Matt Moore Problems for the Phillies in 9-4 loss to the Cardinals on Saturday
Dave Dombrowksi and the Phillies made a ton of offseason moves to re-tool the roster in hopes of making the Phillies a playoff competitor. After a hot start against two division rivals in the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves, the Phillies have now lost six of eight games thanks to a 9-4 to the St. Louis Cardinals yesterday.
One of the biggest problems, as we all know, is the centerfield position. The Phillies have now gone 11 straight games without a hit from their starting centerfielder. Adam Haseley has left the team for personal reasons, Roman Quinn has been everything except productive, and Mickey Moniak, although a very small sample size, hasn’t been able to provide production over the last two games.
As we await the start of Minor League Baseball to see how Scott Kingery and Odubel Herrera have been performing, the Phillies have no choice but to rely on Quinn and Moniak until more help is available.
After scoring 9 runs in the series opener against the Cardinals, the Phillies offense without Bryce Harper (stiff lower back) struggled to bring runners home yesterday. The Phillies were 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position, left 11 men on base, and struck out 13 times. Over the first 14 games, the Phillies have struck out 10 plus times in nine games. Yesterday they left the bases loaded in the first inning, and only scored one run. They also left the bases loaded in the ninth inning.
Moore was unable to give his team a chance to win yesterday. He allowed back-to-back homers in the third inning and Jojo Romero, who is dealing with some velocity issues, gave up back-to-back homers in the fourth inning. Yadier Molina homered twice for the Cardinals and the lack of pitching depth was on full display for the Phillies.
Luckily for the Phillies, Aaron Nola will pitch today and Chase Anderson will take the mound tomorrow night for the series opener against the San Francisco Giants. Girardi said yesterday that he is not concerned with Moore since we are still in the early goings of the 2021 season and that Moore would still be in the rotation for his next start. There’s reason for concern, given the fact that his next start will be against the Rockies at Coors field, where Moore has allowed 32 hits and 24 runs in just under 15 innings of work in Colorado.
The Phillies do have Spencer Howard in Triple-A and of course, everyone’s favorite Vincent Velasquez as alternative options for the starting rotation. Spencer Howard isn’t ready to pitch at the Major League Level. He made a brief appearance against the Mets in the nightmare doubleheader last week and did not impress. Velasquez, seems to be a viable option but for only one inning, meaning that he’s no answer to any rotation problems either.
Bryce Harper woke up yesterday with a stiff back. As a precautionary measure, the Phillies decided to keep him out of the lineup yesterday.
Jean Segura left yesterday’s game with an upset stomach and I’ve never felt so relatable to a Phillies player while watching the Cardinals score six runs in the third.
The Phillies are 7-7 on the season, 6-2 at home, and 1-5 on the road. They are currently in a tie for second place in the NL East with the Miami Marlins. The Mets hold first place with a 6-4 record.
Aaron Nola will be on the mound looking for the series win against the Cardinals today at 1:05pm
Mandatory Credit: Getty Images