Tag: jake diekman

Please?

The Phils came close to winning their fourth straight last night, but Rosenberg and Diekman combined to surrender seven runs in the eighth and ninth, all seven of which came on the four home runs they allowed.

Rosenberg started the eighth with the Phils down 2-1, pitching for the third straight day, and allowed back-to-back-to-back home runs to the three right-handed hitters he faced to put the Phils in a 5-1 hole. They rallied for five in the bottom of the eighth, getting a two-run single from Byrd and a three-run homer from Brown, his first long ball of the year. It gave them a 6-5 lead going into the ninth and Diekman tried to nail it down with Papelbon watching having thrown three days in a row. Diekman walked two of the first three men he faced and Dan Uggla hit a grand slam off of him with one out in the inning, putting Atlanta on top to stay.

Once again it was an ugly performance for the pen coming off a series in which they were very good. Over the weekend, the Phils swept the Fish with the bullpen allowing three runs over 12 2/3 innings in the set (2.13 ERA and an 0.79 ratio).

The Phils are tied for fourth in the NL in runs scored per game and 14th in runs allowed, ahead of just the Snakes. Chase Utley is currently OPSing 1.393, which has probably helped with the tied for fourth in runs scored thing a bit. He may have difficulty trying to sustain that pace.

The Phillies are 6-7 on the year after falling 9-6 to the Atlanta Braves last night. They’ve won three of their last four.

Hernandez got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing two runs on four hits and six walks. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, a double, a triple and a home run. He struck out three.

Six is too many to walk in six innings. He came into the game having walked two in 10 1/3 innings for the year. He last walked six or more in a game on July 17, 2010, while pitching for the Indians.

3.86 ERA and a 1.43 ratio for Hernandez after three starts. Opponents have hit just .222 against him, but his home run rate is high and his walk rate is high. Lefties are just 2-for-16 against the righty.

He allowed a single to Jason Heyward to start the game in the top of the first. B.J. Upton was next and grounded to short with Heyward forced at second. Upton stole second and took third on a throwing error by Ruiz, but Hernandez struck Freddie Freeman and Justin Upton both out swinging to leave him there..

No run for the Braves after they put a man on third with one out.

Seventeen strikeouts for Hernandez in 16 1/3 innings so far, which is way above his career marks. He’s struck out 14 of the 50 right-handed hitters he’s faced for the year, which is 28%. Over his career he’s struck out about 17.4% of the right-handed hitters he’s faced. 13.6% of lefties for the year compared to about 11.8% for his career. Strikes out the lefty Freeman and the righty Upton to get out of the mini-jam in the first.

Andrelton Simmons tripled to center with two outs in the second. Hernandez walked Ramiro Pena behind him, but Hernandez got the pitcher Ervin Santana to ground out to end the frame.

Heyward walked to start the third with the Phils up 1-0. He stole second and took third when B.J. Upton grounded out for the first out. Freeman was next and hit a ball fielded by Hernandez. He threw to third, where Heyward was caught up and eventually tagged out. Freeman tried to take second while the Phillies worked on retiring Heyward, but was thrown out trying to do so to set Atlanta down.

Third straight inning the Braves put a man on third and fail to score. In the first and third they put a man on third with less than two outs and didn’t score.

Hernandez threw a 1-2-3 fourth. It was still 1-0 when Pena doubled with one out in the fifth. Santana grounded to short for the second out before Heyward walked again. B.J. Upton grounded back to Hernandez to leave both men stranded.

Heyward on base again. Two walks and a single in the first five innings against Hernandez.

Freeman walked on four pitches to start the sixth. Hernandez got Justin Upton swinging for the first out before Evan Gattis hit a 2-2 pitch just out to left for a two-run homer that put the Braves up 2-1. Dan Uggla was next and walked, but Hernandez got the next two to set Atlanta down.

The four-pitch walk to Freeman in front of the Gattis home run costs the Phils a run.

Mario Hollands started the seventh for the Phils. He walked B.J. Upton with one out. Upton stole second with two outs and took third on Ruiz’s second throwing error of the game. Hollands struck Justin Upton out swinging 3-2 o leave B.J. Upton at third.

Phils let the lefty Hollands pitch to the righty Justin Upton in a one-run game in the seventh. Works out. Hollands has a 1.42 ERA and an 0.95 ratio for the year after seven appearances. Since an ugly debut on Opening Day against the Rangers, he’s allowed three hits and a walk over six scoreless innings. Opponents are hitting .150 against him for the year — 3-for-20 with three singles.

Rosenberg started the eighth with the Phils still down a run. He entered having pitched two days in a row. He faced three batters. Gattis was first and homered to left-center. 3-1. Uggla was next and homered to left. 4-1. Simmons followed Uggla and homered to left-center. 5-1. Luis Garcia took over for Rosenberg and retired the next three batters.

Three hitters for Rosenberg, all three right-handed, and all three homer in his sixth appearance of the year. The first three were really bad, although Rosenberg wasn’t charged with a run in any of them. The back-to-back outings before last night were very good — he struck out three in two scoreless innings without allowing a hit or a walk. Last night was obviously awful and the numbers overall are pretty awful for Rosenberg for the year. 6.23 ERA and a 2.08 ratio. Opponents have hit .400 against him with a 1.279 OPS. Righties are 7-for-17 against him with three home runs and a .941 slugging percentage.

Luis Garcia faces three and gets all three in his first outing of the year for the Phils. Heyward lined a ball hard to Asche at third for the third out. He managed a 3.73 ERA for the Phillies over 24 appearances in 2013, but walked 23 in 31 1/3 innings. Walking 23 in 31 1/3 innings isn’t the formula for sustained success.

The Phillies led 6-5 when Jake Diekman started the ninth, filling in for Jonathan Papelbon, who had pitched for three straight days. He walked B.J. Upton to start the frame. Freeman was next and hit a ball to Utley. Utley flipped to second to try and get Upton, but his flip was late and everyone was safe. Justin Upton was next and walked to load the bases. Diekman struck Gattis out swinging 0-2 for the first out, but Uggla was next and hit an 0-1 pitch out to center for a grand slam that put Atlanta back on top at 9-6. Diekman allowed a single to Simmons before getting the next two to end the inning.

Diekman walks two and the Phils don’t get an out on Freeman’s ball before Uggla hits his second home run of the game. The lefty Diekman facing the righy Gattis (who he struck out) and the righty Uggla with the bases loaded in a one-run game in the ninth doesn’t seem ideal to me whether it worked out or not. It didn’t.

8.59 ERA and a 1.64 ratio for Diekman after 7 1/3 innings. He doesn’t give up a lot of home runs, but he gave up a huge one last night. Came into the game having allowed two home runs in 72 innings for this career. He does walk too many — he has now walked 41 in 73 innings for his career, including about 13.8% of the righties he has faced.

Three innings for the pen in which they allow seven runs on five hits, including four home runs, and three walks. Rosenberg has thrown three days in a row. Diekman threw 28 pitches last night.

The Phillie lineup against righty Ervin Santana went (1) Tony Gwynn (2) Jimmy Rollins (3) Chase Utley (4) Ryan Howard (5) Marlon Byrd (6) Domonic Brown (7) Carlos Ruiz (8) Cody Asche. Gwynn starts in center after going 5-for-10 in the last two games against Miami while Revere was sidelined with a rib issue. He has a .314 career on-base percentage, so he’s not an ideal leadoff hitter no matter how many he went for ten in the last two games. On the other hand, he’s now on-basing .500 against right-handed pitching for the year.

The Phillies went in order in the first. Howard led off the second and hit an 0-1 pitch out to center, putting the Phils up 1-0. Ruiz drew a two-out walk, but Asche grounded softly to first to end the inning.

Two home runs in two days for Howard. Three in 13 games puts him on pace to hit about 37 over 162 games.

Gwynn bunted for a single with one out in the third and took second on a throwing error by Gattis. Rollins was next and bunted, presumably for a hit, into the second out, moving Gwynn up to third. Utley struck out swinging to leave Gwynn stranded.

Really hope Rollins was bunting for a hit there, causing bunting Gwynn up to third with the second out doesn’t make a lot of sense.

Byrd doubled to left with one out in the fourth. Brown followed with a walk, but Ruiz lined a ball back up the middle that was caught by a diving Uggla. Uggla flipped to second to double Byrd off and end the inning.

Nice play by Uggla. Byrd didn’t have a chance. I’m sure he’s made bad base-running plays, no hustle plays and mental mistakes in his time as a Phillie, but I don’t remember many of them.

The Phils went in order in the fifth. Utley doubled softly to right with one out in the sixth with the Phils down 2-1, but Howard and Byrd both struck out behind him.

Asche reached on a throwing error by Uggla with two outs in the seventh. With lefty Ian Thomas pitching for the Braves, Mayberry hit for Hollands. Righty Anthony Vavaro took over for Thomas and struck Mayberry out swinging to end the inning.

I think it was a fine time to use Mayberry with a chance against the lefty, even though it was early, but he can’t come through against the righty. 0-for-7 against righties on the year.

The Phils were down 5-1 when they hit in the eighth. Lefty Luis Avilan walked Gwynn to start the frame. Rollins and Utley followed with singles that loaded the bases for Howard. Avilan struck Howard out looking 1-2 for the first out before Byrd singled to right on an 0-2 pitch, scoring Gwynn and Rollins. 5-3 with men on first and second for Brown. Utley moved up to third on a wild pitch before Brown lined a 1-0 pitch from Avilan out to right-center for a three-run homer that put the Phils up 6-5. Avilan got Ruiz and Asche behind Brown.

First home run of the year for Brown and it’s a big one off of a lefty. Gwynn and Utley both reach base against the lefty and score in the frame — Gwynn leads off with a walk and Utley singles. The lefty strikes Howard out with nobody out and the bases loaded. Byrd gets to hit against the lefty, presumably cause the Braves were way up and Brown was behind him, and delivers a big single ahead of the Brown home run.

The Phillies were down 9-6 when they hit in the ninth. Righty David Carpenter walked Rollins with two down. Rollins took second on defensive indifference before Utley grounded out to end the game.

Gwynn 1-for-4 with a big walk in the ninth against the lefty. 6-for-his-last-14 with a walk. On-basing .440 for the year and .500 against right-handed pitching.

Rollins 1-for-3 with a walk. Just 1-for-his-last-8, but with a 283/365/478 line for the year. 5-for-12 against lefties with a 417/417/667. 235/350/412 against righties.

Utley 2-for-5 with a softly hit double. Didn’t get an out on Freeman’s ball in the ninth, which helped the Braves score a run. 15-for-his-last-27 with four walks, six doubles and two home runs. A silly 489/549/844 line for the year.

Howard 1-for-4 with his second home run in two days. Three strikeouts, including one with nobody out in the eighth and the bases loaded against a lefty. 4-for-his-last-14 with three walks and two home runs. Hitting just .224 for the year with a 176/263/412 line against lefties in 19 PA.

Byrd 2-for-4 with two RBI. 7-for-his-last-20 with a walk, two doubles and a home run. Hammering lefties (333/412/533) in the early going, but with a 256/275/385 line against righties. 268/318/480 against righties last year and 275/332/410 for his career.

Brown 1-for-3 with a walk and a three-run homer. On-basing .385 against righties and the same .385 against lefties.

Ruiz 0-for-3 with a walk and made two throwing errors. He’s hitting just .225 for the year, but with a .367 on-base percentage thanks to eight walks in 49 plate appearances. Isolated power of .100 so far, which is worse than his career mark of .136. His best offensive years were 2010, when he on-based .400 over 433 plate appearances, and 2012, when he on-based .394 with an isolated power of .215.

Asche 0-for-4 to drop his average to .189. 0-for-his-last-14. Seven hits on the year, three of which came on Opening Day. 4-for-33 (.121) since Opening Day.

Cliff Lee (2-1, 5.50) faces righty David Hale (0-0, 2.89) tonight. Lee was hit hard by the Rangers on Opening Day and has allowed three runs in 13 innings since. He’s walked just one batters on the year and none over his last two starts, but has given up a lot of hits. Even over his last two outings, opponents have hit .327 against him (with a BABIP of .439, so I’d try to calm down a little). Hale has a 2.89 ERA over two starts, but a 1.82 ratio to go with it. He’s walked seven in 9 1/3 innings on the year.


One direction

Still on walks and how far Phillie pitchers fell in 2013 coming off of four straight years in which they were either the best or second-best team in the league at preventing walks.

Here’s the percentage of batters Phillie pitchers walked in each of the last five seasons and the rank of that percentage relative to the rest of the NL:

2013 2012 2011 2010 2009
All PHI 8.1 (9) 6.7 (1) 6.7 (1) 6.8 (1) 7.8 (2)
NL Avg 7.8 8.0 8.2 8.6 9.1

From 2009 to 2011, the percentage of batters that Phillie pitchers walked was best in the NL three times and second-best the other. In 2013, the NL shrunk from 16 teams to 15 and the 8.1% of batters faced by the Phils was ninth-best in the league.

Looking at the numbers above, the year of the five in which the Phils were most dominant in preventing walks relative to the rest of the NL was 2010. That year they walked 6.8% of the batters they faced in a year in which the average NL pitcher walked 8.6% of the batters they faced. The Phillies still had the best rate of preventing walks in each of the next two seasons, but not as dramatically as they had in 2010.

Over the last five seasons, the year in which the Phillies issued their lowest number of total walks was 2011. They walked 404 that year. In 2013, they walked, 506, 102 more than they had in 2011. 506 is about 125% of 404.

Here’s their numbers for percentage of batters walked by their starters in each of those years along with the same number for all NL starting pitchers:

2013 2012 2011 2010 2009
PHI SP 6.8 5.4 5.1 5.6 6.5
NL Avg SP 7.4 7.4 7.5 8.0 8.3

In each of the five years, including 2013, the rate at which the Phillie starting pitchers walked batters was better than the NL average.

Notably also is that the percentage of batters walked for starting pitchers has trended down over the past three seasons. The Phillie starters walked a similar percentage of batters in 2009 and 2013, 6.5% in ’09 and 6.8% in ’13, but this was much more impressive in 2009 as the overall rate of walks issued by starters in the league was much higher.

Unlike the starters, the relievers have walked a higher percentage of batters than league average in recent years:

2013 2012 2011 2010 2009
PHI RP 10.8 9.9 10.5 9.7 10.4
NL Avg RP 8.7 9.4 9.5 9.7 10.5

As with the starters, percentages of batters walked for the relievers are down in recent years in the NL. In each year 2010 through 2013, NL relievers combined to walk a lower percentage of batters in the season than they had the year before. Not so for the Phillies. In 2013, Phillie relievers walked 10.8% of the batters they faced, the highest mark for any of the five years, while the league average for relievers was 8.7%, the lowest mark of any of the five years for the league.

The 10.8% of batters that the Phillie relievers walked in 2013 is miserable — the worst mark for any NL bullpen for the season. Only one other team, the Cubs, saw their relievers walk more than 9.4% of the batters they faced. The Chicago bullpen walked about 10.2% of the batters they faced in 2013.

Over the last five years, the starters have been very good at preventing walks and the relievers haven’t. In 2013, the starters were close to league average at preventing walks and the relievers were hideous. From 2009 through 2012, the Phils starters were way better than league average at preventing walks while in 2013 they were just a little better. The relievers, on the the other hand, have been average or worse than average in each of the last five years and got a lot worse at preventing walks in 2013 than they had been in any of the past four seasons.

Halladay, Hamels and Lee have obviously been a huge part of that. In 2013, Halladay’s turn from a guy who pitched a ton of innings with a tiny walk rate to someone who walked many clearly hurt the team. Looking back at the last five years, I don’t think we want to forget Blanton or Moyer, either. In 2012, Blanton threw 133 1/3 innings for the Phils and walked just 18, giving him a rate of preventing walks for the year that was better than Halladay, Hamels or Lee. In 2010, Moyer walked just 4.4% of the batters he faced in his 111 2/3 innings, a rate just higher than the 3.0% of the hitters Halladay walked and way below the league average of 8.6%.

In 2013, the results were pretty ugly. The Phillies used 27 pitchers for the year. Here’s the list of players who threw a pitch for the Phils last year who walked a percentage of batters lower than the NL average:

IP BB%
Kyle Kendrick
Cole Hamels
Raul Valdes
Jonathan Papelbon
Cliff Lee
John McDonald
182
220
35
61.7
222.7
0.3
5.9
5.5
5.3
4.3
3.7
0.0

Six players for the team with a walk rate better than league average by percentage of batters faced walked.

One of the six is non-pitcher John McDonald, who didn’t walk any of the three hitters he faced for the year.

Another, Raul Valdes, had a miserable year in which he threw to a 7.46 ERA, allowing seven home runs in his 35 innings while opponents hit .300 against him.

Kyle Kendrick dropped his walk rate below his career average. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he allowed way more hits than he had over the two previous years and righties posted a 318/359/453 line against him.

Twenty-one of 27 pitchers from 2013 walked a higher percentage of batters than the league average. Here they are:

IP BB%
Casper Wells
Luis Garcia
Phillippe Aumont
Ethan Martin
Cesar Jimenez
J.C. Ramirez
Roy Halladay
Zach Miner
Joe Savery
Justin De Fratus
Mauricio Robles
Antonio Bastardo
Chad Durbin
Michael Stutes
B.J. Rosenberg
Mike Adams
Jake Diekman
Jeremy Horst
Tyler Cloyd
Jonathan Pettibone
John Lannan
0.7
31.3
19.3
40
17
24
62
28.7
20
46.7
4.7
42.7
16
17.7
19.7
25
38.3
26
60.3
100.3
74.3
37.5
16.7
13.7
13.7
13.2
12.9
12.8
12.8
12.8
12.0
12.0
11.7
11.1
10.7
10.5
10.3
9.8
9.8
8.9
8.7
8.1

A couple of those guys, especially Antonio Bastardo and Jake Diekman, pitched a bunch of innings for the Phils and were good despite a higher than average walk rate. I think it’s safe to say they were the exception rather than the rule.

Roman Quinn, the 20-year-old shortstop prospect, has ruptured his right Achilles tendon and is out indefinitely.

This suggests the Rockies have interest in signing Ruiz.


Are we there yet?

The bad news is that Phillies/Marlins games have almost undeniably taken on a somebody-has-to-win feel. The worse news is that it happened around the middle of last year. Last night it was the Phillies’s turn to win as they topped Miami 2-1, snapping a five-game losing streak and handing the Marlins their 100th loss of the season.

Miami starter Henderson Alvarez struggled in the first inning, walking three straight batters and helping the Phils push across a pair of early runs. That was all they would get and all they would need. Zach Miner started the game for the Phillies and held the Fish to a run over four innings. He was followed by four Phillie relievers who combined to throw five shutout frames.

One of the four relievers in the game for the Phils was Jake Diekman, who allowed a one-out single in a scoreless eighth. Over his last 18 appearances, Diekman has thrown to an 0.55 ERA and an 0.61 ratio while striking out 23 in 16 1/3 innings.

The Phillies are 72-85 on the season after beating the Miami Marlins 2-1 last night. The Marlins are 58-100. The Phillies remain tied with the Mets for third-place in the NL East. Both teams are 21 games behind the first-place Braves and trail the second-place Nats by 11 1/2.

Miner got the start for the Phillies and went four innings, allowing a run on four hits and two walks. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, both doubles. He struck out three.

Miner drops his ERA on the season to 3.08 with the outing. The 3.08 ERA is a lot more impressive than the 1.52 ratio. Miner has allowed just 26 hits in his 26 1/3 innings and held opponents to a .263 average, but has walked 14. Lefties especially have drawn a ton of walks — they’re hitting just .241 but on-basing .395 against him for the year.

The Phillies led 2-0 when he set the Marlins down in order in the bottom of the first.

Giancarlo Stanon singled to center to start the second. Justin Ruggiano was next and lined a 1-0 pitch into the gap in left-center for a double. Stanton scored from first (1-0) and Ruggiano tried to move up to third as Brown rambled to the ball, but Brown finally got there and relayed to Rollins. Rollins’s throw to third was in time to get Ruggiano, leaving the bases empty with one down. Miner got the next two hitters on a ground ball to second and a strikeout.

Miner’s issues this season have mostly been with walks, but the only run he allowed in his four innings last night came on back-to-back hits by righties. The Phillies and Miner were fortunate to get Ruggiano at third as there was a good chance Ruggiano on third with nobody out would have led to at least a second run in the frame.

Miner allowed a one-out double to the pitcher Henderson Alvarez with one out in the third. He walked Ed Lucas with after getting the second out, putting men on first and second with two down for lefty Christian Yelich. Yelich grounded to Miner to end the inning.

Ruggiano singled to left with one out and stole second before Logan Morrison drew a walk. It put men on first and second with one down, but Miner retired Adeiny Hechavarria on a ground ball to third for the second out and got Jeff Mathis swinging for the third.

Second time in two innings that Miner allows a hit and a walk in the inning, but keeps the Marlins from scoring.

Michael Stutes threw a 1-2-3 fifth. Galvis made a nice play at third on a ball hit hard to retire Alvarez for the first out.

Wait, Michael Stutes is on the team, I hear you cry? Evidently. He was activated from the 60-day DL on Friday after missing more than two months with biceps tendinitis. Last night’s appearances was his first since June 22. He threw to a 1.32 ERA in 13 2/3 innings in his first 11 appearances on the season. From June 19 to June 22, he pitched three times and two of the outings were miserable — in the three appearances combined he allowed eight runs over two innings. Last night was his first appearance since.

JC Ramirez pitched the sixth and the seventh. Miami didn’t score in either inning and Ramirez allowed just one base-runner on a Yelich single to start the sixth.

Ramirez has just been awful this year, but he goes two scoreless innings in his best outing in a long time. Coming into last night’s game he had allowed a least one run in each of his last ten appearances, throwing to an 11.57 ERA and a 2.43 ratio in those outings.

Diekman pitched the eighth. He allowed a one-out single to Lucas, but got the next two.

Diekman continues to be fantastic. Over his last 18 appearances, he’s thrown to an 0.55 ERA and an 0.61 ratio while striking out 23 in 16 1/3 innings. For the year, righties numbers against the lefty are still pretty concerning. Righties are hitting 305/374/402 against him while lefties have a 148/209/148 line. Lefties don’t have an extra-base hit against him in 68 plate appearances. He’s allowed just one home run on the year, which was hit by righty David Wright.

Papelbon pitched the ninth. He allowed a two-out single to Hechavarria, but retired Placido Polanco on a fly ball to right to end the game.

Papelbon drops his ERA on the year to 2.52 with the outing. Compared to his career numbers, Papelbon has been better against lefties this year, but righties have gotten more hits against him than they had in the past. Righties are hitting .250 against him for the season and .221 against him for his career.

Five scoreless innings for the pen in which they allow three singles and don’t walk a batter while striking out three. Ramirez threw 25 pitches in the game and Diekman 20.

The Phillie lineup against righty Henderson Alvarez went (1) Hernandez (2) Rollins (3) Utley (4) Brown (5) Ruf (6) Frandsen (7) Galvis (8) Rupp. Frandsen plays first against the righty. He comes into the game hitting 200/244/297 against right-handed pitching for the year. Times are hard, but you really have to figure out a way not to do that. Galvis enters the game with a negative Baseball-Reference calculated dWAR for the year and a .270 career on-base percentage. Cameron Rupp makes his second career start behind the plate. Hernandez hits leadoff — he enters the game on-basing .405 out of the leadoff spot in the order.

Rollins doubled to right with one out. Utley and Brown both walked behind him, loading the bases for Ruf. Ruf walked on a 3-2 pitch that was outside, forcing Rollins home. 1-0 with the bases still loaded. Frandsen was next and grounded to short with the infield back. Hechavarria took the out at first and everyone moved up a base. Utley scored, making it 2-0 with two down and men on second and third. Galvis grounded to second for the third out.

Two runs in the frame for the Phils on the Rollins double and three walks. Nice job by Utley, Brown and Ruf to let Alvarez walk them all in a row.

Miner singled to center with one out in the second, but Hernandez grounded into a double-play behind him.

The lead was cut to 2-1 when the Phillies hit in the third. Utley singled to right with one out and moved up to third on a two-out single by Ruf. Frandsen grounded to second to leave the runners stranded.

The Phillies didn’t have a base-runner in the fourth, fifth or sixth.

Rupp singled to center off of Alvarez with one out in the seventh, but Mayberry and Hernandez both struck out behind him.

Utley walked off of lefty Dan Jennings with one out in the eighth and the Phils still down a run. Brown flew to center and righty Ryan Webb retired Ruf on a ground ball to short.

Utley draws the walk against the lefty. He’s hitting .232 and on-basing .317 against lefties for the year. The Fish bring in a righty to get Ruf, but Ruf is still hitting just 190/311/349 against lefties for the season.

Webb was back and set the Phillies down 1-2-3 in the ninth.

Hernandez was 0-for-4 in the game. He’s 0-for-his-last-7 and 1-for-his-last-12. Hitting .286 and on-basing .352 for the year with an isolated power of .051. The high average and pretty good on-base percentage might be for real. The no power is very definitely for real. Also, he’s not a center fielder and you can’t make him one by playing him in center field. See also: John Mayberry. Hernandez’s UZR/150 as calculated by FanGraphs is -23.2. Mayberry’s is -28.9. Everyone accepts without question that Delmon Young was an abysmal right fielder. And he was. FanGraphs has his UZR/150 in right for the season at -22.2.

Rollins 1-for-4 with a double. 367/446/551 over his last 56 plate appearances. 309/405/456 in 79 plate appearances in September.

Utley 1-for-2 and walked twice. He’s 11-for-his-last-31 (.355).

Brown 0-for-3 with a walk. 250/385/344 in 39 plate appearances since his return.

Ruf 1-for-3 with an RBI. 302/387/453 over his last 62 plate appearances.

Frandsen 0-for-3 with an RBI and left four men on base. Well, coach, what you’re doin’ with Kevin Frandsen . . .I’m not seeing it. 196/240/292 against righties for the year. Not a first baseman. Seems like all that should add up to not starting him at first base against a righty.

Galvis 0-for-4 with a strikeout. Well, coach, what you’re doin’ with Freddy Galvis . . .I’m not seeing it.

Rupp 1-for-4 with a single. 2-for-8 with two singles on the year.

Hamels (8-14, 3.62) faces lefty Brad Hand (1-1, 3.14) tonight. Neither of Hamels’s last two starts have been good as he’s allowed ten runs over 13 innings. Hamels started June with a 4.86 ERA, thanks in part to allowing ten home runs in 74 innings over his first 12 times out. He ended August with a 3.58 ERA. In his 16 starts in June and August, he made 16 starts in which he threw to a 2.73 ERA and allowed seven home runs in 112 innings. He’s allowed four home runs in 28 innings in his first four starts in September. He allowed home runs to about 3.1% of the batters he faced in his 12 starts through the end of May, about 1.6% of the batters he faced in his 16 starts from June through August and has now allowed home runs to about 3.6% of the batters he’s faced so far in September. Not giving up home runs might be the cause of good pitching and it might be the symptom — whichever it is, the differences in results for Hamels over the stretches where he’s limited the home run this year have been pretty dramatic. Hand has made eight appearances in relief this year and one start. In the eight relief appearances, he’s allowed a run over 8 2/3 innings on one hit and five walks (1.04 ERA and an 0.69 ratio). His only start came against the Mets on September 13 and he allowed four runs over 5 2/3 innings. Opponents are hitting .122 against him for the season.


The doctor is probably still out, but could definitely use a little help when he’s in

Roy Halladay’s results were a little better last night. He had a rough start and walked five over six frames, but managed to hold Washington to a single run. He exited after six with a 2-1 lead, but the bullpen coughed up a pair late and the Nats topped the Phils 3-2.

Cesar Hernandez had a big day at the plate for the Phils, going 2-for-3 with a walk and a double that plated both Phillie runs. Utley was 3-for-4. Asche had two hits and started the bottom of the ninth with a drive to right-center that looked ticketed for extra-bases, but was tracked down by Jayson Werth on the warning track.

There were some weird matchups late in the game that didn’t work out for the Phils. They called on lefty Jake Diekman to pitch to a righty to start the eighth inning of a tie game. Wilson Ramos walked on four pitches and the go-ahead run scored later in the frame. With one out in the seventh and men on second and third, Sandberg called on righty Kevin Frandsen to hit against a right-handed pitcher. Frandsen didn’t deliver and ended the day hitting 199/252/298 against righties for the year. The Phillies didn’t score and lost by a run.

The Phillies are 63-77 on the year after losing 3-2 to the Washington Nationals. The Nats take the series two games to one. The Phils have lost three series in a row and are 1-4 in their last five games. They are in fourth place in the NL East, 22 1/2 games out of first and a game behind the third-place Mets.

Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing a run on three hits and five walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out five.

Halladay had a three-start stretch from April 14 to April 24 in which he allowed four runs over 21 innings. Last night was probably his best start since. Five more walks, though, and his rate of walks per nine innings in up to 4.6. At his best it has been around 1.1. Lefties are on-basing .387 against him and both lefties and righties are hitting for a lot of power as he’s allowed 11 home runs in 51 1/3 innings for the season.

Four of the first five hitters he faced in the top of the first reached on a single and four walks. The other, Adam LaRoche, hit a sac fly that put the Nats up 1-0. Halladay got Wilson Ramos to ground into a double-play to end the inning.

He allowed a walk and hit a batter in the second, too, but struck Ryan Zimmerman out looking with men on first and second to end the frame.

Halladay started the third with a 2-1 lead and kept Washington off the board in the third, fourth fifth and sixth.

He set the Nats down in order in the third.

In the fourth, he hit Steve Lombardozzi with two outs, but got Jordan Zimmermann on a fly ball to right for the third out.

He struck out Zimmerman and Jayson Werth in a 1-2-3 fifth.

The Nationals loaded the bases with two outs in the sixth on a single, a double and an intentional walk, but Halladay retired the pitcher Jordan Zimmermann on a ground ball he handled himself to set Washington down.

Miner started the seventh with a 2-1 lead. With one out, Ryan Zimmerman hit a 2-1 pitch out to left, tying the game at 2-2. Miner allowed a two-out single to Adam LaRoche, but retired Ian Desmond on a fly ball to center.

Miner allows the huge home run that ties the game. He’s been charged with at least one run in three of his last five outings. Didn’t walk anyone last night, but has walked six in 5 2/3 innings over his last five appearances. Lefties don’t have an extra-base hit against the righty and righties are slugging .524 thanks to two doubles and three home runs in 50 plate appearances. Everyone is getting on base too much, thanks to nine walks in his 16 1/3 innings on the year.

Diekman started the eighth in a tie game and walked the leadoff man, the righty Ramos. Jeff Kobernus ran for Ramos at first and righty Scott Hairston hit for the lefty Corey Brown. Hairston bunted Kobernus up to second with the first out. Kobernus stole third, bringing Lombardozzi to the plate with one out. Lombardozzi chopped a ball up the middle. Utley, charging, fielded behind the mound and threw home, but not in time as Kobernus slid in safely to put the Nats up 3-2. Diekman struck out both of the next two batters to leave Lombardozzi at first.

Diekman had been pitching great, but walks the righty Ramos to lead off the inning, which leads to the game-winning run. It’s September. The Phillies don’t have a righty in the bullpen they can use to get out a righty to start the eighth inning of a tie game? Rosenberg seems like the real choice — he’s been pitching well, but had thrown two straight days coming into the game. JC Ramirez and Luis Garcia seem like candidates as well, but Ramirez has been absolutely awful and Garcia threw 31 pitches on Tuesday.

The bigger problem is not the choice to bring in Diekman, but that there aren’t better choices to make given the bullpen.

Diekman allows a run on no hits and a walk in the game. Coming into the game he had a 0.00 ERA and a 0.60 ratio over his last ten appearances with 14 strikeouts in ten innings. Righties are on-basing .392 against him for the year, which makes him a bad candidate to face a righty leadoff man in a tie game in the eighth.

Papelbon pitched the ninth with the Phillies still down a run, allowing a one-out single to Werth, but getting the next two hitters.

Papelbon pitches with the Phils down with the off-day today. He hasn’t been charged with a run in nine innings over his last nine appearances.

The Phillie lineup against righty Jordan Zimmermann went (1) Hernandez (2) Rollins (3) Utley (4) Ruiz (5) Ruf (6) Asche (7) Mayberry (8) Bernadina. Hernandez leads off and starts in center for the second time. Ruf plays first with Mayberry in left and Bernadina in right. This lineup is both awful and way, way better than the game two lineup.

Hernandez walked to start the bottom of the first with the Phils down 1-0. He moved up to second on a one-out single by Utley, but Ruiz struck out and Ruf grounded out to leave the runners stranded.

Great to see the leadoff walk for Hernandez, but I think he’s going to have a lot of troubles drawing walks in the majors unless he shows some power, which he’s going to have trouble doing. He walked in about 7.7% of his minor league plate appearances. Two walks in 41 plate appearances with the Phils so far is about 4.9%.

Asche and Mayberry singled back-to-back to start the second. Bernadina struck out for the first out before Halladay bunted the runners up to second and third with the second. Hernandez was next and sliced a ball the other way, double the third base line for a double. Both runners scored and the Phillies led 2-1. Rollins flew to right for the third out.

The Phillies went in order in the third and fourth.

Hernandez singled to center with one out in the fifth, but was caught stealing before Rollins flew to center to end the inning.

Hernandez 2-for-2 with a walk, a double, two RBI and a caught stealing through five innings. He stole a career-high 33 bases in the minors this year and was caught eight times.

Utley started the sixth with a single, but Ruiz grounded into a double-play behind him and Ruf struck out for the third out.

Asche singled softly to left to start the seventh with the game tied at 2-2 and moved up to second when Mayberry was hit by a pitch. Bernadina bunted the runners up to second and third with the first out. Frandsen hit for Miner and grounded to third. Zimmerman fielded and threw home where Asche was tagged out for the second out. Hernandez grounded to second to end the inning.

Washington made a fantastic defensive play to get Hernandez and end the inning. Herandez hit the ball in the hole between first and second. Lombardozzi fielded moving to his left, spun and threw in the dirt to Zimmermann covering. Zimmermann dug the ball out while on the move to end the inning.

Nothing for the Phils after putting men on first and second with nobody out. The righty Frandsen pinch-hits against a righty with one out and runners on second and third and the Phils come up empty. Frandsen is hitting .219 for the year and 199/252/298 against righties. Domonic Brown is the obvious guy to pinch-hit with there if he’s available. Lefty Pete Orr on the bench for the Phils. Either way, Frandsen against the righty isn’t really what you want.

Utley singled off of lefty Ian Krol with one out in the eighth. Righty Craig Stammen came in to pitch to Ruiz and Ruiz moved Utley up to third with a single into center. It put runners on the corners with one down for Ruf. Ruf struck out swinging at a 2-2 pitch in the dirt. The ball got away from the catcher Solano. Utley stormed home from third and slid-head first into the plate as Solano dived to apply the tag. Utley was called out on a very close play to end the inning.

Second time in two innings the Nats make a nice defensive play to set the Phillies down. The Phillies get nothing after putting runners on first and third with one out. Ruf can’t bring the runner home from third with less than two outs, striking out with one down and men on the corners.

The Phils trailed 3-2 when they hit in the ninth. Righty Rafael Soriano set Asche, Mayberry and Bernadina down in order. Asche absolutely crushed a ball to right-center, but Werth ran it down on the warning track for the first out.

Hernandez was 2-for-3 with a walk, a double, two RBI and caught stealing. His double was the only extra-base hit of the game for the Phillies. 3-for-11 with two walks and a double in the three-game set. 256/293/308 in 41 plate appearances on the year.

Rollins 0-for-4 with a strikeout. 1-for-8 with a walk and a double in the series. 242/309/332 for the year. 227/291/284 over his last 329 plate appearances.

Utley 3-for-4 with three singles. 4-for-7 with two walks and four singles in the series. 274/344/476 for the year. 241/347/325 over his last 98 plate appearances. 208/294/400 against lefties for the season.

Ruiz 1-for-4. 3-for-10 with two walks in the series. 280/327/386 on the year. 328/412/500 against lefties and 265/300/352 against righties.

Ruf 0-for-4 and struck out three times. Struck out in the eighth in a tie game with runners on first and third and one out on the play where Utley was nailed at the plate. 0-for-8 with a walk and four strikeouts in the series. 244/338/489 in 207 plate appearances on the year. 187/265/429 over his last 102 plate appearances.

Asche 2-for-4. Werth took a double away from him to start the bottom of the ninth, running his ball down on the warning track. 5-for-8 with a home run and three RBI in the series. 276/324/449 on the year.

Mayberry 1-for-3 and was hit by a pitch. 1-for-10 with a single in the series. 229/292/396 for the year. 194/265/351 over his last 211 plate appearances.

Bernadina 0-for-3 and struck out twice. 1-for-6 in the series with a single and three strikeouts. 3-for-his-last-38 (.107) with a home run. Three walks in his last 95 plate appearances. 143/208/306 in 54 plate appearances with the Phillies.

The Phillies are off today. Lee (11-6, 3.09) is expected to face lefty Mike Minor (13-5, 3.08) Friday night when the Phils play the Braves at home. Opponents have hit .291 against Lee in his nine starts since the end of June with a BABIP of .339. In his 17 starts through June they hit .217 against him with a BABIP of .271. None of Minor’s 27 starts this year have come against the Phillies. Opponents have hit just .230 against him for the season and he’s only walked 38 in 172 2/3 innings.


My favorite Martin

There’s not a whole lot to like about the present or the future for the Phillies, but 24-year-old Ethan Martin sure looked good last night. Martin threw six shutout innings against the Rockies before surrendering a pair of runs in the seventh and the Phils held on for a 5-4 win.

Mayberry delivered the big blow of the game, a three-run homer in the fourth inning. Ruiz added a solo shot in the fifth.

The Phillies are 55-69 on the year after beating the Colorado Rockies 5-4 last night. The Phils have won two straight, but are 6-21 since beating the Mets 13-8 on July 19 to go a game over .500. They have scored 80 runs in those 27 games, which is about 2.96 per game. Coming into last night’s game they had scored 12 runs in their last seven games (about 1.71 per game).

Martin got the start for the Phillies and went 6 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on four hits and two walks. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and a home run. He struck out six.

Really nice outing for Martin. He allowed six runs in 4 1/3 innings against the Braves in his debut. Since then he’s made three starts in which he’s thrown to a 3.31 ERA and a 1.22 ratio while striking out 16 in 16 1/3 innings.

He allowed a two-out single to Troy Tulowitzki in the top of the first, but got Michael Cuddyer on a ground ball he handled himself to end the frame.

He struck out the side in the second.

Martin struck out Dexter Fowler and Corey Dickerson to start the game. He had five strikeouts through two innings.

He got three ground balls in the third as he set Colorado down in order.

Cuddyer singled to left with two outs in the fourth, but Martin retired Wilin Rosario on a fly ball to right to set the Rockies down.

He started the fifth up 4-0 and set Colorado down in order.

Up 5-0, he threw a 1-2-3 sixth. Wells made a nice sliding catch in right for the third out on a ball off the bat of Dickerson.

Tulo hit Martin’s first pitch of the seventh out to left, cutting the lead to 5-1. Cuddyer was next and walked on four pitches. Rosario flew to left for the first out before Cuddyer stole second, bringing Todd Helton to the plate with one out and a man on second. Helton hit a ball into the gap in left-center that bounced over the wall for a ground-rule double. 5-2. Nolan Arenado was next and walked on a 3-2 pitch in the dirt, putting men on first and second with one down for righty DJ LeMahieu. De Fratus took over for Martin and got LeMahieu on a fly ball to right for the second out. Lefty Charlie Blackmon hit for the pitcher Jeff Francis and De Fratus struck him out swinging to leave both runners stranded.

Martin falls apart a little in the seventh after starting the game with six shutout frames. Tulowitzki leads off by hitting his first pitch out to left and he walks Cuddyer on four pitches behind him. Home run, walk, out, double, walk to the five men he faces in the frame.

Martin had only thrown 72 pitches for the game when he started the seventh.

De Fratus faces two batters in the inning and gets two big outs. He has an 0.73 ERA and a 1.14 ratio in 12 1/3 innings over his last 12 appearances. The righty has been really good against lefties, they’re hitting 143/286/314 against him, but hit hard by righties. 309/387/426.

Luis Garcia started the eighth. Fowler led off with a five-pitch walk and moved up to third when Dickerson followed with a single to right. It brought Tulowitzki to the plate as the tying run and Garcia walked him on four pitches, loading the bases for Cuddyer. Cuddyer struck out swinging for the first out, but Rosario was next and he lined a single into center. Fowler and Dickerson both scored and Tulo moved up to second. 5-4 with one out and men on first and second for the lefty Helton. Diekman struck Helton out swinging 0-2 for the second out. Arenado was next and stepped out of the box as Diekman prepared his 1-2 delivery — Diekman was already in his windup when the batter stepped out and didn’t deliver the pitch. Time out hadn’t been given and Diekman was charged with a balk, moving the runners up to second and third. Arenado went down swinging at a 99-mile-per-hour fastball from Diekman.

You don’t want to walk the leadoff man if you can help it. Garcia gets a huge strikeout of Cuddyer with the bases loaded for the first out, but gives up the two-run single to the next hitter Rosario.

Garcia faced five hitters in the game, allowing two walks and two singles and striking the other out. He’s walked 16 in 16 innings over 16 appearances for the year. Opponents are hitting just .214 against him, but on-basing .397. He’s allowed five earned runs over 1 1/3 innings in his last two appearances, pushing his ERA from 3.07 to 5.63.

Diekman gets called for the weird balk, but faces two hitters and gets two huge strikeouts. The strikeout of Arenado came against a righty with a one-run lead and two men on base. Worked out great for the Phillies, but I think you might want to have a righty against Arenado there, even if it’s Papelbon. Especially given the the pitcher’s spot wasn’t due to hit in the eighth for the Phils and the Rockies were going to go 8-9-1 in the ninth if you can get Arenado out.

Opponents have hit just .147 against Diekman in 10 1/3 innings over his last 11 appearances, but he’s walked seven. Righties are hitting 362/439/500 against him for the year, which is one reason why you don’t want Arenado facing him with two men on base and two outs in the top of the eighth. He’s allowed just two home runs in 51 2/3 innings for his career, which is the way to go if he wants to have a chance given his 32 walks in those 51 2/3 frames.

Papelbon started the ninth with the Phils up a run. LeMahieu led off and singled softly to center. Righty Charlie Culberson hit for the pitcher Rex Brothers. With the count 1-2 on Culberson, LeMahieu was picked off of first with Ruf throwing to Rollins and Rollins running down LeMahieu in-between first and second for the first out. Culberson grounded to third for the second out. Papelbon struck Fowler out looking to end the game.

Really a great time to pick LeMahieu off of first for Papelbon, what with being the tying run and whatnot.

Three batters in the frame for Papelbon. Single, pickoff and two outs. The single was softly hit. Papelbon was pitching for the second straight day and has allowed two hits in three scoreless innings his last three times out.

Overall the pen 2 2/3 innings in relief of Martin, allowing two runs on three hits and two walks. Garcia struggled, but De Fratus, Diekman and Papelbon all pitched well. Papelbon has thrown two days in a row and threw 12 pitches in the game.

The Phillie lineup against righty Jeff Manship went (1) Rollins (2) Ruiz (3) Utley (4) Brown (5) Ruf (6) Asche (7) Mayberry (8) Wells. Mayberry in center with Wells in right. Mayberry can’t play center field. Just stop it. -30.3 UZR/150 in center for the year and -18.8 for his career as calculated by FanGraphs coming into the game. Mayberry has a Baseball-Reference calculated dWAR of -1.4 for the season coming into the game. Casper Wells is a good defensive outfielder and has been non-terrible in about 211 career innings in center. The Phillies are a really bad team right now, but we don’t need more data on Mayberry in center. I would have trouble defending the decision to play Wells in right and Mayberry in center when they’re both in the lineup. For the bazillionth time, I think Mayberry could help a good team as a fourth outfielder who plays a corner and hits against lefties. Ruiz hits second after going 4-for-4 on Sunday. Second time he’s hit second this year with August 8 being the other. He comes into the game on-basing .270 against right-handed pitching for the season. Michael Young out of the lineup after being removed from Saturday’s game with a sore left ankle.

Ruiz doubled to left with one out in the bottom of the first, but Utley and Brown went down behind him.

Asche singled to center with one out in the second, but Mayberry and Wells both grounded out behind him.

The Phils went in order in the third.

Utley and Brown singled back-to-back to start the fourth, putting men on first and second for Ruf. Ruf walked on five pitches to load the bases for Asche. Asche swung at Manship’s first pitch and grounded to second. Ruf was forced at second for the first out, but everyone else moved up a base. 1-0 with one down and men on the corners for Mayberry. Mayberry pounded a 2-1 pitch out to left for a three-run homer, putting the Phils up 4-0. Wells and Martin went down behind him.

Mayberry delivers the big swing of the game. Asche swings at the first pitch after Ruf walks on five pitches.

Ruiz hit a 2-0 pitch out to left with one out in the fifth for his third home run of the year. 5-0. Utley and Brown both flew out behind him.

Ruf singled off of lefty Jeff Francis to start the sixth, but the Phillies went in order behind him.

Righty Wilton Lopez set the Phillies down in order in the seventh. Frandsen hit for De Fratus and popped to third for the first out.

Lefty Rex Brothers struck out Brown and Ruf as the Phils went in order in the eighth.

Rollins was 0-for-4 in the game to drop his average on the year to .246. He’s having the worst year of his career, both offensively and defensively. 1-for-his-last-19.

Ruiz 2-for-4 with a double and a home run, upping his line against righties for the season to 245/275/314. He’s upped his average for the season from .250 to .270 by going 6-for-his-last-8 with a double and a home run.

Utley 1-for-4. 1-for-his-last-15.

Brown 1-for-4. 326/392/543 in August after hitting 186/222/326 in his last 45 PA in July.

Ruf 1-for-3 with a walk and struck out twice. 2-for-his-last-6 with two walks. 6-for-his-last-33 (.182) with three home runs. 304/413/576 against righties and 5-for-30 (.167) with two home runs against lefties.

Asche 1-for-3 with an RBI. 2-for-his-last-17 with a walk and a double.

Mayberry 1-for-3 with a three-run homer. 4-for-his-last-32 (.125) with a double and a home run. Huge homer off the righty last night, but hitting just 237/293/396 against righties for the year. Mayberry and Ruiz do the damage for the offense in the game, each delivering big swings against a righty in a year in which they’ve struggled against right-handed pitching. Mayberry is hitting just 233/299/384 against righties for his career.

Wells 0-for-3 and made nice catch in right to end the sixth. 1-for-16 with a double since joining the Phils. You know your team is really bad when you see they’ve picked up Casper Wells and you think it’s a really good move that will help the squad. Again, the problem isn’t that he doesn’t belong on the roster, it’s that he shouldn’t be starting. See also John Mayberry.

Cloyd (2-2, 3.41) faces lefty Jorge De La Rosa (12-6, 3.22) tonight. Cloyd has allowed three earned runs in 18 2/3 innings over his last three starts, throwing to a 1.45 ERA with the same 1.45 ratio. He’s allowed nine walks in those 18 2/3 innings — allowing walks at that rate isn’t going to add up to a 1.45 ERA for very long. In six starts on the year, Cloyd has allowed more than two earned runs just once. The one he did allow more than two was awful — he gave up six runs in 2 1/3 innings against the Red Sox on May 27. He allowed two home runs in that game. Over his other five starts he hasn’t allowed a home run in 32 innings. De La Rosa has allowed one home run in 27 innings over his last five times out. Righties have had a lot more luck against him on the season than lefties, posting a 282/344/400 line against him while lefties have hit 213/286/255.


Jed dread

The Phillies have played so well of late it seems we should be willing to forgive them just about anything. Looks like we’re going to have to. Tyler Cloyd delivered his second straight ugly start last night and the pen imploded in the eighth, allowing three two-out runs as the Astros beat the Phils 6-4.

Cloyd was solid in the first two innings, setting down the first six batters he faced. He allowed two hits and hit a batter in the third, but worked out of trouble to keep the Astros off the board. He started the fourth up 4-0, but allowed singles to the first two men he faced before Matt Dominguez pounded a three-run homer to left. The Phils took a 4-3 lead into the bottom of the eighth, but Aumont, who has been so good of late, and Diekman both struggled badly. Aumont issued a one-out walk, but Kratz made a fantastic throw from his knees to cut the runner down trying to steal second, clearing the bases with two outs and no runs in. Aumont allowed the next two runners to reach on a walk and a hit by pitch before Diekman came in to face Jed Lowrie. Lowrie cleared the bases on a double just out of the reach of Schierholtz in right, putting the Astros up a run. He would come in to score when Brandon Barnes followed with a single, putting Houston up to stay at 6-4.

Lowrie against the lefty Diekman was the biggest at-bat of the game. Bastardo wasn’t available to pitch to Lowrie after throwing a scoreless seventh. Needing a lefty, Manuel called on Diekman rather than Horst and Diekman couldn’t get the job done, allowing hits to three of the four men he faced including the Lowrie double.

It was the second-straight frustrating outing for Cloyd, who hasn’t gotten an out in the fifth inning in either of his last two starts and was hurt by a three-run homer in both games.

The Phillies are 72-72 on the year after losing to the Astros 6-4 last night. The loss snaps a season high seven-game win streak for the Phils. They remain in third place in the NL East, 17 1/2 games out of first. They are four games out in the Wild Card hunt.

Cloyd got the start for the Phillies and went three innings, allowing three runs on five hits. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a three-run homer. He struck out four.

Cloyd has allowed four home runs in 20 innings so far, which would have him on a pace to allow 40 over 200 innings. That would be too many.

If it makes you feel any better, I can pretty much promise you that Cloyd is never going to allow 40 home runs over 200 innings in a season.

He’s still striking people out. Four in three innings last night gives him 20 in 20 frames for the year. He doesn’t walk anyone — three so far in 20 innings. Opponents are hitting .293 against him and he’s been hammered by home runs. The big blow last night came from righty Matt Dominguez, but lefties are hitting 379/455/621 against him for the year.

He struck out Brett Wallace while setting the Astros down in order in the bottom of the first.

Up 1-0, he struck out Justin Maxwell and Matt Dominguez in the second.

He started the third with a 4-0 lead. Jimmy Paredes led off with an infield single on a ball deflected by Rollins. Cloyd got Tyler Greene on a popup to Rollins. The pitcher Lucas Harrell was next and struck out trying to bunt for the second out. Jose Altuve moved Paredes up to second with a single and Cloyd hit Fernando Martinez with a 1-2 pitch, loading the bases for Wallace. Wallace grounded to Utley to end the inning.

Maxwell and Jason Castro started the fourth with back-to-back singles, putting runners on first and second for Dominguez. Dominguez hit a 3-1 pitch from Cloyd out to left, cutting the lead to 4-3. Rosenberg took over for Cloyd, striking out Paredes for the second out before Greene doubled to left. Rosenberg struck Harrell out looking to leave Greene at second.

Cloyd sets down the first six Astros in order, then six of the next nine reach base and he’s pulled.

Rosenberg set Houston down in order in the fifth.

Great outing for Rosenberg, who goes two scoreless innings, facing seven batters and allowing one hit. He has thrown four scoreless innings over his last four appearances.

Lindblom started the sixth. He walked the first batter he faced, Castro, on five pitches. He got the next three, though, getting Dominguez on a fly ball to right and striking out Paredes and Greene.

Lindblom drops his ERA with the Phillies to 4.32. He hasn’t been charged with an earned run in his last eight appearances, allowing four hits and four walks over six innings while striking out ten. He was charged with two runs that were unearned in Tuesday’s game.

Bastardo started the seventh. Brandon Barnes led off with a single to left. Altuve was next and lined to third for the first out. Righty Matt Downs hit for the lefty Martinez. Barnes stole second before Bastardo struck Downs out for the second out. Wallace popped to Frandsen to end the inning with Barnes still at second.

Bastardo has a 0.00 ERA and an 0.60 ratio over his last ten appearances. In 8 1/3 innings he has struck out 17.

Aumont started the eighth. Maxwell led off and flew to right for the first out. Castro was next and again walked on five pitches. Jordan Schafer ran for him at first. Schafer took off for second as Aumont delivered ball one to Dominguez. Kratz threw from his knees in time to get Schafer for the second out. It cleared the bases with two outs, but Aumont went on to walk Dominguez on five pitches. Lefty Scott Moore hit for the pitcher Wesley Wright and Aumont hit him, putting runners on first and second. Switch-hitter Jed Lowrie hit for the righty Greene and pitcher Jordan Lyle ran for Moore at first. Lowrie’s numbers for the year are way better against righties and Diekman came in to pitch to him. Lowrie lined an 0-1 pitch to right-center, just out of the reach of Schierholtz, which cleared the bases and put the Astros up 5-4. Barnes was next and he singled into center, scoring Lowrie and extending the lead to 6-4. Barnes took second on the throw home. Altuve was next and moved Barnes up to third with an infield single. Altuve stole second before Diekman struck Brian Bogusevic out swinging to leave the runners stranded.

No question that the Phillies need to bring in a lefty to face Lowrie in that key situation. After the double off of Diekman, he’s hitting 203/306/338 against lefties for the year compared to 270/356/498 against righties. I think there’s a huge question of whether it should have been Diekman or Horst. Lefties are on-basing .362 against Diekman for the year and .300 against Horst (although it was guys batting right-handed in Lowrie and Barnes that hurt Diekman last night). Horst has struggled a bit of late, allowing three hits and four walks over three innings in his last three appearances. Diekman had made three straight appearances where he went a third of an inning without allowing a hit or a walk.

Manuel also let Diekman pitch to the righty Barnes with De Fratus and Papelbon presumably both available. Altuve is also a righty. So Diekman faces three batters in a row to start the outing, all batting right-handed, and all three get hits. The one guy Diekman did get, Bogusevic, is left-handed. Righties are now hitting 275/393/412 against Diekman for the year.

The eighth was the kind of inning that makes you miss Raul Valdes.

Fantastic throw by Kratz to get Schafer, which set the Phillies up with two outs, nobody on base and no runs across.

Aumont can’t find the plate, pitching in his fifth game in five days and for the third day in a row. He faces four batters, gets one out, walks two and hits the other. He came into the appearance not having been charged with a run in 4 1/3 innings over his last five appearances. He has now walked six hitters (and hit one) in nine innings over ten appearances for the season. He walked 6.9 batters per nine innings in the minors this season.

Diekman faces four batters, allowing a double, two singles and getting one out. From May 20 to June 27, Diekman made 15 appearances in which he threw to a 1.38 ERA. Since then he has a 7.04 ERA in 7 2/3 innings over 11 outings and opponents have hit 294/415/471 against him. He didn’t walk anyone last night, but he has walked 16 in 22 2/3 innings for the year.

Long day for the pen. They go five innings, allowing three runs on five hits and three walks. Aumont and Diekman combine to allow three hits, two walks and hit a batter in the eighth.

Lindblom threw 21 pitches in the game, Rosenberg 20, Bastardo 19, Aumont 17 and Diekman 15. Aumont almost surely cannot pitch tonight after going three days in a row and five times since the start of the day Sunday. Hopefully Hamels pitches for a long time tonight.

The Phillies lineup against righty Lucas Harrell went (1) Rollins (2) Pierre (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Mayberry (6) Brown (7) Frandsen (8) Kratz. Frandsen returns to the lineup and third base. Ruiz stays on the bench with Kratz catching. Pierre in left against the righty.

Pierre singled to center with one out in the top of the first, but Utley and Howard went down behind him.

Brown walked with one out in the second. Frandsen was next and flew to left for the second out, but Kratz followed and hit a ball off of the wall in left for a double that scored Brown and put the Phillies up 1-0. Cloyd grounded to second to leave Kratz at second.

Pierre and Utley singled back-to-back with one out in the third, putting runners on the corners for Howard. Howard flew to center for the second out, deep enough for everyone to move up a base. Pierre scored from third to put the Phils up 2-0. Mayberry was next and singled softly to right. Paredes didn’t handle the ball cleanly and was charged with an error. Utley scored from second to put the Phils up 3-0 and Mayberry wound up on second on the error. Mayberry took third on a wild pitch before Brown walked again, putting runners back on the corners for Frandsen. Frandsen reached on an infield single, scoring Mayberry (4-0) and moving Brown to second. Kratz struck out to leave the runners stranded.

Pierre does his best to get the rally started, singling for the second time in three innings. This time he scores. Brown walks for the second time in the game in the third inning.

The Phillies went in order in the fourth.

Utley walked to start the fifth with the lead cut to 4-3, but the Phils went in order behind him.

Frandsen and Kratz went down to start the sixth. Orr hit for Rosenberg and singled to left. He stole second before Rollins and Pierre walked back-to-back, loading the bases for Utley. Lefty Xavier Cedeno came in to pitch to Utley and Harrell was ejected from the game as he walked off the mound, presumably complaining about the strike zone. Utley grounded to first to leave the bases loaded.

Orr’s average is up to .313 for the year (15-for-48) after going 2-for-2 in his last two pinch-hitting chances.

Cedeno walked Mayberry with one out in the seventh and Mayberry moved up to second when Brown grounded out for the second out. Righty Hector Ambriz came on to face Frandsen and Frandsen flew to center to leave Mayberry at second.

Mayberry continues to walk at a much better rate. Thirteen walks and a .458 on-base percentage over his last 72 plate appearances.

Ambriz struck Kratz out swinging for the first out in the eighth. Schierholtz, who entered the game in the bottom of the seventh was next. Lefty Wesley Wright came in to pitch to him and struck him out swinging for the second out. Rollins was next and drew a walk. Ruiz hit for Bastardo and moved Rollins up to second with a single. Rollins stole third, the 400th stolen base of his career, before Utley grounded out to leave the runners at the corners.

Second big chance for Utley with runners on. He grounded out to leave the bases loaded in the sixth.

Rollins has stolen 27 bases this year and been caught just five times.

The Phillies were down 6-4 when they hit in the ninth. Howard was the first hitter and singled to left off of righty Wilton Lopez. Lopez struck Mayberry out looking 0-2 for the second out and Brown grounded into a double-play to end the game.

Seems like a good a time as any to remind that our five-hitter breaks up lefties Pierre, Utley, Howard and Brown hitting two, three, four and six and is hitting 231/302/350 against righties for the year.

Rollins was 0-for-3 in the game and walked twice.

Pierre 2-for-3 with a walk. He’s hitting .440 so far in September. 320/365/371 over his last 111 plate appearances.

Utley 1-for-4 with a walk. Two big ground outs to end the inning in the sixth and again in the eighth. 345/486/483 over his last 37 plate appearances.

Howard 1-for-4 with an RBI. 179/264/295 over his last 91 plate appearances.

Mayberry 1-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. 353/476/569 over his last 56 plate appearances. 298/379/489 in 161 plate appearances since Victorino and Pence were traded.

Brown 0-for-3 and walked twice. He’s hitting just .241 over his last nine starts but on-basing .389 thanks to six walks in 36 plate appearances. Cedeno got him to ground out in the seventh, dropping his line against lefties to 188/297/344 on the year.

Frandsen 1-for-4 with an RBI in his return to the lineup. 5-for-21 (.238) with five singles so far in September.

Kratz was 1-for-4 with an RBI-double, which was the only extra-base hit of the game for the Phillies. He’s 1-for-his-last-17.

Hamels (14-6, 3.03) faces righty Bud Norris (5-12, 4.93) tonight. The Phillies have won five of the last six games that Hamels has started. In those outings he’s thrown to a 2.22 ERA and a 1.01 ratio. In five of his last six starts he hasn’t allowed a home run (he allowed two homers in the other start). Norris had had two good starts in a row, allowing just one run over 12 1/3 innings, before allowing five runs in 5 1/3 against the Reds his last time out. He has a 1.90 ERA in his ten starts at home and a 7.34 ERA in his 16 starts on the road this season.


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