I’m not sure what’s wrong with Roy Halladay. I am sure the Phillies have worked hard to try to figure it out, but whatever’s going on behind the scenes, what’s happening on the field isn’t working. What’s happening on the field is that Halladay keeps pitching and keeps getting hammered. Last night they changed up his catcher and Halladay allowed seven runs over four miserable innings, upping his ERA for the year to 14.73 for the year after two starts, as the Mets pounded the Phils 7-2.
The Phillies are 0-4 in games started by Hamels or Halladay and 2-1 in games started by anyone else. That duo has combined to throw to a 12.50 ERA in their four starts and gone an average of about four and a half innings per start.
The Phils have two quality starts in the seven games they’ve played, one by Lee and one by Lannan, and they’ve won both of those games. 0-5 in the games where they didn’t get a quality start and their starters have gone an average of about 4.7 innings in those games and thrown to an 11.57 ERA.
The bullpen, very strong at the back end, lacked a middle man when the season started. The Phillies have tried to use Durbin, Horst and Valdes in the middle innings, but they’ve had to use them a lot and none of the three has pitched well. Horst leads that group with a 6.75 ERA and the trio has combined to throw to an 8.16 ERA. Durbin and Horst are both on pace to make about 93 appearances for the season. Horst is on pace to throw about 123 innings in relief, which would be more than his career high of 31 1/3. Valdes is on pace to throw about 131 innings — he’s 35 and has thrown 107 1/3 innings for his career.
The Phillies are 2-5 on the year after losing 7-2 to the New York Mets last night in game one of a three-game set.
Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went four innings, allowing seven runs on six hits and three walks. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and a three-run homer by John Buck. He struck out three.
After two starts, Halladay has a 14.73 ERA and a 2.45 ratio. Opponents have hit .353 against him. In 7 1/3 innings he’s walked six and allowed three home runs.
He struck out David Wright in a 1-2-3 first.
Marlon Byrd doubled to center with one out in the second. Lucas Duda was next and Halladay hit him 2-2, putting men on first and second for John Buck. Buck got ahead in the count and hit a 2-0 pitch out to right. 3-0 Mets. Ruben Tejada was next and he drew a walk. Pitcher Matt Harvey tried to bunt Tejada to second, but struck out for the second out. Kirk Nieuwenhuis grounded to Halladay to end the frame.
Daniel Murphy walked to start the third and moved up to second on a ground out by Wright. Ike Davis fouled out to Howard for the second out before Byrd walked on a 3-2 pitch Halladay thought caught the outside part of the plate. Duda singled into center, scoring Murphy to make it 4-0. Buck grounded to Young to finally set the Mets down.
Revere really can’t throw. Not that it needs to go near the top of the list of Phillie problems or that someone who could would have gunned down Murphy. It’s just a thing.
Halladay had thrown 78 pitches through three innings.
He struck out Nieuwenhuis in a 1-2-3 fourth.
The New York lead was cut to 4-1 when Murphy doubled to right-center to start the fifth. He moved up to third on a wild pitch. With the infield in, Wright singled to left, scoring Murphy. 5-1. Davis moved Wright up to third with a single and that was it for Halladay. Durbin came in to pitch to the righty Byrd and struck him out swinging for the first out. Duda was next and Durbin walked him, loading the bases for Buck. Buck popped to Utley for the second out, but Tejada lined a single into center, scoring two runners and sending Duda to third with the Mets up 7-1. Harvey went down on a ball handled by Quintero to end the frame.
Durbin faces five hitters in the frame, allowing a walk and a two-run single with both runs charged to Halladay. Looks like a scoreless inning for Durbin in the box score. Not so much.
Fourth appearance of the year for Durbin. He has an 8.10 ERA and a 2.70 ratio through 3 1/3 innings. He’s pitched two days in a row.
Horst started the sixth. Righty Collin Cowgill hit for the lefty Nieuwenhuis and Horst struck him out swinging for the first out. Muprhy flew to left for the second before Wright doubled to center. Horst struck Davis out to leave Wright at second.
Horst came back and struck Duda out in a 1-2-3 seventh.
Fourth appearance for Horst as well. Two scoreless innings in two of them. In one he allowed a run in an inning and in the other he was charged with three runs in a third of a frame. He faced seven batters over two innings last night, getting six outs and allowing Wright’s double. Like Durbin, he has thrown two days in a row.
Valdes threw a 1-2-3 eighth. Righty Justin Turner hit for the pitcher Harvey and struck out for the second out.
Valdes was back to pitch the ninth with the New York lead cut to 7-2. Murphy led off with a double to right and Valdes walked Wright behind Murphy. Valdes got the next three, though, getting Davis to foul out to Young for the first out, striking Byrd out for the second and getting Duda to ground to second for the third.
Eight batters for Valdes in the game. Six outs, a double and a walk. Three appearances for the year — last night was the first that wasn’t awful. He has a 9.53 ERA and a 2.12 ratio for the season. Opponents have hit .360 against him.
Unlike Durbin and Horst, Valdes hasn’t thrown two days in a row, but he did throw 26 pitches last night. Horst and Durbin both threw 20. The Phillies really need Cliff Lee to go deep into games these days — it’s not reasonable to expect him to go eight innings every start.
Overall the pen threw five shutout innings, in the game, allowing three hits and two walks. They weren’t quite that good, though, cause Durbin allowed a hit in the walk in relief of Halladay in the fifth with the runs charged to the starter.
Phillie relievers have walked 13 in 22 1/3 innings for the season, which is too many.
The Phillie lineup against righty Matt Harvey went (1) Revere (2) Rollins (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Young (6) Brown (7) Nix (8) Quintero. Quintero gets the start behind the plate after Halladay remarked about not being on the same page with Kratz in his first start of the season.
Revere led off the bottom of the first with a walk. He stole second and moved up to third on a ground out by Rollins. Utley was next and the Mets bizarrely brought the infield in. Utley popped to third for the second out. Howard struck out swinging 0-2 to leave Revere at third.
Great job by Revere to get things going with the walk and the steal. Less great job by Utley and Howard as the old guard of the Phils gets set down by Harvey. Utley can’t bring the runner home from third with one out.
Down 3-0, the Phillies went in order in the second.
Quintero led off the third with the Phils down 4-0 and blooped a single into center. Halladay tried to bunt and couldn’t, then struck out looking for the first out. Revere hit into a double-play to set the Phillies down.
Halladay can’t get the bunt down. You probably won’t see Revere ground into a ton of double-plays. He was just nipped at first this time.
Rollins doubled to center to start the fourth and moved up to third on a single by Utley. Howard was next and flew to right for the first out. Rollins tagged and scored to get the Phils on the board at 4-1. Young struck out and Brown flew to center to leave Utley stranded.
Good no strikeout by Howard gets the Phils on the board. Four extra-base hits for Rollins in the early going. Three doubles and a homer in 32 plate appearances with an isolated power of .200.
The Phillies were down 7-1 when they hit in the fifth. Nix led off with a walk. Quintero struck out for the first out. Carrera hit for Durbin and struck out swinging for the second. Revere struck out swinging for the third.
Utley reached on an error by Ike Davis with one out in the sixth. Howard and Young went down behind him.
Harvey set the Phils down in order in the seventh.
Lefty Josh Edgin started the eighth. Kratz, who had entered defensively in the top of the inning, led off with a double down the third base line. Kratz went to third on a ground out by Revere and scored on another by Rollins. 7-2. Utley flew to left for the third out.
Edgin was back for the ninth and got Howard, Young and Brown in order.
Revere 0-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base. Did his best to get the Phillies started in the bottom of the first, but they didn’t score with the help of Utley’s popup to third with one out. Revere is 7-for-30 (.233) with seven singles so far.
Rollins 1-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
Utley 1-for-4. No RBI in the first with Revere on third and one out. 3-for-his-last-12 with three singles.
Howard 0-for-3 with an RBI and two strikeouts. 0-for-9 with five strikeouts against lefties for the year. 4-for-27 with four singles overall.
Young was 0-for-4 in the game. He and Mayberry are the unlikely team leaders in walks. They each have four.
Brown 0-for-4 with a strikeout. He is 3-for-his-last-19 after going 3-for-7 to start the season. 4-for-21 (.190) against right-handed pitching.
Nix 0-for-2 with a walk. 3-for-14 with three singles on the year.
Quintero 1-for-3. Failed to spark a return to excellence for Halladay. 1-for-6 on the season.
Cliff Lee (1-0, 0.00) faces righty Dillon Gee (0-1, 1.42) tonight in game two of the set. Lee allowed two singles and struck out eight over eight shutout innings in his first start on the year. Gee was also good in his lone start, allowing a run over 6 1/3 innings against the Padres.