PHOENIX – It’s hard to argue that the Philadelphia Phillies aren’t the best or most formidable team in the National League heading towards the postseason.
However, one baseball analyst believes the Arizona Diamondbacks should hope to face the Phillies in the first round because it would be their best chance to beat them.
“Maybe the Diamondbacks have a better chance at the Phillies in a five game series than a seven game series. Maybe secretly you need to be rooting to face them in the first round,” said Tim Kurkjian on the Arizona Sports 620’s Burns and Gambo show on Tuesday.
The analyst points to the Phillies superior starting pitching depth as why it would be better to face them in a shorter series where the D-backs top two starters could hold their own against Philly’s top two starters.
“Maybe Ian Kennedy beats Roy Halladay and Daniel Hudson dials one up and beats Cliff Lee. Unlikely, but if that happens, then you’ve got them on the ropes as opposed to a seven game series where you’re going to have a hard time keeping them on the ropes at all,” said Kurkjian.
It’s true considering Kennedy and Hudson might be able to outpitch Halladay and Lee where it would be less likely in a longer series for Joe Saunders and Josh Collmenter to battle against Cole Hamels and Roy Oswalt.
However, no matter if it’s a five or seven game series against the Phillies, Arizona would be severe underdogs against them.
“I don’t think the Diamondbacks or anybody is going to beat the Phillies in the National League,” said Kurkjian.