe, me, the players. We have to get better.”

Herrera batted 0.243 with two home runs, eight RBIs, .713 OPS and 104 OPS+. Herrera was kicked off the board 8 feet away on Saturday. He swung on the pitch a few feet in front of home plate and missed. He swung on a pitch between legs in Los Angeles a few weeks ago.

“I think you’re strong against Odúbel,” Dombrowski said. “If you look at him overall, he’s not bad in any way. Last year wasn’t bad. He was league average last year, both defensively and offensively. .. he’s had a bad time aggressively over the past few weeks, but he’s a batting streak.

“It’s not like there are nine stars in different locations. There should be complementary players. I mean, our star players [J.T.] Real Muto, [Rhys] Hoskins, [Jean] Segura, Didi [Gregorius] went out … [Bryce] Harper, [Nick] with Castellanos [Kyle] Schwaber. They are your stars.

“You have to have complementary players. [Herrera is] complementary player. He is not a star.”

The bullpen is 23rd with an ERA of 4.06. You are too often behind in the count. The walk rate is 12.2%, the highest in baseball.

“Our bullpen gets a lot of criticism from time to time, but I think it’s actually been good for us,” Dombrowski said. “The ERA is high, but some of them can have some bad days. The bullpen’s back end threw the ball well. They should do better, but they throw the ball right.

“And we know our defense gets a lot of scrutiny, but actually our defense doesn’t cost us. A few balls fall and you’ll probably say, ‘Okay, somebody else caught it.’ things can be overcome,” he said.

Dombrowski said managing partner John Middleton helped them get off to a rough start. He said he understands it’s a long season. But the team must start winning. The sooner the better.

“We shouldn’t be a team under .500,” Dombrowski said. “We’re there right now … I don’t think anyone is happy with our record, but I think we can be okay.”

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