Well, at least we got to see Papelbon in a tie game.
The Phillies have a bunch of problems in a bunch of areas these days, but the bullpen seems willing to go the extra mile to get itself noticed in a competitive environment. After several games where he stayed in the pen late in a tie game on the road, Papelbon pitched in a tie game at home last night. Didn’t go well. Entering with the score knotted at 2-2, Papelbon gave up a three-run home run to Jordany Valdespin and the Mets beat the Phils 5-2.
The Phillies have played 30 games this season. Over the first 14 games of the year, the bullpen pitched to a 2.01 ERA 31 1/3 innings. Over the last 16 games, Phillie relievers have thrown 39 innings in which they have pitched to a 7.15 ERA and a 1.69 ratio. Combine those results and you get the worst bullpen in baseball — at least by ERA. After allowing three runs in two innings last night, the bullpen ERA for the Phils for the year is up to 4.86. The Angels have the second-worst bullpen ERA at 4.76.
Over the last two games, we’ve now seen the Phillies hit Bryce Harper on purpose, say they did it on purpose, get suspended for it, cost themselves a run they didn’t have to spare on an interference call at second base because their runner was so far off the bag and into the shortstop the ump didn’t have much of a choice and put their shoulder into the catcher’s jaw on a play at the plate, knocking him out of the game.
Not sure if any of that is the kind of stuff that’s going to pull the Phillies out of their funk or not. It hasn’t so far.
The Phillies are 14-16 on the year after losing to the Mets 5-2 last night. Coming off of a 6-3 stretch, the Phils have lost three of four.
Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out seven and dropped his ERA on the year to 3.28. He has the fifth-best ERA among the six pitchers who have started games for the Phils this year.
He set the Mets down in order in the first. Andres Torres was the first batter of the game and ripped a ball to the gap in left-center, but Mayberry made a diving catch to record the out.
Halladay started the second with a 1-0 lead. Daniel Murphy singled to right with one out and stole second as Halladay struck out Ike Davis swinging for the second out. Justin Turner grounded out to leave Murphy at second.
Up 2-0, Halladay set the Mets down in order in the third, fourth and fifth.
He got Josh Thole to pop to Galvis for the first out in the sixth before lefty Mike Baxter hit for the pitcher Jon Niese. Baxter popped to Rollins for the second out before Halladay walked Andres Torres. Torres moved up to second on a single by Kirk Nieuwenhuis, putting men on first and second for David Wright. Wright doubled down the third base line, clearing the bases and tying the game at 2-2. Halladay struck Lucas Duda out swinging for the third out.
Davis singled with one out in the seventh. Halladay got Turner on a line drive to left for the second out before Thole moved Davis up to second with an infield single. Righty Scott Hairston hit for the pitcher Manny Acosta and popped a ball up in the infield, right behind the mound. Galvis made a nice sliding catch in front of Rollins to end the frame.
Bastardo started the eighth with the game still tied and walked Torres to start the inning. Nieuwenhuis bunted Torres to second with the first out. Bastardo walked the righty Wright intentionally, putting runners on first and second for Duda. Duda grounded into a double-play to set New York down.
Don’t remember Antonio Bastardo walking a lot of guys intentionally last year? Me neither. The intentional walk to Wright was the first he has issued in his career.
Bastardo hasn’t allowed a hit or a run over his last four appearances, each of which have been one full inning. Over those four outings, his ERA has dropped from 5.40 to 2.45. He has walked six in 7 1/3 innings for the season.
Papelbon started the ninth. He walked Ike Davis, who is 1-for-his-last-13 and hitting .173 on the year, with one out. Papelbon struck Turner out swinging for the second out before Mike Nickeas doubled to left, moving Davis up to third. Lefty Jordany Valdespin hit for the pitcher Tim Byrdak and hit an 0-1 pitch out to right, putting the Mets on top 5-2. Torres flew to left for the third out.
Papelbon’s ERA for the year rises from 0.82 to 3.00 with the outing. He allowed three home runs in 64 1/3 innings in 2011 and has allowed two so far in 12 innings in 2012.
Papelbon threw 30 pitches in the game and Bastardo 22.
The Phillies lineup against lefty Jon Niese went (1) Rollins (2) Mayberry (3) Victorino (4) Pence (5) Wigginton (6) Ruiz (7) Polanco (8) Galvis. Mayberry starts in left and second in the order for the first time on the season. Wigginton at first against the lefty.
Rollins led off the bottom of the first with a double and moving up to third on a bobble error by Torres. Mayberry was next and flew to center for the first out, deep enough for Rollins to tag and score, putting the Phillies on top 1-0. Victorino singled to left before Pence grounded to third with Victorino forced at second for the second out. Wigginton struck out looking to end the inning.
Ruiz walked to start the bottom of the second and scored when Polanco ripped a double to the gap in left-center. 2-0. Galvis was next and grounded to short for the first out. Polanco moved up to third, but Halladay struck out behind Galvis for the second out of the inning. Rollins struck out to leave Polanco at third.
No more runs for the Phils after putting Polanco on third with one out. Halladay strikes out with one down and a runner on third.
Victorino walked with one out in the third, but Pence and Wigginton both grounded out behind him.
Ruiz walked to start the fourth, but the Phils went in order behind him.
Mayberry singled to left with one out in the fifth. Victorino fouled out to Wright for the second out before Pence drew a walk, moving Mayberry up to second. Wigginton struck out swinging to leave both runners stranded.
It was 2-2 when righty Manny Acosta set the Phillies down in order in the sixth.
Righty Bobby Parnell started the seventh for the Mets. Pierre hit for Halladay and drew a walk. Rollins moved him to second with a single before Mayberry flew to right for the first out. Victorino reached on an infield single to load the bases for Pence. Pence grounded to second. The Mets went to second for one, but Pence just beat the relay to first. It would have been a run for the Phils as Pierre crossed the plate, but Victorino was called for interference at second. Victorino was out, Pence was out and the inning was over.
Victorino was way out of the base line at second.
Wigginton started the eighth with a single to center before Ruiz bunted for a hit, putting runners on first and second with nobody out. Polanco bunted the runners up to second and third with the first out. Galvis chopped a ball back to the pitcher. Parnell fielded and threw home as Wiggington arrived. Wigginton put his shoulder into Thole’s jaw, but somehow Thole hung onto the ball to retire the out. Thole had to leave the game and Nickeas came on to catch for New York. Lefty Tim Byrdak came on to pitch to the lefty Nix. Kratz hit for Nix and struck out swinging to leave the runners at first and third.
Amazing job by Thole to hang onto the ball. Big at-bat for Kratz, who got ahead 2-0, but went down swinging on a 3-2 pitch that was outside.
Righty Frank Francisco set the Phillies down in order in the ninth. Rollins was the first batter for the Phils and put a pretty bunt down the first base line, but Francisco made a nice play to get to the ball and Davis put on an acrobatic swiping tag to get Rollins for the first out.
Rollins was 2-for-5 with a double in the series. He has five extra-base hits in 127 plate appearances for the year and a slugging percentage of .274.
Mayberry 1-for-4 with an RBI and some nice defensive work in left.
Victorino 2-for-4 with a walk. 333/394/533 in 33 plate appearances so far in May.
Pence 0-for-3 with a walk and five men left on base. He has walked in about 4.8% of his plate appearances so far in 2012. His career rate is about 7.0% and his worst mark for any season is 5.4% in 2007.
Wigginton 1-for-4 with two strikeouts and four men left on base. He’s 1-for-his-last-13 with eight strikeouts.
Ruiz 1-for-2 with two walks. 372/417/721 over his last 48 plate appearances.
Polanco 1-for-3 with a double and an RBI. 364/391/455 over his last 47 plate appearances.
Galvis 0-for-4 with a strikeout and four men left on base. There are 111 NL players with at least 75 plate appearances — Galvis’s .215 on-base percentage is 110th and his .289 slugging percentage is 106th.
Blanton (3-3, 2.83) faces righty Miguel Batista (0-1, 6.92) tonight. Blanton was outstanding his last time out, throwing a complete-game shutout against the Braves. His 2.83 ERA is second-best among Phillie starters and he’s walked just three in 35 innings on the year. Bastista has mostly been appearing in relief for the Mets. He’s made one start on the year and that was a disaster as he allowed six runs over 3 2/3 innings against the Giants on April 23. He hasn’t gone more than 3 2/3 innings in any appearance this season.
Cole Hamels was suspended for five games.