Says Michael Baumann of The Ringer:
The fact that they are still in playoff contention has a lot to do with this year’s expanded playoff format, as the Phils currently sits tied for the no. 9 position in the National League. But in the crowded NL playoff setup, the Phillies are only a half game behind no. 6 Miami for what would have been the last playoff spot in a normal season; this is by no means a bad team.
It just has one bad component. And here, the word “bad” is something of an understatement.
This year’s Phillies, playoff contenders with less than a week to go in the season, have a collective bullpen ERA of 7.11. That’s not only the worst in baseball, that’s the second-worst bullpen ERA in MLB history, behind only the 1930 Phillies, who posted an ERA of 8.01.