Don’t let it twist The Padres are a good baseball team. Very good.
But they’re not the Dodgers.
Not even close.
Barely a week after securing a playoff spot on the third-to-last day of the season, the Phillies suddenly even have money to reach their first World Series since 2008 after the Padres defeated the vaunted Dodgers with a five-heat rally in the seventh inning to set up a championship series showdown between the two lowest-seeded National League wild cards.
The Dodgers had entered the postseason as suspected World Series favorites after winning a franchise-record 111 games in the regular season. With the second-largest payroll in the National League and a roster that includes four former league Most Valuable Player Awards, she and the Mets were the two biggest reasons to question whether the Phillies were genuine World Series contenders.
Now the league’s top four seeds will sit at home while the Phillies and Padres go head-to-head in a best-of-seven series, with the winner advancing to the World Series.
San Diego was one of baseball’s biggest stories in the second half of the season after an aggressive trade-deadline performance that saw them add the sport’s brightest young star in slugger Juan Soto, as well as a trio of other upgrades.
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But the Padres’ big trade-deadline acquisitions didn’t have the impact in the second half of the year that many expected.
Soto, who finished second in 2021 NL MVP voting, hit just .236 with .778 OPS and six homers after the Nationals traded him to San Diego along with first baseman Josh Bell. At the time of the deal, Soto had .894 OPS and 21 homers. Bell also struggled, hitting just .192 with .587 OPS in 53 games with the Padres after leaving Washington with .301 averages and .877 OPS.
The story was very similar for Marquee Closer Josh Hader, who posted a 7.31 ERA in 19 appearances for San Diego.
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The Padres went 29-27 in their last 56 games and spent much of September battling with the Phillies and the Brewers for the wild card position. San Diego finished the year just two games ahead of the Phillies overall.
Sportsbook have the Phillies and Padres as a 50/50 offer. Caesar’s Sportsbook had both teams at -110 to advance to the World Series while FanDuel had it at -115 on Sunday morning.