The Phils put together five hits and no earned runs yesterday and it wasn’t enough as the Nats topped them 2-1 to take the three-game set two games to one. Laynce Nix changed the game with a spectacular diving catch on a ball hit by Domonic Brown that ended the top of the sixth with the bases loaded for the Phils.
The game was also memorable because of the early exit of Roy Oswalt. Oswalt was pulled so Brown could hit for him in the sixth, having gone just five innings and thrown 79 pitches. Oswalt doesn’t sound particularly thrilled about the decision.
The Phillies are 34-22 on the year after losing to the Washington Nationals 2-1 yesterday afternoon. They have lost three of four and scored three runs in their last two games.
Oswalt got the start for the Phillies and went five innings, allowing two runs on six hits and two walks. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and a home run. He struck out three. In his nine starts on the year he’s thrown to a 2.70 ERA and a 1.26 ratio, but the Phillies are 4-5.
Roger Bernadina led off the bottom of the first and blooped a single to left. Ian Desmond bunted him to second with the first out before Jayson Werth singled into left, scoring Bernadina to put Washington up 1-0. Laynce Nix flew to left for the second out and Michael Morse flew to right for the third.
It was 1-1 when he started the second. He got Danny Espinosa on a ground ball to second for the first out before Wilson Ramos doubled to right. Alex Cora followed that with a walk. The pitcher John Lannan tried to bunt the runners up a base, but struck out fouling off strike three for the second out. Oswalt struck Bernadina out swinging to leave the runners stranded at first and second.
Oswalt retired Desmond and Werth on a pair of fly balls to right to start the third. Nix was next, though, and he hit an 0-1 pitch out to right-center, putting the Nats back on top at 2-1. Oswalt walked Morse on four pitches and then hit Espinosa with the first pitch of his at-bat, putting men on first and second for Ramos. Ramos grounded to second to end the inning.
Espinosa went 4-for-8 with three home runs in the first two games of the series.
Oswalt got Cora and Lannan to start the fourth before reached on a single on a ball out in front of the plate. Desmond grounded to short for the third out.
Morse doubled to right with two outs in the fifth. Oswalt got Espinosa on a fly ball to right for the third out.
Stutes started the sixth after the Phils hit for Oswalt in the top of the inning. He set Washington down in order, getting Ramos swinging for the first out and Jerry Hairston, who took over for Cora at third in the fifth, on a fly ball to left for the second. Pitcher Jason Marquis hit for pitcher Doug Slaten and flew to center for the third out.
Stutes was back for the seventh and threw another 1-2-3 frame, getting Bernadina looking for the first out, Desmond on a ground ball to short for the second and Werth on a fly ball to center for the third.
Stutes threw two perfect innings and was throwing for the second straight day, lowering his ERA on the year to 2.02. He also threw three days in a row May 23-25.
Bastardo came in to pitch the ninth and got the first two men he faced before walking Espinosa. Ramos grounded to short for the third out.
Three scoreless innings for the pen. Stutes was throwing for the second straight day and threw 29 pitches. Bastardo threw 18 pitches. Both should be available on Friday with the off-day today.
The Phillies lineup against lefty John Lannan went (1) Polanco (2) Mayberry (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Francisco (6) Ibanez (7) Ruiz (8) Valdez. Polanco hits leadoff with Rollins on the bench and Valdez at short. Mayberry plays center and hits second for the first time in his career. Francisco in right against the lefty with Brown on the bench, despite Brown being 10-for-his-last-19. Ruiz catches the day game after catching the night game the night before. After hitting sixth against the righty the day before, he’s dropped to seventh against the lefty.
Polanco led off the game with a single to right, but was erased when Mayberry followed and hit into a double-play. Utley flew to right for the third out.
Down 1-0, Howard led off the second with a double and Francisco walked behind him. Ibanez struck out for the first out, but Ruiz was next and hit a ball to third that Cora didn’t handle for an error. Howard scored to tie the game at 1-1 with Ruiz safe at first and Francisco safe at second. Valdez flew to center and Oswalt grounded to second to leave the runners stranded.
Mayberry was hit by a pitch with one out in the third. Utley flew to right for the second out. Howard was next and he hit a ground ball that Espinosa fielded in shallow right field with the Howard shift on. Mayberry tried to score from second, but Espinosa threw home and Ramos applied the tag to Mayberry to end the inning.
Francisco, Ibanez and Ruiz went down on three ground balls in the fourth. The Phillies were trailing 2-1.
Valdez reached on an error by Hairston at third to start the fifth. Oswalt bunted him to first with the first out before Polanco drew a walk, putting men on first and second for Mayberry. Mayberry hit a ground ball to third with Valdez forced at third for the second out. Utley flew to right to leave the runners at first and second.
Francisco walked with one out in the sixth and the Phils still down a run. Ibanez moved him to second with a single and righty Todd Coffey took over for Lannan. Ruiz flew to right for the first out, with Francisco tagging and moving up to third. Rollins hit for Valdez and walked, loading the bases for Oswalt. Brown hit for Oswalt against the righty Coffey and lined a ball to left-center, with Nix making an unbelievable diving catch to snare the ball and retire the side.
Fantastic catch by Nix changed the game.
The Phils went in order in the seventh and the eighth.
Ruiz flew to center for the first out of the ninth. Rollins was next and put down a pretty bunt that Espinosa tried to bare-hand, but didn’t get cleanly. Rollins had a single. With righty Drew Storen on the mound for Washington, Ross Gload hit for Bastrado and flew to left. Polanco was next and ripped a ball just foul that would have scored Rollins easily, but struck out looking 1-2 to end the game.
Polanco was 1-for-4 with a walk in the game. 5-for-12 with two walks in the three-game set. He’s hitting 319/367/403 for the year.
Mayberry was 0-for-3 and left three men on base. 3-for-11 with a double and a homer in the set. 231/316/365 on the year.
Utley was 0-for-4 in the game and 1-for-10 with three walks in the series. 194/324/323 on the season in 37 plate appearances.
Howard was 2-for-4 with a double, which was the only extra-base hit in the game for the Phils. 4-for-12 with a double and a home run in the set. 252/336/500 for the year. 311/404/622 with three home runs in 52 plate appearances over his last 11 games.
Francisco was 0-for-2 and walked twice. 0-for-3 with two walks in the series. He’s 5-for-his-last-16 with three walks, two doubles and a home run, but hitting just 224/337/385 for the year.
Ibanez was 1-for-4 in the game and 3-for-11 with a walk and a home run in the series. 246/296/427 on the season. 324/348/611 over his last 115 plate appearances.
Ruiz was 0-for-4. 4-for-13 with a double in the series. 250/348/362 on the season. 344/432/469 in 37 plate appearances over his last eight games.
Valdez 0-for-2 in the game and in the series. 242/277/298 on the year. Of the 149 NL players with at least 100 plate appearances this season, Valdez’s .575 OPS is 141st. On the plus side, he’s out-OPSing Dan Uggla (175/241/316).
Rollins was 1-for-1 with a walk in the game and 1-for-10 with a walk in the series. He’s hitting 263/337/357 for the year.
No game today. At Pittsburgh Friday night.