The Phillies dropped a very winnable game on Saturday against the Brewers after a late base running blunder (courtesy of a missed call by the umpire) combined with the usual lack of offense allowed Milwaukee to scrape out a 4-3 win. The loss guaranteed a series loss for the Phils, who have either lost or split each of their last four series.
The Phillies put together a rally in the ninth, but it was cut short when Kyle Kendrick was picked off second with one out in the inning. Upon replay it was evident that the second baseman did not catch the ball, less catch it and tag Kendrick out. Kendrick was pinch running for the injured Jimmy Rollins, and if he was on base he would have scored to tie the game on Cesar Hernandez‘s double, which immediately followed.
Milwaukee’s offense struck for four runs, led by catcher Jonathan Lucroy and center fielder Logan Schaeffer who combined to go 5-for-8 with two runs, a double, a homer and two RBI. It was Lucroy’s third homer through the first two games of the series.
Sloppy play haunts Phils again
Both on the bases and in the field, the Phillies have been failing to make fundamental plays of late. Last night they had three errors in their loss to Milwaukee. Today they had another fielding error and a base running blunder (albeit it might have been a bad call, but you still do not want Kendrick to even be in that situation when the game is on the line).
But whether he was safe or not, the Phillies have not been playing sound baseball. Delmon Young‘s throwing error today led directly to Milwaukee runs, while Kendrick being picked off led directly to a missed chance for the Phillies to tie the game. They now have six errors in their last four games, which does not count any mistakes on the base paths, and there have been plenty of those as well.
Situational Woes Continue
The Phillies had their chances in the game against Brewer’s starter Wily Peralta (who entered with a 6.35 ERA and has been very hittable this year), but they failed to capitalize as they should have. Peralta threw seven strong innings, striking out six while allowing two runs for the second time in 12 starts this year (and the other was against the lowly Cubs).
Situational hitting has been a shortcoming for this team all year, and it continued today. The Phils were just 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position, with the one being Erik Kratz‘s RBI single in the fifth. They left eight runners in scoring position to end innings, and left ten men on base overall.
Late in the game they failed to come through on several chances to score. Domonic Brown in the seventh, Kratz in the eighth and Michael Martinez in the ninth all failed to come through with a runner in scoring position and two outs.
Cloyd Rebounds from last outing
Cloyd tossed seven innings today, and he allowed just three runs while scattering eight hits. He walked only one and struck out three Milwaukee batters. Cloyd stayed out of the middle of the plate for the most part today, and worked himself out of a few jams. He allowed at least one runner to reach second base in all but two of his seven innings, but got a few strikeouts in key spots and limited hard contact with runners on base. Cloyd now has three quality starts out of his four total starts with Philadelphia this year.
The Phillies will try to salvage the final game of the series on Sunday, and they certainly will feel comfortable with who they are trotting out to the mound. Cliff Lee (6-2, 2.34 ERA) will take the ball for the Phillies opposite Mike Fiers (1-3, 5.66 ERA) for the Brewers. Lee has allowed only five runs in his last five starts combined, and the Phillies are 5-0 over that stretch. First pitch is set for 1:35 p.m. at Citizen’s Bank Park.