Dominic Brown returns for his age 26 season, looking to improve on an impressive 2013. Credit: Getty Images
It does not come as a surprise that many baseball analysts and fans think of the Phillies as elderly and washed up.
After all, the framework of the team is in its mid-30s, a group of one time All-Stars and World Series champions who are battling health issues as well as declining skills.
Jimmy Rollins, the MVP in 2007, hasn’t hit above .270 for five seasons now, and the 2006 MVP Ryan Howard, hasn’t hit more than 30 homers in three years.
But nearly half the projected 2014 roster is likely to have its best years still ahead.
The outfield this year, even with new import 36-year-old Marlon Byrd, still has the potential to be very productive with Dominic Brown, 26, fresh off a career best season and speedy Ben Revere, 25, looking to lock up his spot as the Phillies’ long-term centerfielder.
Several other young players have the chance to make an impact this year, like first baseman and outfielder Darin Ruf, 27; outfielder Cesar Hernandez, 23; third baseman Cody Asche, 23, and shortstop Freddy Galvis, 24.
The pitching staff too has many arms in their 20s, like Cuban free agent acquisition Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, 27, who has the opportunity to be a top three starter for the Phillies.
Antonio Bastardo is still just 28-years-old and Jonathan Pettibone is only 23-years-old, vying for a spot in the rotation.