Phillies split double header with Red Sox as the bullpen continues to struggle
Yesterday kicked off a run of 5 doubleheaders between now and September 22nd for the Phillies. The ball club will have 19 games in 15 days, including a massive 7-game series against the Marlins starting tomorrow.
In game one against the Red Sox, rookie Alec Bohm hit a two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the 7th inning to win game one. Bohm drove in four runs on three hits and is quietly becoming the Phillies’ most clutch hitter.
Bohm bailed out shaky performances from both Zach Eflin and Tommy Hunter. Eflin allowed three solo home runs before Hunter came in and lost the lead allowing a solo home run and a bases clearing double. Luckily for the Phillies, who blew yet another lead at the hands of their bullpen, Bohm was there to pick them up for the win.
Game two was a different story. The Phillies lost 5-2, but the good news is that Vince Velasquez did his job through five innings, finishing the night with 5 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 9 K. The Phillies will continue to rely on Velasquez with the crazy amount of games we have over the next 2 weeks so it was great to see him come out and hold his own.
Like I’ve said all season long, this team will live and die with their bullpen. They don’t have a choice. The additions of Phelps, Workman, and Hembree haven’t worked out well. The trio have allowed 18 runs in just over 21 innings of work. With the exception of Jojo Romero and Hector Neris, this bullpen is tough to get behind.
A sweep yesterday would have moved the Phillies into one game of 1st place in the NL East. After the bullpen struggled, it left Philadelphia 1.5 games out of first and only one game ahead of Miami.
Philadelphia will send Jake Arrieta (3-4, 5.67 ERA) to the mound for the first game of a seven-game series tomorrow in Miami. Arrieta pitched great his last outing, but it’s tough to be confident in him since to date, he’s been inconsistent and unable to string together good outings in a row.
This Marlins series will be a season-defining moment for the Phillies. To make it even better, they will likely face top prospect Sixto Sanchez for one of the games. Sanchez was the key piece in the trade for JT Realmuto, who is still set to become a free agent at the end of the season.
In four starts this year, Sixto has put up the following numbers:
25 IP, 21 H, 5 ER, 25 K, 2 BB 1.80 ERA. 0.920 WHIP.
The day after the game he pitches against the Phillies will definitely be interesting if he’s able to put together yet another strong outing.
Enjoy the day off.
Ring that bell, baby.
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Inquirer