Phillies lose second straight to Marlins, 3-2 final
All last week, the Philadelphia Phillies were scoring a ton of runs. They went seven straight games scoring seven or more runs. They won six straight games to climb back into the National League East division race. Then, they headed to Florida to face the Miami Marlins. The Marlins are not a good baseball team. They are 57-79 and a half game out of last place in the NL East Standings. Unfortunately for the Phillies, they simply can’t seem to beat the fish, and lost their second straight game yesterday to the Marlins by a score of 3-2.
Can we all just stop and forget about past years against the Marlins? I am well aware that the Phillies lost 5-of-7 to the fish last year and missed the playoffs and that they are now 11-20 over the past three years when playing in Florida. None of that matters this year. The Phillies again, squandered a game they should have won, and the Braves lost again in Colorado. Even splitting the first two games against the Marlins would have put the Phillies within one game of first place in the National League East. As we all know, that did not happen.
After throwing 23 pitches in the first inning, Ranger Suarez settled in to throw five scoreless innings while only allowing two hits. He struck out seven batters while walking only two. His ERA is now a 1.38 and he has allowed one or zero runs in six of his last seven starts this season.
Yesterday, Suarez, despite pitching great, was pulled after 71 pitches. In his last two outings he threw 99 pitches and 95 pitches. Let me be clear, I would have left Ranger Suarez in the game yesterday. It’s September and the Phillies bullpen and pitching as a whole has been less than reliable to say the least. Pulling a pitcher who was in a groove with a low pitch count will never make sense to me. Girardi pulled Suarez because of his pitch count and harped on the fact that Suarez was experiencing tightness in his triceps, which was likely coming from moving to the rotation from the bullpen.
Okay fine. Suarez comes out. Hector Neris pitched in relief and was able to throw a beautiful frame, allowing zero hits and striking out two. Brogdon pitched another beautiful frame, allowing a walk and striking out one. The Phillies then turned to Archie Bradley, with a 2-0 lead. Bradley allowed three runs, while striking out three, and the Phillies lost the game 3-2.
Yes, you can be upset at Girardi for pulling Suarez, but honestly this loss falls on the offense and Archie Bradley. Bradley was brought to the Phillies to close down games and be a strong arm in the bullpen. Yesterday, he failed to do that. On offense, Herrera was 0-for-5 in the leadoff spot. Harper was 1-for-4, Cutch was 1-for-4, and the Phillies as a whole only managed to get eight hits against the Marlins.
McCutchen hit a home run in the top of the 4th inning and Ranger Suarez himself had the only other RBI on the day. For a team that is trying to reach the postseason for the first time in a decade, they are going to need to get a little more help than what they got yesterday at the plate to actually compete over the final few weeks of the season.
Today, Zack Wheeler was scheduled to start but now has been moved to Monday. We will have a bullpen game in Miami as the Phillies look to avoid the sweep against the Miami Marlins.
Must win? Yes. From here on out, they are all must wins.