Not again!? The Phillies had a 4-0 lead after two innings that disappeared in a sloppy seventh inning as the Mets rallied for a 7-4 victory.
BULLS#!T PEN/DEFENSIVE MELTDOWN
-Again!? Chad Qualls would have gotten out of the seventh inning having given up just one run. But the defense screwed him over even more. Not condoning giving up that one run, but, it could have been over and done with. Then, inexplicably, the Phillies fail to record an out on a rundown, and Pete Orr throws the ball down the left field line to allow the Mets to tie the game. Fundamentally garbage.
-Antonio Bastardo then allowed Lucas Duda to single home David Wright with two outs in the seventh. In summation, Blanton ran out of gas, Qualls gave up a big hit that turned worse with an error, Bastardo gave up one more run for good measure, and the Mets took the lead for good.
-Michael Schwimer allowed two runs in the ninth inning, one of them scoring with Joe Savery on the mound. We keep waiting for the young arms to step up and make people notice, but for Schwimer and Savery, it’s been for all the wrong reasons recently.
-Can the Phillies even do anything about the bullpen? What is the answer here, exactly? Do you throw your starters 115 pitches each and try to stay away from the bullpen? Does Ruben Amaro look to grab someone/anyone from somewhere/anywhere?
-Blanton was lights out early on, going through the first three innings without allowing a hit. Things got sketchy in the fourth inning, where he escaped with just a run from the Mets. He entered the seventh inning, gave up a few baserunners, and was charged with all four runs. Two of them came on the misplay by Orr.
-Overall, not a terrible effort from Blanton. His line would have looked much better had he been assisted properly by his defense and bullpen, but such is life as a Phillies starting pitcher right now.
-His velocity waned a bit as the game wore on, but Blanton did reach 93 on the radar a few times. The good thing is, Blanton is healthy and producing as a starter again.
EARLY RUNS AND NOTHING ELSE
-Crooked numbers in the first two innings was a nice sign. In the first, Hunter Pence went yard. Of course, he swung at the first pitch, which he missed, but connected on the third pitch of the at-bat for his seventh home run of the season.
-It seems like Pence sees too few pitches at the plate, right? Well, there are 33 other hitters who see fewer pitches per plate appearance in the National League than Pence, who looks at an average of 3.73 per/PA. That includes teammates Carlos Ruiz, Shane Victorino, and Freddy Galvis. Omar Infante has the shortest at-bats at 3.28 per/PA.
-In the second inning, the Phillies capitalized on two errors. It wasn’t pretty, but good teams take advantage of what’s given to them. Pete Orr roped a single to centerfield that scored John Mayberry. Shane Victorino doubled Orr home a few batters later. The negative: Shane Victorino and Jimmy Rollins were stranded at second and third base, respectively. Knocking in runners in scoring position has been a fatal flaw of this team thus far.
-In the eighth, the Phillies threatened as Placido Polanco singled and then moved to second on a wild pitch. John Mayberry scorched a ball right at second baseman Daniel Murphy for the first out, but Polanco moved up to third on a second wild pitch. Pete Orr recorded the second out with a terrible at-bat. Ty Wigginton then came on and flied out. Another late-inning wasted opportunity.
SECOND BASE DILEMMA
-Pete Orr had two errors on Tuesday night. He hit a few balls pretty hard and couldn’t do anything with this hands in the field. Freddy Galvis has been the exact opposite. It’s been a tough year for guys trying to live up to the high standards that Chase Utley has set.
-The Phillies will look to salvage a victory on Wednesday night at 7:05 with the always-fun Lee-Gee matchup.