No one here at Phillies Nation is shocked by this turn of events, especially if you read Eric Seidman’s article on Thursday, accentuating the Phillies/Astros rivalry of the past few seasons. Again, the struggles continues on Sunday as the Phillies fell to the Astros, 7-6, to lose three of four games. The Phillies find themselves 3 1/2 out in the wild card standings. (As of this writing, the Dodgers and Cardinals are tied at 2-2).
What had once been a strength, and very recently, the bullpen again blew up in the later innings. Antonio Bastardo and Phillippe Aumont combined to give up four runs in the seventh, blowing a 4-3 Phillies lead.
Roy Halladay wasn’t great, but was good enough to keep the Phillies in it. He allowed three runs in six innings, but labored by throwing 111 pitches.
With the sticks, six runs should have been more than enough. Jimmy Rollins went 3-for-4 and both Ryan Howard and Domonic Brown knocked in a pair of runs.
So, after another disappointing series against a Houston team that pretty much owns the Phillies, there is much work to be done – and a lot of hoping. There are just 16 games remaining, they’ve slipped one-game under-.500, and they need help from several teams. The Phillies cling to hope, but their pulse is becoming more and more faint.