Tag: Antonio Bastardo

AbsoluteLee unexpected

The Phillies went 12-18 in Cliff Lee’s starts last year, which was odd given that Lee was in the top ten in the NL in ERA, ratio, strikeouts and WAR for pitchers. While Lee was off his outstanding 2011 pace, he was still very good and a lot had to go wrong for the Phillies in his starts for them to go 12-18. A lot did.

Here are some of the lowlights:

  • The Phillies scored 3.60 runs per game in the games started by Lee and 4.36 in the games he did not start. They scored a total of three runs in the first three games he started in 2012 and a total of three runs in the last three games he started in 2012 and the Phils went 0-6 in those games. 3.60 runs per game of offense in their starts is the worst mark for any starting pitcher who started more than one game for the team in ’12 (although Worley was close behind at 3.61 runs of offense per game he started).
  • The Phillies went 10-11 in the 21 games in which Lee delivered a quality start. In those 21 games he threw to a 1.86 ERA with an 0.97 ratio. The Phillies went 52-26 in quality starts that were made by any pitcher other than Lee.
  • The bullpen pitched to a 4.82 ERA with a 1.43 ratio in the 30 games that Lee started. In the 132 games that he didn’t start, the bullpen pitched to a 3.79 ERA with a 1.27 ratio.

So Lee was good, the offense was bad, the bullpen was bad and even when Lee pitched well the Phillies didn’t win. There’s got to be more than a little plain old bad luck in there as well. You wouldn’t expect your team to go 10-11 in the games where their starting pitcher throws to a 1.86 ERA and a ratio under one.

Seven of the 18 games the Phillies lost that Lee started were one-run games.

The Phillies were 4-12 in the first 16 games that Lee started. Over those 16 starts, the Phils managed to lose a game in which Lee threw 10 shutout innings, another in which he struck out 12 while allowing two runs over 7 2/3 innings and a third in which he allowed a run on two hits and a walk over eight frames.

That’s not to say Lee excelled at all times during those first 16 starts. That simply wasn’t the case. Most notably, from June 10 to June 29 (outings 10 to 13 on the year), Lee made four starts bad starts in a row, throwing to a 7.30 ERA in those outings and puffing his ERA on the year from 2.92 to 4.13. After June 29, Lee pitched to a 2.44 ERA over his last 17 starts and the Phils went 9-8 in those games.

Bastardo filed for arbitration yesterday.

The Nats appear to have agreed to a deal with right-handed reliever Rafael Soriano that will pay Soriano $28 million over the next two years. Soriano has been very good in two of the last three years.

This suggests that the Phillies may have interest in right-handed pitcher Brandon Webb. It doesn’t suggests that Webb has become an outfielder. Now 33, Webb had six good years with the Diamondbacks from 2003 to 2008, throwing to a 3.24 ERA over 198 appearances, 197 of which were starts. He has been slowed by shoulder problems since, throwing just 16 innings between the majors and minors since the start of 2009.

The Phillies signed Juan Cruz to a minor league deal. Love this move. I’ve always been a huge fan of Cruz. I forget why, cause his results haven’t been especially good and he walks too many hitters to be consistently successful. Cruz is a 34-year-old right-handed pitcher with a 4.05 ERA and a 1.41 career ratio in 655 innings over 13 years. He’s had several miserable years, including 2003, 2005 and 2009. Over the last three years, he’s made 104 appearances, all in relief, and thrown to a 3.41 ERA with a 1.51 ratio. In 89 2/3 innings, he’s walked 51. His walk rate for his career is 4.8 batters per nine innings. The years when he’s been good he still walked a ton of people, just didn’t allow many hits.


Their better half

In the most recent post, I took a guess at the hitters who might start the year with the Phillies as well as the guys contending for the other spots. Here’s today’s guess about the pitchers:

Other candidates
1 Halladay (R) P Aumont (R)
2 Lee (L) T Cloyd (R)
3 Hamels (L) J De Fratus (R)
4 Kendrick (R) M Schwimer (R)
5 Lannan (L) M Stutes (R)
6 Papelbon (R) BJ Rosenberg (R)
7 Adams (R) E Martin (R)
8 Bastardo (L) J Pettibone (R)
9 JC Ramirez (R)
10 Z Miner (R)
11 J Horst (L)
12 R Valdes (L)
J Diekman (L)
J Savery (L)
M Robles (L)
C Jimenez (L)

Lannan and Bastardo are the guys I feel least sure of among the eight pitchers I have on the team. But I think they both start the year on the staff with Lannan serving as the fifth starter. Halladay, Hamels, Lee, Kendrick, Papelbon and Adams seem like locks if they are healthy, although I think it’s possible, but unlikely, that Kendrick could be pitching out of the pen at the start of the year.

If those eight guys did make the opening day roster for the Phils, it would leave the pitching staff with four open slots (assuming the team starts the year with 12 pitchers).

Of those four spots, one should go to a long man, or at least someone who could pitch more than one inning, and at least one other would go to a lefty.

The Phillies have a lot of options when it comes to the second lefty in the pen. Horst and Valdes were both very good in 2012 and I think it’s possible they both make the team to start the year. If it’s just one of them, I’d give Horst an advantage over Valdes. I think Horst is pretty close to a lock to start the year with the team.

I think the issue of who will be the long man out of the pen is more complicated. Kendrick is the guy best-suited for that role, but the Phillies would likely prefer to have him pitch out of the rotation, coming off of a 2012 in which he threw to a 2.43 ERA over his last ten starts. Cloyd, Ethan Martin or Jonathan Pettibone seem like the candidates to make the team that are mostly likely to be able to give the Phillies more than one inning, but I have a little trouble seeing the Phillies carrying one of them to pitch out of the pen to start the year. My guess at this point would be that the Phillies don’t have a true long man out of the pen to start the year.

So if Horst takes one of the four open spots, that leaves the Phils with three.

The guy I feel next strongest about is Aumont, given the combination of his upside and some promising results in 2012. I’ll slot him into the tenth spot.

I think it’s really wide open after that. At this point I’ll take Valdes, based on his impressive 2012, for the eleventh slot. Beyond that I see it as close to a toss-up between Stutes and De Fratus as front-runners for the final spot. Stutes is coming off of a significant injury that sidelined him for much of 2012 and both should contribute to the team this year. Stutes helped the Phils a lot in 2011 and De Fratus has had several very impressive years in the minors in a row.

I’ll pick De Fratus for the twelfth spot.

So that gives the Phils 12 pitchers — Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Kendrick, Lannan, Papelbon, Adams, Bastardo, Horst, Aumont, Valdes and De Fratus. Five starters, seven relievers. Three lefties out of the pen and no long man in relief.

If that’s the staff heading into 2013, I expect we’ll all feel a whole lot more comfortable with the pitching than we do with the hitting to start the year.

This article from the Phillies web site adds Michael Cuddyer to the list of players the Phils might be pursuing that includes Hairston, Wells and Soriano.

This article suggests that if the outfield situation stays the same, we may see Brown getting a chance to be the everyday guy in right field to start the year with a platoon in left that includes some combination of the lefty Nix and righties Ruf and Mayberry. Mayberry seems like he should be a candidate to get some at-bats at first base against left-handed pitching as well.

There are a bunch of problems in left if that proves to be the case. One is that it’s hugely unlikely that Laynce Nix is going to be able to take all or maybe even most of the at-bats against righties in left field in 2013. Nix is 32 and has never gotten more than 400 plate appearances in a season. Phillie left fielders are going to get around 480 plate appearances against right-handed pitching in 2013. Nix has never had more than 321 plate appearances against righties in a season. So it seems likely that some parts of that platoon would be hitting a lot against righties. I don’t think you want to see a whole lot more of Mayberry hitting against righties given his 229/291/335 line against them in 2012. We’ll see on Ruf. He was 5-for-17 against righties last year with a home run.

The other important problem with Nix as the left-handed part of a platoon in left is that Nix, despite his left-handedness, isn’t exactly a fabulous hitter against right-handed pitching anyway. His career line against righties is 253/297/447. Last year he got just 117 plate appearances against righties, but put up a 248/316/390 line. So Nix probably couldn’t completely man a left-handed platoon in left anyway and if he could, you might not want him to.


Not Ruf enough to whip this world alone

Darin Ruf homered twice last night, but it wasn’t enough for the Phillies as they fell to the Nats 4-2.

Rosenberg came up with a solid effort, getting the start in what was sure to be a bullpen game for the Phils. He pitched well and left after four frames with the score tied at 1-1. The bullpen wasn’t real good after that, though. Lindblom and Bastardo both struggled and the Phils were lucky they combined to allow just three runs over the two innings that they threw.

Ruf’s pair of solo shots accounted for all of the runs the Phillies scored in the game.

The Phillies are 81-80 on the year losing to the Washington Nationals 4-2 last night. The loss snaps a three-game win streak for the Phils. They are in third place in the NL East, 16 games out of first, and have been eliminated from playoff contention.

Rosenberg got the start for the Phillies and went four innings, allowing a run on three hits and two walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out three and dropped his ERA on the year to 6.12.

He struck out Tyler Moore in a 1-2-3 bottom of the first.

Adam LaRoche walked to start the second and moved to second when Chad Tracy followed with a single. Rosenberg struck Mark DeRosa out swinging for the first out before Roger Bernadina walked to load the bases. Rosenberg struck Sandy Leon out swinging for the second out and got the pitcher Tom Gorzelanny on a ground ball to third to leave the bases loaded.

Two walks and a single in the frame, but Rosenberg gets out of it with the help of two big strikeouts. No run for the Nats with one out and a man on third as he gets Leon swinging 0-2.

Rosenberg set the Nats down in order in the third.

The Phillies led 1-0 when LaRoche doubled off of Rosenberg to start the fourth. Tracy moved LaRoche up to third with a ground out before Roger Bernadina singled to left, scoring LaRoche to tie the game at 1-1. Rosenberg picked Bernadina off of first to end the inning.

Diekman started the fifth and gave up a leadoff single to Leon. Switch-hitter Danny Espinosa hit for the pitcher Christian Garcia and struck out swinging for the first out. Steve Lombardozzi was next and grounded to third with Leon forced at second for the second out. Bryce Harper was next and moved Lombardozzi to third with a single to right. Harper stole second before Diekman struck Moore out swinging 3-2 to leave the runners at second and third.

Diekman allows two hits in the frame, but puts up a zero. He’s been charged with one run in six innings over nine appearances since the start of September, but with a 1.83 ratio. He’s walked five in six innings.

Lindblom started the sixth. LaRoche was the first batter he faced and the lefty hit a 1-0 pitch out to right, putting Washington up 2-1. Tracy walked and moved to second when DeRosa followed with a single. Bernadina popped out to Frandsen for the first out before Lindblom hit Leon with a pitch, loading the bases for righty Eury Perez. Perez grounded to short with Martinez coming home to force Tracy for the second out. With the bases still loaded, Mayberry singled into center, moving everyone up a base and plating DeRosa to extend the Washington lead to 3-1. Righty Kurt Suzuki hit for the pitcher Zach Duke and grounded to short to end the inning.

Not a good inning for Lindblom, who faces eight hitters and allows two singles, a home run, a walk and hits a batter. He was lucky to only allow two innings in the frame.

Over his last two appearances, Lindblom has allowed three runs on five hits and two walks over 1 1/3 innings.

For the year, Lindblom has a 4.96 ERA and a 1.50 ratio when not pitching in Dodger Stadium. He threw 25 2/3 innings in Dodger Stadium this year, allowing three runs. All three of the runs came on a solo homer.

Horst struck out LaRoche and Tracy in a 1-2-3 seventh.

Horst hasn’t allowed a hit or a walk over his last three appearances, striking out four over 2 2/3 innings. He was pitching for the second day in a row.

Bastardo started the eighth with the Phillies down 3-2. The Nats quickly loaded the bases with nobody out — DeRosa doubled, Bernadina was hit by a pitch and Leon walked. Perez was next and again grounded to short. Martinez again fielded and came home for the force, this time getting DeRosa for the first out. Lombardozzi was next and flew to center for the second out. Bernadina tagged and scored from third. 4-2. Righty Ian Desmond hit for the pitcher Tyler Clippard and flew to Brown in right to leave the runners at first and second.

Like Lindblom in the sixth, Bastardo was fortunate to allow as few runs as he did. Washington loads the bases with nobody out and winds up scoring just one.

Bastardo came into the game having not been charged with a run over 4 1/3 innings in his last six appearances.

The bullpen went four innings in the game, allowing three runs on six hits and two walks while striking out four. Lindblom and Bastardo both didn’t pitch well, but were able to limit the damage.

Horst threw 14 pitches in the game and has thrown two days in a row. Lindblom threw 24 pitches last night. Bastardo 19 and Diekman 17. Rosenberg surely cannot go today after 54 pitches over four innings.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Tom Gorzelanny went (1) Frandsen (2) Mayberry (3) Utley (4) Wigginton (5) Ruf (6) Brown (7) Kratz (8) Martinez. Martinez continues to play short with Rollins sidelined with a sore calf. Wigginton at first against the lefty with Howard down. Ruf hits fifth and plays left. Kratz catches with Ruiz likely to go in this afternoon’s finale.

Frandsen and Mayberry struck out back-to-back to start the top of the first before Utley drew a walk. Wigginton moved Utley up to third with a single, but Ruf struck out swinging to leave the runners at the corners.

Timing, Darin, timing.

Kratz walked with one out in the second, but Martinez grounded into a double-play behind him.

Frandsen doubled with one out in the third. Mayberry was next and hit a ball that DeRosa didn’t handle at short for an error, putting runners on the corners with one down for Utley. Utley hit a ball to first. LaRoche fielded and came home, where Frandsen was caught up and eventually tagged out for the second out. With two down and runners on second and third, Wigginton struck out swinging to end the frame.

Nothing for the Phils after putting men on first and third with one out.

Ruf led off the fourth and hit a 2-2 pitch out to left, putting the Phils up 1-0. Brown and Kratz went down before Martinez singled to left. Righty Christian Garcia came in to pitch to Rosenberg and got him on a popup to Tracy at third in foul territory.

It was 1-1 when Garcia set the Phillies down in order in the fifth.

Lefty Zach Duke started the sixth and walked the leadoff man Wigginton. Ruf struck out for the first out before Brown moved Wigginton to second with a single. Kratz lined softly to short for the second out. Martinez hit a ball back up the middle and off the pitcher’s glove for a single that loaded the bases. Ruiz hit for Diekman and grounded to short to end the frame.

Frandsen doubled to left off of righty Ryan Mattheus to start the seventh with the Phils down 3-1. Mayberry struck out, Utley struck out and Wigginton flew to left to leave him at second.

Nice to see Frandsen, who has been pounding lefties, double off of the righty.

Ruf led off the eighth and homered to left off of righty Tyler Clippard on an 0-2 pitch, cutting the Washington lead to 3-2. Kratz singled with one out in the frame, but Martinez and Orr went down behind him to leave him at first.

Tyler Clippard is a good right-handed pitcher and Ruf homers off of him down 0-2 in the count. Clippard has really struggled of late, throwing to an 8.76 ERA over his last 13 appearances, but that’s still impressive.

Righty Drew Storen set the Phillies down in order in the ninth. Nix hit for Bastardo and grounded to short to end the game.

Frandsen 2-for-5 with two doubles. 4-for-his-last-9.

Mayberry 0-for-5 and struck out twice. 3-for-his-last-36 with a double and 13 strikeouts.

Utley 0-for-3 with a walk. 1-for-his-last-10.

Wigginton 1-for-3 with a walk. 4-for-his-last-11 with a walk.

Ruf 2-for-4 with two strikeouts and two solo homers. 11-for-31 on the year with six extra-base hits, including three home runs, and nine RBI. Ten strikeouts and one walk, which was intentional, in 33 plate appearances.

Brown 1-for-4. 200/293/340 against lefties for the year.

Kratz 1-for-3 with a walk. 181/224/292 over his last 76 plate appearances.

Martinez 2-for-4 with two singles. 11-for-his-last-33 with three doubles.

Lee (6-8, 3.12) faces righty Edwin Jackson (9-11, 4.13) this afternoon. Lee has an 0.93 ERA in his ten starts since the end of July. Jackson has allowed 16 home runs to left-handed batters on the season, which is a lot. Rollins, who almost surely won’t play in the game, is 4-for-6 against him this year with two homers.


Can do Kendrick

The Phillies continue to win and win behind fantastic pitching. Kyle Kendrick’s amazing run continued last night as he allowed a run on two hits over seven innings while striking out eight as the Phils topped the Marlins 3-1 for their fifth-straight win.

The Phillies are 13-4 over their last 17 games. In nine of the 13 games they’ve won they’ve scored four runs or less. In four of those 13, including last night’s game, they scored three runs.

Brown hit a two-run homer off of Miami starter Wade LeBlanc in the bottom of the fifth. The Phils added a third run later in the same inning when Martinez doubled, moved to third on a ground out by Kendrick and scored on a wild pitch. Kendrick took a no-hitter into the sixth inning and allowed just one run in the game, which came in the top of the seventh when Carlos Lee led off with a double, moved to third on a ground out and came home to score on a sac fly.

The bullpen went two scoreless frames after Kendrick left. Over the last four games the bullpen has thrown 11 2/3 scoreless innings.

Kendrick was fantastic in the game, but it was arguably just his third-best start of his last six. He threw seven shutout innings against the Marlins on August 14 and eight shutout innings against the Brewers on August 19. Since the start of July, Kendrick has now thrown to a 2.09 ERA with an 0.97 ratio over 64 2/3 innings in 16 appearances (nine starts).

The Phillies are 70-71 on the year after beating the Miami Marlins 3-1 last night. The Phils lead the series one games to none and have won five in a row. They remain in third place in the NL East, 17 games behind the first-place Nationals. For the first time since July 26, Baseball Prospectus’s Playoff Odds report gives them a chance of making the playoffs that’s greater than 0%. It’s 1%. They are five games back for the Wild Card and have 21 games left to play.

Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing a run on two hits and three walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out eight.

He struck out Justin Ruggiano and Jose Reyes in a 1-2-3 top of the first.

Struck out Giancarlo Stanton and Greg Dobbs in a 1-2-3 second.

He walked Rob Brantly with one out in the third. The pitcher Wade LeBlanc was next and bunted Brantly to second with the second out. Kendrick got Bryan Petersen on ground ball to Utley to end the frame.

Kendrick struck Ruggiano out again in a 1-2-3 fourth.

He set the Marlins down in order again in the fifth.

The Phillies led 3-0 when Brantly singled to center to start the top of the sixth. Righty Gorkys Hernandez hit for the pitcher LeBlanc and walked on five pitches, putting runners on first and second for Petersen. Petersen hit a ball softly towards second and Utley made a nice play, charging and throwing to first for the first out as the runners moved up to second and third. Ruggiano was next and Kendrick struck him out swinging 1-2 for the second out before walking Reyes on five pitches to load the bases for Stanton. Kendrick struck Stanton out swinging 1-2 to leave them loaded.

Biggest at-bat of the game for Kendrick and he gets Stanton swinging. Ruggiano can’t bring the runner home from third with less than two outs as Kendrick strikes him out for the third time in the game. Utley made a nice play to get the first out of the inning for the Phils.

Carlos Lee led off the seventh with a double to left. He moved up to third when Dobbs grounded to second for the second out and scored on a sac fly to deep left off the bat off Donovan Solano, cutting the lead to 3-1. Brantly flew to left for the third out.

De Fratus started the eighth with a two-run lead. Righty Austin Kearns hit for the pitcher Ryan Webb and struck out looking 2-2 for the first out. Petersen singled to right before De Fratus struck Ruggiano out looking for the second out. Diekman came in to pitch to Reyes and got him on a fly ball to center to end the frame.

Not sure you need to bring a lefty in there to face the switch-hitter Reyes, but it worked out for the Phils. Reyes’s numbers are a tiny bit better against righties than lefties this year (287/348/446 vs righties and 265/337/404 against lefties). For his career he’s been better against lefties than righties — 300/355/438 against lefties and 288/337/442 against righties. So I’m not sure you need to go out of your way to bring a lefty in there.

De Fratus was pitching for the second straight day. He faced three hitters, struck out two and allowed a single to Petersen, which is the only hit he’s allowed in his first four appearances.

Diekman faced one batter in the game and got him out, dropping his ERA on the year to 4.43. He was also pitching for the second day in a row.

Bastardo started the ninth and struck Stanton out on a wild pitch that allowed Stanton to take first. Lee was next and Bastardo got him to ground to Martinez at third. Martinez went to second to start the double-play that cleared the bases. Bastardo struck the lefty Dobbs out swinging 1-2 to end the game.

Bastardo gets the ninth after Papelbon pitches in both games of the double-header on Sunday. Bastardo was pitching for the second day in a row. Over his last 11 appearances, he’s allowed one run in nine innings on six hits and a walk while striking out 20. 20?

Overall the pen goes two scoreless innings in the game, allowing one single and striking out four.

All three of the pitchers that appeared have thrown two days in a row. De Fratus threw 13 pitches in the game, Bastardo seven and Diekman two.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Wade LeBlanc went (1) Rollins (2) Mayberry (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Wigginton (6) Brown (7) Kratz (8) Martinez. Mayberry hits second against the lefty. Wigginton plays left the day after going 2-for-4 with a double and a homer. Kratz catches and Martinez plays third.

Rollins singled to center to start the bottom of the first, but Mayberry hit into a double-play behind him. Utley followed that with a double to left, but was left stranded when Howard struck out swinging.

Howard is hitting 183/234/338 against left-handed pitching for the year with 35 strikeouts in 77 plate appearances.

No run for the Phils despite a single and a double in the inning.

The Phillies went in order in the second, third and fourth.

Wigginton led off the fifth and walked on the ninth pitch of his plate appearance. It brought Brown to the plate and he hit a 3-1 pitch down the first base line and out for a two-run homer, putting the Phillies up 2-0. Kratz popped to Reyes for the first out of the inning before Martinez doubled to left. Kendrick moved Martinez up to third with a ground out to first for the second out. With Rollins at the plate, Martinez scored on a wild pitch, putting the Phils up 3-0 before Rollins struck out swinging to end the inning.

Wigginton gets on base by walking in a long at-bat before Brown homers off of the lefty.

Martinez gets a big hit, doubling to left. Kendrick moves him up to third with a ground ball on the right side, which allows Martinez to score on the wild pitch.

Mayberry singled off of lefty Dan Jennings to start the sixth, but the Phillies went in order behind him.

Brown drew a walk off of Jennings to start the seventh with the led cut to 3-1. Righty Ryan Webb took over for Jennings and got Kratz on a fly ball to left for the first out and Martinez on a popup to first for the second. Schierholtz hit for Kendrick and popped to Reyes to leave Brown stranded.

Lefty Mike Dunn set Rollins, Mayberry and Utley down in order in the eighth.

Rollins 1-for-4 with a single. 6-for-his-last-30.

Mayberry 1-for-4 with a strikeout. 300/374/500 in 147 plate appearances since the trades.

Utley 1-for-4 in the game. 5-for-his-last-13.

Howard 0-for-3 with a strikeout. 167/254/315 over his last 63 plate appearances.

Wigginton 0-for-2 with a big walk ahead of Brown’s home run. 2-for-13 in September with four walks.

Brown 1-for-2 with a walk and a home run in the game. 5-for-his-last-16 with a double, a home run and two walks.

Kratz 0-for-3. 0-for-his-last-10. 184/200/327 over his last 50 plate appearances.

Martinez 1-for-3 with a double. He’s 5-for-his-last-12.

Halladay (9-7, 3.87) faces righty Nathan Eovaldi (4-11, 4.44) tonight. Halladay’s left/right splits for 2012 are very similar to the same numbers for his career with the exception that righties have hit for more power against him this season. Eovaldi came from the Dodgers to the Fish in the Hanley Ramirez trade at the end of June. He’s thrown to a 4.85 ERA in his eight starts with the Marlins and opponents have hit .294 against him.


Master plan to rebuild around Kratz and Frandsen hits a snag as rules force the Phils to field other players

The Phillies came up short last night as the old guard folded late and the Reds beat them 5-4 to even the series at a game apiece.

The Phils went into the top of the seventh with a 1-0 lead, but Lee allowed three runs in a top of the seventh that included errors by Howard and Utley. Bastardo allowed a solo homer in the eighth and Papelbon allowed a solo homer in the ninth.

The Phillies allowed five runs after the start of the seventh inning.

Kevin Frandsen was outstanding in the game and his effort is hard to ignore as the Phils think about 2013 and their never-ending gaping hole at third. He had three hits, including a triple with two outs in the eighth inning that tied the game at 4-4 and upped his average on the year to .350 after 80 at-bats. He also made two spectacular diving plays at third base, one of which came in the sixth as the Phils held a one-run lead with the bases loaded, following them up with throws from his knees in time to get the runner.

Kratz was merely 1-for-4 with a double last night, but he’s slugging .723 in his 65 at-bats with the Phils this year.

Less spectacular was Antonio Bastardo, who allowed yet another home run in the top of the eighth to put the Phils behind 4-3. Since the end of May, Bastardo has thrown to a 7.71 ERA and allowed seven home runs in 23 1/3 innings. The Phils are apparently willing to go the extra mile to make Bastardo their eighth inning guy, but that’s really not working in dramatic fashion and hasn’t been for a long time.

The Phillies are 57-66 on the year after losing to the Cincinnati Reds 5-4 last night. The teams have split the first two games of the series. They are still tied for third place in the NL East, 20 games behind the first-place Nats. If they went 39-0 in their remaining games, the Phils would finish with six fewer wins than they had in 2011.

Lee got the start for the Phillies and went 6 2/3 innings, allowing three runs on nine hits and a walk. Only two of the runs were earned. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, all doubles. He struck out nine.

The Phillies have lost three games in a row that Lee has started and are 7-15 in his starts for the year.

He struck out Zack Cozart and Drew Stubbs for the first two outs in the top of the first before Brandon Phillips doubled to center. Ryan Ludwick flew to Brown in right for the third out.

The Phillies were up 1-0 when Lee started the second. He struck Jay Bruce out for the first out and got Scott Rolen on a fly ball to right for the second before Todd Frazier doubled. Ryan Hanigan lined to Rollins to leave Frazier at second.

Lee struck out the pitcher Homer Bailey and Stubbs in a 1-2-3 third.

He struck out Phillips and Bruce as he set the Reds down in order in the fourth.

Hanigan singled with two outs in the fifth. Lee got Bailey looking behind Hanigan to leave Hanigan at first.

Singles by Cozart, Stubbs and Phillips loaded the bases to start the sixth. Ludwick hit a ball hard to third, but Frandsen made a fantastic play, diving to his left to make the play and then throwing strong to home from his knees to force Cozart for the first out. Bruce was next and Lee got him to ground into a double-play to keep the Reds off the board and the Phils still ahead 1-0.

Huge play by Frandsen.

Lee didn’t have as much luck getting out of his jam in the seventh. Rolen led off with a double and Frazier walked behind him. Hanigan was next and twice tried to bunt and fouled it off. Swinging away 1-2, he singled into center. Rolen scored from second, tying the game at 1-1. Howard didn’t handle the throw in from center and the ball got away around the mound, allowing the runners to move up to second and third with nobody out. Lee struck out Bailey for the first out before Cozart hit a fly ball to center deep enough for Frazier to tag and score, putting the Reds up 2-1. Stubbs was next and lined a single to left, scoring Hanigan from second. 3-1. Rosenberg came in to pitch to the righty Phillips. Phillips hit a ground ball to second that Utley didn’t handle for another error, putting runners on first and second. Rosenberg struck out Ludwick to leave them there.

Two errors for the Phillies in the frame. Whether you think it cost them a run or not depends on whether you think anyone could take a base on the Cozart fly out for the second out if the runners were on first and second rather than second and third and how many runs you think would have scored on the Stubbs single. I don’t think it’s likely that Frazier goes from second to third on Cozart’s ball had he been on second.

Rosenberg was pitching for the second straight day for the first time in his career. Big strikeout of Ludwick with two men on for the final out of the inning. Actually faced two man in the frame and handled both, but one was safe on the Utley error.

Bastardo started the eighth with the score tied at 3-3. He got the first two before Frazier hit an 0-1 pitch out to left. 4-3. Hanigan walked and righty Miguel Cairo hit for the pitcher Sean Marshall. Cairo struck out looking to leave Hanigan at first.

Bastardo was also pitching for the second straight day. 7.71 ERA since the end of May.

Papelbon started the ninth with the game tied again, this time at 4-4. Cozart was the first batter he faced and Cozart hit his first pitch out to left. 5-4. Papelbon got the next three. Frandsen made another outstanding defensive play to get the second out on a grounder by Phillips, diving to make the play and again throwing from his knees in time to nip the runner.

Almost saw Phillippe Aumont make his debut in the ninth. He was warming in the eighth before the Phillies tied things up.

Papelbon was charged with his first run since July 21 when he gave up a run in his second inning of work to the Giants. He came into the game having thrown 10 1/3 scoreless innings.

The bullpen goes 2 1/3 innings in the game for the Phillies, allowing two runs on two hits and a walk while striking out four. They are out-bullpened by the Reds, who allow a run in 2 2/3 innings on four hits and two walks.

Rosenberg has pitched two days in a row, but threw six pitches last night and two in the first game. Bastardo has also thrown two days in a row. He threw 17 pitches yesterday and ten in game one.

The Phillies lineup against righty Homer Bailey went (1) Rollins (2) Pierre (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Mayberry (6) Brown (7) Frandsen (8) Kratz. Again, Mayberry can’t really hit fifth against a righty and break up four lefties 2-4 and another lefty in the six-hole.

Rollins led off the bottom of the first and hit a ball that Phillips didn’t handle at second for an error. Pierre flew to center for the first out before Utley moved Rollins to third with a single. Howard was next and hit a ball off the base of the wall in right. Rollins scored to put the Phils up 1-0, but the ball rolled right to Bruce in the outfield and Utley had to hold third. It brought Mayberry to the plate with runners on the corners. He roped a ball just foul down the left field line before striking out for the second out. Brown got ahead 3-1 and then struck out looking at a 3-2 pitch on a ball that looked real low.

Howard smoked the ball, but it goes right back to Bruce and costs the Phils a run. Mayberry strikes out with one out and a man on third to keep the Phillies from getting more.

Kratz and Lee struck out as the Phils went in order in the second.

Utley singled to right with two outs in the third, but Howard struck out swinging to leave him at first.

Frandsen singled with two outs in the fourth, but Kratz grounded to short to end the inning.

Rollins singled to right with one out in the fifth. Pierre popped to Cozart before Rollins was caught stealing for the third out.

Utley was hit by a pitch to start the sixth. Howard lined to left and Mayberry hit into a double-play.

The Phillies were down 3-1 when they hit in the seventh. Frandsen singled with one out and moved to third on a double by Kratz. Nix hit for Rosenberg and lefty Sean Marshall came in to pitch to him. Wigginton hit for Nix and walked, loading the bases for Rollins. Rollins doubled to left, scoring Frandsen and Kratz to tie the game at 3-3 with men on second and third and one out. Pierre bunted on a safety squeeze and Marshall made a fantastic play, getting to the play and throwing across his body in time for Hanigan to apply the tag and avoid Wigginton’s attempt to separate him into two distinct entities. Utley lined to second to leave the runners at first and third.

Righty Jonathan Broxton started the eighth for the Reds with the Phils down 4-3. He walked Howard and Martinez ran for Howard at first, but Mayberry grounded into another double-play, his second in two at-bats, to clear the bases. Brown was next and hit a hard ground ball to second that went through Phillips and was called a single. It put a man on for Frandsen and Frandsen tied the game with a triple to right that scored Brown. 4-4. Kratz grounded to third to leave Frandsen stranded.

Phillips should have made the play on the ball hit by Brown. Calling that a hit instead of an error is a gift. Martinez running for Howard might have mattered a lot — Howard’s spot was on-deck in the bottom of the ninth when Utley struck out swinging to leave Rollins at third.

Lefty Aroldis Chapman started the ninth with the Reds up 5-4. Polanco hit for Papelbon and reached on an infield single. Rollins was next and bunted, but too hard. Chapman fielded and threw to second where Polanco was just out for the first out. Chapman struck out Pierre. Rollins stole second and then third before Utley struck out swinging to end the game.

The Phils have to send the lefty Pierre to the plate with close to no chance of getting a hit against Chapman cause they’re out of righties. The stolen bases by Rollins in the inning could have been key. Chapman overpowered Utley, but had the option to pitch around him with Martinez and not Howard due to hit next for the Phils after Martinez ran for Howard in the eighth.

Rollins was 2-for-5 with a double and two RBI. He came into the series 1-for-his-last-19, but he’s 3-for-10 in the first two games of this set. He stole two bases that could have been critical in the ninth and was caught stealing in the fifth.

Pierre was 0-for-5 with a strikeout and five men left on base.

Utley 2-for-4 with an error that didn’t hurt the Phils. He’s 6-for-his-last-14.

Howard 1-for-3 with a walk, an RBI and an error that did hurt the Phillies in the seventh.

Mayberry 0-for-4 with a strikeout. He grounded into two double-plays and left four men on base.

Brown was 1-for-4 with a single on a ball that is often called an error.

Frandsen 3-for-4 with a triple and an RBI.

Kratz 1-for-4 with a double.

Worley (6-8, 4.11) faces righty Bronson Arroyo (9-7, 3.96) tonight. Opponents have hit .367 against Worley over his last three starts as he’s thrown to a 7.90 ERA. He has a 5.92 ERA in his nine starts since the end of June. Arroyo has walked just 27 in 150 innings this year, which is the best walk rate of his career. He’s been a lot better against righties (238/275/381) than he has against lefties (305/336/480).


Gloom and Lindblom

The bullpen collapsed again last night, allowing six runs after the sixth inning as the Braves hammered the Phils 12-6.

The worse news is that Josh Lindblom, who many hope will play a big role in turning things around in a miserable bullpen, was at the center of the collapse.

Jimmy Rollins hit Tim Hudson’s first pitch of the bottom of the first out to right for his fourth home run in the last nine games, giving the Phils an early 1-0 lead. Kendrick had a miserable outing, though, allowing six runs and not making it out of the fourth inning. The Phils went into the bottom of the fifth down 6-1, but mounted a rally that included back-to-back doubles from Rollins and Brown and a three-run homer from Howard to tie the game at 6-6. Bastardo and Lindblom were terrible in the seventh, allowing four runs as the Phils fell behind to stay. Lindblom came back to face three batters to start the eighth and all three of them reached base — two would come around to score as LA tacked another pair of runs onto their lead.

It looked like the Phils were going to get out of the seventh with the game still tied at 6-6. Bastardo got the first two men he faced before Atlanta loaded the bases on a double and two walks (one of which was intentional). Lindblom came in to face righty Dan Uggla with two outs, the bases loaded and the game still tied. Uggla won that battle in a big way, clearing the bases with a three-run double down the left field line.

Bastardo has had a miserable season. Lindblom hasn’t had much success in his initial outings with the Phillies, either. His 10.32 ERA after four appearances won’t go very far towards easing the nervousness some fans had about his 5.32 ERA away from Dodger Stadium when he joined the Phils.

Oh, and the Phillies just can’t beat the Braves. At all. The Phils are 13-11 since the All-Star break — 1-5 against the Braves and 12-6 against everyone else. They were also swept by Atlanta in a three-game series in Atlanta in their final set before the break. So they’re 1-8 over the last nine against the Braves and the one took an outstanding pitching performance by Hamels.

The Phillies are 50-61 on the year after losing to the Atlanta Braves 12-6 last night. The Braves take the series two games to one. The Phils are all alone in last place in the NL East again, 18 games out of first.

Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and went 3 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on seven hits and three walks. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and a home run. He struck out one.

He has a 5.01 ERA in his 15 starts for the year.

Michael Bourn was the first hitter of the game and singled to center, but Kendrick got Martin Prado to bounce into a double-play behind him. Jason Heyward grounded to second behind Prado.

Kendrick started the second up 1-0. Freddie Freeman walked with one out and moved to second on a single by Dan Uggla. A wild pitch moved the runners up to second and third before David Ross grounded to short for the second out with Freeman scoring (1-1) and Uggla moving up to third. Kendrick walked Paul Janish, putting two men on for the pitcher Tim Hudson and Hudson cleared the bases with a double to center. 3-1. Kendrick walked Bourn to put two men on before Prado singled to right. Hudson scored to make it 4-1 and Bourn moved up to third. Heyward popped to Rollins for the third out.

Ugly inning for Kendrick. He still had allowed just one run and had a runner on third with two outs and the eight-hitter coming to the plate. He walked Janish, though, and the pitcher hit a two-run double.

Three walks in the frame for Kendrick. That’s too many.

Uggla singled with two outs in the third. Kendrick got Ross on a grounder to short for the third out.

Janish led off the fourth with a single to left on a ball deflected by Frandsen. Hudson tried to bunt Janish to second, but struck out for the first out. Bourn was next and hit a 1-2 pitch out to right center, putting the Braves up 6-1. Valdes took over for Kendrick and got Prado and Heyward to end the frame.

Ninth homer of the year for Bourn.

Valdes was back for the fifth and set Atlanta down in order.

Another solid outing for Valdes. He’s appeared twice for the Phillies this month and been good both times, throwing three shutout innings without allowing a hit or a walk while striking out five.

Schwimer pitched the sixth with the game tied at 6-6 and threw a 1-2-3 frame. Lefty Eric Hinske hit for the pitcher Cory Gearrin and struck out swinging for the third out.

Schwimer has a 2.01 ERA over 22 1/3 innings in his last 22 appearances.

Bastardo started the seventh and got the first two before Heyward doubled to center. Chipper Jones was walked intentionally to get to the lefty Freeman behind him. Bastardo didn’t get a call a 1-2 pitch that was close on the outside of the plate and went on to walk Freeman. Lindblom came on to pitch to the righty Uggla. Uggla hit an 0-1 pitch down the line and into the left field corner, clearing the bases and putting Atlanta on top 9-6. Ross was next and hit a ball to third that should have ended the frame, but Frandsen’s throw to first was in the dirt. Howard tried to scoop it but didn’t. Frandsen was charged with an error that kept the inning alive, Uggla scored and it was 10-6. Ross stole second before Janish grounded to third to end the frame.

Awful. Two outs, nobody on and five straight Braves reach base on two doubles, two walks and an error. Bastardo walks the switch-hitter Jones to get to the lefty behind him and then walks the lefty. Lindblom comes in to the game and immediately crumples, giving up the three-run double to Uggla.

Howard should have handled the throw by Frandsen.

Bastardo’s ERA for the year is up to 5.45 with the outing. He has a 7.61 ERA over his last 27 outings. Opponents have hit just .253 against him in those appearances, but he has walked 14 and allowed six home runs in 23 2/3 innings.

Lindblom walked Tyler Pastornicky to start the eighth and Pastornicky came around to score when Bourn followed with a double. 11-6. Lindblom walked Prado, putting two men on for the lefty Heyward and Horst came in to face Heyward. Heyward flew to center for the first out with the runners moving up to second and third. The Phillies again walked Chipper intentionally, loading the bases for Freeman. Freeman went down on a ball handled by Horst for the second out with Bourn scoring from third. 12-6. Horst walked Uggla to load the bases again, but struck Ross out to leave them loaded.

Twice in two innings is too many times to walk Chipper Jones intentionally.

Miserable outing for Lindblom. He came into the game with two outs and the bases loaded and allowed a three-run double. In the eighth he faced three hitters and allowed two walks and a double. He has a 10.13 ERA and a 2.63 ratio in his four appearances with the Phillies so far.

Horst set the Braves down in order in the ninth.

Horst goes two innings in the game, allowing no hits but two walks. He has a 1.29 ERA with a 1.14 ratio in 14 innings with the Phillies. A lot of walks (six in 14 innings), but opponents are hitting just .204 against him and he has not allowed a home run. With two Triple-A teams from 2011 to 2012, he allowed just five home runs in 89 2/3 innings.

Overall the pen goes 5 2/3 innings in the game, allowing six runs on three hits and six walks. Only five of the runs were earned due to the Frandsen throwing error. Six is too many to walk in 5 2/3 innings. Two of the three hits the bullpen allowed went for extra-bases, both doubles.

Second time in the three-game set the bullpen has to throw more than five innings in the game. Worley exited early in game one and the pen allowed two runs over 5 1/3.

The Hamels complete game and the off-day today will help get the pen some rest. Horst threw 32 pitches in the game. Lindblom 22 and Bastardo 20.

The Phillies lineup against righty Tim Hudson went (1) Rollins (2) Brown (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Mayberry (6) Schierholtz (7) Kratz (8) Frandsen. Kratz catches against the righty with Schneider on the DL. Frandsen keeps on playing third. Lefty veterans Nix and Pierre keep watching while Brown, Mayberry and Schierholtz man the outfield.

Rollins hit Hudson’s first pitch of the bottom of the first out to right, putting the Phils up 1-0. Howard singled with two outs, but Mayberry grounded to third to end the inning.

Down 4-1, the Phillies went in order in the second.

Kendrick and Rollins struck out as the Phils went in order in the third.

It was 6-1 when the Phillies hit in the fourth. Mayberry and Schierholtz walked back-to-back with two outs, but Kratz struck out to leave them both stranded.

Any inning in which Mayberry and Schierholtz both walk should count as a run for the Phillies.

Frandsen singled to right to start the fifth. Pierre hit for Valdes and flew to right for the first out. Rollins was next and he doubled to right with Frandsen scoring to make it 6-2. Brown was next and lined a ball into center. Rollins scored from second (6-3) and Brown went for two, sliding in just safe. Utley was hit by a pitch, putting two men on for Howard. Howard hit a 2-2 pitch out to left-center, tying the game at 6-6. Mayberry was next and drew a walk. Lefty Luis Avilan took over for Hudson and Schierholtz flew to center for the second out. Mayberry went to second on a passed ball with Kratz at the plate before Kratz drove one to deep center. A jumping Bourn tracked it down at the wall to end the inning.

Schierholtz hit his ball to center well also. Second walk in three innings for Mayberry.

Righty Chad Durbin, set the Phillies down in order in the sixth, dropping his ERA on the year to 3.07. Martinez hit for Schwimer with one out and tried to bunt for a hit. Durbin fielded and applied a not particularly gentle tag in front of first base to record the out.

Lefty Jonny Venters set Brown, Utley and Howard down in order in the seventh with Atlanta up 10-6.

Lefties 2-3-4 in the order for the Phils allow a single left-handed reliever to go through all three. Brown struck out for the first out of the frame. He has struck out just twice in 32 plate appearances so far.

Lefty Eric O’Flaherty pitched the eighth. Kratz walked with two outs and moved to second when Frandsen followed with a single. Nix struck out swinging to leave both runners stranded.

Nix against a lefty isn’t really what you’re looking for there. The Phils are pretty low on right-handed hitters on their bench these days.

Down 12-6, the Phils went 1-2-3 in the ninth. Wigginton hit for Horst and struck out swinging for the second out.

Rollins was 2-for-5 with a double, a home run and three strikeouts in the game. 4-for-12 in the series with a walk, two doubles and a home run. 248/306/414 for the season. Over his first 234 plate appearances of the year, Rollins hit .237 and slugged .312. That’s an isolated power of .075. Over his last 251 plate appearances, he has hit .258 and slugged .511. That’s an isolated power of .253. There are seven players in the NL this season who have at least 300 plate appearances and an isolated power better than .253 for the year.

Brown 1-for-4 with a double and an RBI. 3-for-10 with a walk and two doubles in the set. 286/375/393 after 32 plate appearances for the year.

Utley 0-for-4 last night and 1-for-12 with a double and a hit by pitch in the series. 246/348/375 on the year. 264/409/566 over his last 66 plate appearances.

Howard 2-for-4 with a three-run homer, his second big home run in the series. 3-for-12 with two home runs and five RBI in the set. 213/300/438 for the season in 100 plate appearances. He’s hitting .176 against lefties and has struck out in about 47.4% of his plate appearances against them.

Mayberry 0-for-2 and walked twice. 1-for-10 with two walks and a home run in the series. He’s started nine games in a row and posted a 250/333/438 line over 36 plate appearances. 232/277/391 for the year.

Schierholtz 0-for-3 with a walk. 3-for-10 with a walk and a double in the series. 280/321/440 in 29 plate appearances with the Phils.

Kratz 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts. 2-for-6 with a walk and a double in the series. 371/436/857 in 39 plate appearances for the year.

Frandsen 2-for-4 with a throwing error. 4-for-10 with a walk in the series. He’s started the last ten games in a row at third base for the Phillies. 306/342/389 for the year. Not sure what the long term plan is here, cause he’s 30 and has hit more than six home runs in a season once (he hit 13 in 2009 with an assist to the PCL).

The Phillies are off today and start a series with the Cardinals tomorrow.

The next update to Philliesflow will be around August 21.


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