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‘We still haven’t clicked on all cylinders yet’: Nick Castellanos’ bold Phillies warning to rest of MLB

Nick Castellanos, Phillies, Phillies Wild Card playoffs, Phillies trade deadline

The Philadelphia Phillies are playing some excellent baseball of late, winning five of six games on their road trip after a 3-1 victory over the defending champion Atlanta Braves on Wednesday. The Phillies got to 56-48 with the win, putting them a half-game up on the St. Louis Cardinals for the third and final Wild Card spot in the National League.

Nick Castellanos was the hero for the Phillies on Wednesday, smacking a two-out home run in the eighth inning to beat Atlanta. With Philadelphia rolling and getting reinforcements, Castellanos sent a warning to the rest of MLB.

“We still haven’t clicked on all cylinders yet, and we’re in contention,” Castellanos said, per Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. “We’re a playoff team.”

The Phillies had themselves a busy trade deadline, acquiring Noah Syndergaard, David Robertson, Brandon Marsh and Edmundo Sosa. They’re also in line to get some key players back from injury, with Jean Segura set to return Thursday and superstar Bryce Harper hopefully back later in August. Harper had the pins removed from his surgically repaired thumb earlier this week and is throwing again.

it looks like it’s going to be a heated battle for that final Wild Card spot between Philadelphia and whichever team doesn’t win the NL Central between St. Louis and the Milwaukee Brewers. The Braves have a commanding lead for the first Wild Card slot at 3.0 games ahead of the San Diego Padres, who just won the trade deadline by acquiring Juan Soto, Josh Bell and Josh Hader as headline pieces. The Phillies are 3.5 games behind the streaking Padres.

The fading San Francisco Giants are 5.5 games behind Philadelphia, so, yeah, it’s looking like it’s going to be Phillies vs. Cardinals/Brewers for that final NL playoff spot. Though if Castellanos is right, perhaps Philly will make a big push up the standings and get even higher.