The Phillies are winning, the Sixers won the top draft pick, the Flyers made the playoffs and the Eagles have a new coach and possible franchise quarterback.
It’s been a dramatic potential turnaround for Philadelphia’s pro sports teams the last few months – with “potential” being the operative word.
The hope, though, is that the four teams will start taking off – leaving behind a cracked and broken period in Philly pro sports history.
A closer look at the four teams, liberally using the word potential:
Surprisingly strong pitching by a young group of starters and a possible all-star closer in Jeanmar Gomez. Offense remains shaky except for Odubel Herrera and, potentially, recent call-up Tommy Joseph. Manager Pete Mackanin, in his first full year, seems to “get it” with respect to game and player management.
Thanks for tanking, as the Sixers finally landed the No. 1 pick in the draft. The 6-10 Ben Simmons is the likely selection, and he could end up playing the point, filling a major void. Potentially, he could be a generational player, a top five player in the NBA. Sixers bring back Jahlil Okafor (17.5 points per game), Nerlens Noel, maybe Joel Embiid and also have potentially two more first-round picks next year.
The first year of The Hex and Hax Show (Ron Hextall, general manager and Dave Hakstol, coach) surprisingly made the playoffs this spring – a first for a Philly pro sports team since 2014 (also the Flyers). The team has many good, young players, led by high-scoring defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere, a potential superstar. It says here the Flyers will be the next world champion out of Philly, thanks mostly to Hextall’s ability to unload deadwood and on-load talent.
It’s back to the future for the Eagles with Doug Pederson starring as Andy Reid and Carson Wentz starring as Donovan McNabb. No one knows if it will work, but at least there is hope. Besides, Wentz could end up being Andrew Luck 2.0.
There’s that word again.