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Coming into the 2022 season the Philadelphia Phillies made several high-profile acquisitions in an attempt to compete in a stacked NL East.
The Atlanta Braves won the World Series last season and retained most of their core group, outside of replacing Freddie Freeman with Matt Olson.
The New York Mets, meanwhile, brought in superstar starter Max Scherzer in free agency and added key contributors like Starling Marte, Mark Canha and Chris Bassitt.
In order to keep pace, Phillies management signed Kyle Schwarber, Nick Castellanos and brought in Corey Knebel to be the closer.
Through the first 51 games of the 2022 season, however, the Phillies had been a surprising disappointment. Stumbling to a 22-29 record with some high-profile bullpen meltdowns such as blowing a six-run lead to the Mets in the 9th inning.
The team’s struggles led to the firing of manager Joe Girardi a week ago, making him the first manager to lose his job this season.
JOE GIRARDI FIRED FROM THE 22-29 PHILLIES
The Phillies haven’t lost since.
They swept the Los Angeles Angels, then went to Milwaukee and swept the Brewers, before beating the Diamondbacks Friday night, 7-5.
After replacing Girardi with interim manager Rob Thomson, the team has crawled all the way back to a .500 record at 29-29. Although with the Mets and Braves also hot of late, they remain 9 games back in the division and in third place.
Thomson’s 7-0 run to start his managerial career is the first time that’s been accomplished since 2003, when Felipe Alou led the Giants to a similarly successful start.
The baseball season still has more than 100 games remaining, but so far the Phillies’ move to fire Joe Girardi could not have worked out better.