The Phillies came into Atlanta this weekend winners of four straight and riding about as high as a team 14 games out of first place can ride. It didn’t take long for the Braves to put an end to that, though, sweeping the Phils in three ugly games and dropping them 16 1/2 games out of first.
The offense was at the heart of the problems for the Phillies as they managed to score just four runs in the three-game set. Howard was 1-for-11 with eight strikeouts. Rollins and Utley combined to go 3-for-23. Wigginton and Fontenot started the first two games at third and went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in the series.
Hamels lasted just five innings in the opener, but it was long enough for him to walk six as the Phils lost 6-1. Blanton pitched well in the second game, allowing just two runs over seven innings, but Mike Minor was even better and the Phils fell 2-1.
Yesterday Halladay again didn’t look like Halladay and Diekman allowed three runs in less than an inning after he left. The Braves won 6-2.
The Phillies are 45-57 on the year after losing to the Atlanta Braves 6-2 yesterday afternoon. The Braves sweep the three-game set. The Phils are in last place in the NL East, 16 1/2 games behind the first place Nationals.
Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing three runs on six hits and a walk. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and two home runs. He struck out seven.
Halladay hasn’t gotten an out in the seventh inning in any of his last five starts, throwing to a 7.20 ERA and allowing six home run in 25 innings. He has made three starts since returning from the DL and thrown to a 5.82 in those outings.
He got the first two in the bottom of the first before Jason Heyward homered to right, putting the Braves up 1-0. Chipper Jones followed with a single and Freddie Freeman walked, putting two men on for Dan Uggla. Uggla doubled to left, scoring Jones (2-0) and moving Freeman up to third. David Ross was next and struck out, but on a wild pitch that allowed Ross to reach base. With runners on the corners, Halladay got Paul Janish to pop to Howard in foul territory to end the inning.
Pitcher Tim Hudson reached on an infield single to start the second. He moved up to second on a ground out by Michael Bourn and up to third on a ground out by Martin Prado. Halladay struck out Heyward to leave him at third.
Chipper started the third with a homer to right. 3-0. Ross singled with two outs, but Halladay got Janish looking to leave Ross stranded.
The lead was cut to 3-1 when Halladay set the Braves down in order in the fourth.
He struck out Heyward and Jones in a 1-2-3 fifth.
The Phillies had cut the lead to 3-2 when Halladay pitched the sixth. He again set Atlanta down in order.
Diekman started the seventh. Righty Tyler Pastornicky hit for pitcher Chad Durbin and singled to right. Bourn bunted him to second with the first out and Prado moved him to third with a single. Heyward was next and hit a ball that Diekman didn’t handle for an error. Pastornicky scored (4-2) and Prado went to second. Chipper was next and grounded to second with the runners moving up to second and third. Freeman followed with a single to left, scoring both of them. 6-2. Kendrick took over for Diekman and walked both Uggla and Ross to load the bases. He got Janish to pop to Howard in foul territory to end the inning.
None of the runs charged to Diekman were earned. He didn’t pitch well, though. He got one out that they gave him on a bunt. Other than that he faced five batters — three singled, one reached on an error and the other grounded out. He has allowed nine runs in 6 1/3 innings in his nine July appearances. Four of the nine runs that he has allowed have been unearned.
Kendrick walked two while getting just one out, but still hasn’t been charged with a run in 14 2/3 innings in July.
Papelbon pitched the eighth. He walked pinch-hitter Eric Hinske to start the frame, but got the next three behind him. Mayberry made a fantastic diving play coming in on a line drive hit by Heyward for the third out.
Papelbon has struck out five in three scoreless innings over his last three appearances.
Two innings overall for the pen in which they allow three runs, all unearned, on three hits and three walks while striking out two. Diekman threw 22 pitches, Papelbon 17 and Kendrick 13.
The Phillies lineup against righty Tim Hudson went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Ruiz (6) Nix (7) Pierre (8) Frandsen. Nix starts in right with Pence on the bench against the righty. The righty Frandsen starts at third with Fontenot on the bench. Pierre in left.
Victorino singled with one out in the top of the first. Utley flew to center for the second out before Victorino was thrown out trying to steal to end the frame.
Down 2-0, the Phillies went in order in the second.
Frandsen singled with one out in the third. Halladay struck out trying to bunt him to second for the second out. Rollins went down on a ball handled by the catcher Ross to set the Phillies down.
It was 3-0 when Victorino led off the fourth with a homer to right. 3-1. Utley, Howard and Ruiz went in order behind him.
First home run for Victorino since June 8.
Pierre and Frandsen singled back-to-back with one out in the fifth, putting runners on the corners. Again Halladay tried to bunt and couldn’t, fouling off strike three for the second out. Rollins flew to center to leave both runners stranded.
Nothing for the Phils after putting men on first and third with one out. Halladay 0-for-2 trying to bunt.
Victorino singled to start the sixth. Utley and Howard went down behind him before Victorino stole second. Ruiz singled to center, scoring Victorino to cut the lead to 3-2. Lefty Jonny Venters came in to pitch to Nix. Pence hit for Nix and moved Ruiz to second with a single. Mayberry hit for Pierre against the lefty Venters. Righty Chad Durbin came in to face Mayberry. The runners moved up to second and third on a passed ball before Mayberry grounded to second to set the Phillies down.
The Phillies went in order in the seventh. Fontenot hit for Halladay and Durbin struck him out swinging for the second out.
The Phils were down 6-2 when they hit in the eighth. Lefty Eric O’Flaherty struck out Victorino and Howard while setting them down in order.
Pence singled off of righty Cristhian Martinez with one out in the ninth. Mayberry grounded into a double-play behind him to end the game.
Rollins was 0-for-4 in the game and 2-for-12 with a walk and a double in the series. He’s hitting 251/309/397 on the season. He’s 8-for-his-last-48 (.167).
Victorino 3-for-4 in the game with a solo home run, which was the only extra-base hit for the Phillies. 6-for-12 with a double and a home run in the series. 385/429/635 over his last 58 plate appearances (20-for-52 with four walks, four doubles, three triples and a home run).
Utley 0-for-4 to drop his average on the year to .235. 1-for-11 with a walk and a home run in the series. 235/327/459 on the year. He’s hitting 222/323/426 against righties.
Howard was 0-for-4 and struck out three times. 1-for-11 with eight strikeouts in the series. 214/323/464 on the year.
Ruiz 1-for-4 with an RBI. 2-for-8 with a walk and a double in the series. 8-for-his-last-32 (.250). 342/407/569 on the year.
Nix 0-for-2 with a strikeout. 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in the game. 302/362/528 for the year. 1-for-7 with four strikeouts since returning from the DL. Pence didn’t start but was 2-for-2 in the game and 4-for-9 in the series. 271/336/447 for the season.
Pierre 1-for-2 in the game and 1-for-5 in the series. 227/277/273 over his last 48 plate appearances. 306/346/373 for the year.
Frandsen 2-for-3 in his first action with the Phillies. Wigginton 0-for-5 with four strikeouts in the series. Fontenot was 0-for-3 in the series and struck out twice.
The Phillies don’t play today. Nats tomorrow.