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The Philadelphia Phillies Have a Third Ace in Ranger Suárez

Ranger Suárez was as integral to the Philadelphia Phillies World Series run as any other player on the team.
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The Philadelphia Phillies’ run to the World Series likely wouldn’t have transpired without Ranger Suárez.

He meant that much to the team.

Suárez was valuable as a starter, as a reliever and as a fielder. In fact, the argument could be made that Suárez was the best fielding pitcher in the Major Leagues.

Suárez wasn’t nominated for a National League Gold Glove Award because he fell just short of an arbitrary innings threshold.

For a kid who signed at the age of 16 on April 1, 2012, Suárez's ascension through the minor leagues to his current role is something to be admired.

The bigger the moment got in the postseason, the better Suárez performed.

Whether it was tossing 5.0 scoreless innings in Game 3 of the World Series against the Houston Astros, or being called upon to close out a game, Suárez took on the challenge... and succeeded in every way.

“His demeanor out there, he just pitches to his strengths and his ability,” Bryce Harper said. “It's always fun to see him get a groundball or line drive hit back to him. He's so at ease about everything he does. He's just fun to watch."

Suárez went 10-7 with a 3.65 ERA in 29 regular season starts.

In the postseason, he was 2-0 with a 1.23 ERA and a clutch save in the National League Championship Series.

It’s one thing to ask a player to fill multiple roles when the pressure is on in the playoffs.

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It’s quite another to watch a player be ultra-successful in any role.

That’s Suarez.

Looking ahead to the 2023 season, Suárez will likely be the Phillies’ No. 3 starter behind Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola. Knowing that Suárez can be inserted into any role makes him extra valuable.

The way the Venezuela-native has continued to develop, don’t be shocked if he becomes a 15-game winner or beyond to go along with a Gold Glove.

Pitching, especially starting pitching, is essential to have a shot at a deep run in the playoffs.

“He’s done everything for us and he’s done it well,” catcher J.T. Realmuto said. “It looks like he’s playing a child’s game.”

There’s no reason to believe that Suárez will regress in any way.

If he can keep ascending, the Phillies will reap the benefits.

With another playoff berth very likely.

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