MLB Winter Meetings: Phillies content without making a splash, Rob Thomson didn’t watch the World Series, and MLB Rule 5 Draft update
MLB Winter Meetings are underway in Nashville, Tennessee and I have a few updates for…
The Phillies stuck out sixteen times and could muster only two hits other than Kyle Schwarber home runs in a lackluster 3-2 loss to the Nationals
Nationals (29-53) Beat Phillies (43-39)
This Kyle Schwarber guy is pretty good, huh ?
Schwarber hit two more home runs in Wednesday’s night loss; good for his National League leading 26th and 27th dingers of the season and his second consecutive multi-homer game. He accounted for two of the Phillies four hits and has been flat out carrying this team of late with his super-human performances.
With the two additional dingers, Schwarber is only four home runs away from matching Mike Schmidt for the most home runs before the All-Star break.
Nationals starting pitcher Josiah Gray had the entire Phillies lineup not named Kyle completely off-balance from the start of the game. He struck out a season and career high 11 hitters while inducing weak contact over and over again off the bat. Other than the two home runs, Gray allowed only a single in the first inning to Schwarber and another single to Nick Castellanos in the 6th.
Chalk it up to simply a bad offensive night. It’s something this team is going struggle to avoid as it adjusts to life without Bryce Harper. Yet, even with Harper in the lineup the Phillies rarely ever give Aaron Nola enough run support.
Aaron Nola pitched well tonight despite taking the loss. He entered the night among the NL’s leaders in strikeouts per 9 innings but only had three tonight. Nola was cruising entering the 7th inning, but allowed back-to-back singles before giving up a 2-RBI double to Luis Garcia. The ball was hit hard off the bat toward the center field fence and Odubel Herrera badly misplayed the baseball allowing the go-ahead run to score.
Was the ball catchable? Yes it was, although it would have been a fantastic defense play. Herrera either didn’t see the ball clearly or just sort of lost track of where he was in the field because it looked ugly as hell. At this point I am not sure why Herrera is even out there in centerfield. At best, he grades out as an average fielder and I think we have all seen enough evidence to agree that may be a stretch. Offensively, he has stretches where he can carry this team, but this season they are few and far between as his OPS+ of 93 puts him below-average offensively.
I don’t mean to overly pick on the guy, but I would much rather see Matt Vierling or Mickey Moniak roaming the green expanse at CBP.
The Phillies absolutely need to come out and take the series rubber match tomorrow against this awful Nationals team. Its a day game tomorrow with the first pitch schedule for 4:05 pm.
Former Phillies second basemen Caesar Hernandez puts the Nationals on the board with
Kyle Schwarber had two home runs last night and he adds his 26th of the season off of Nationals starter Josiah Gray.
Kyle Schwarber hits his second home run of the game and 27th of the season in the 6th inning to give the Phils back the lead.
Odubel Herrera badly outplays a ball that in his defense was hit with some juice out to deep center field.
Corey Knebel allowed a leadoff double, yet was able to escape the top of the 9th inning unscathed after striking out Lane Thomas.
The Phillies take on the Washington Nationals in the final game of a three-game set at Citizens Bank Park on Wednesday.
Joan Adon (1-11, 6.97) will toe the rubber facing off against Bailey Falter (0-2, 4.88) with the first pitch scheduled for 4:05 pm.
NBC Sports Philadelphia will carry the broadcast of the game.
Mandatory Photo Credit: The Sacramento Bee