After it looked like they were finally starting to go on a run, the Philadelphia Phillies fell short and dropped two of three to the San Diego Padres. With this past weekend’s series loss, they fall to 64-60 on the season and have lost four of their last five series. The Phillies are now two games behind the Chicago Cubs for the second Wild Card spot and nine games behind the Braves in the National League East.
Here are three numbers that highlight the Phillies’ bad performance in this series:
Zero: Rhys Hoskins hits in the series
This is beyond just a regular slump for Rhys Hoskins. He has always been a hot and cold hitter, but never this bad for this amount of time:
Rhys Hoskins MLB ranks since August 4th (193 qualified hitters):
BA – 193rd (.070)
SLG% – 193rd (.093)
OPS – 192nd (.348)
RBI – T-190th (1)
He remains ice cold.
— Jonny Heller (@jonnyheller) August 18, 2019
This is obviously quite alarming, but it isn’t something that can’t be fixed. Hoskins is still walking at a high rate and seeing a lot of pitches, but is not making the same quality contact that he had been earlier in the season:
Rhys Hoskins batted ball splits in 2019:
1st half – 48.7% FB%, 18.3% HR/FB, 23.6% LD%
2nd half – 57% FB%, 8.2% HR/FB, 12.3% LD%
He is hitting a lot less line drives in exchange for a lot more fly balls, and he is hitting less fly balls for home runs. This comes down to LA and EV.
— Jonny Heller (@jonnyheller) August 19, 2019
The Phillies need Hoskins to revert back to his old self soon, as he’s becoming a black hole at the plate has dragged down an offense that needs all the help it can get.
Six: scoreless IP by San Diego bullpen on Saturday and Sunday
The story of the Phillies four-game winning streak last week was offense. They scored 30 runs during the stretch with 20 extra-base hits, dominating the opposing pitchers. This included Thursday night, when they had some late-game magic against the Cubs bullpen that led to a Bryce Harper walk-off grand slam.
After scoring eight runs in the first game of this series, however, the offense disappeared. Although the Phillies jumped out to a 3-0 lead on Saturday and a 1-0 lead on Sunday, their offense was unable to sustain the success they had during their last few games. After Zach Eflin and Nick Pivetta blew the lead in Saturday’s game, Padres starter Dinelson Lamet settled down before the trio of Matt Strahm, Andres Munoz and Kirby Yates shut down the Phillies offense in the last three innings and allowed just one baserunner. It was the same story, different day on Sunday when Craig Stammen along with Strahm, Munoz and Yates allowed one total baserunner in the last three innings to shut the Phillies down in the one-run game.
Phillies pitching has been suspect all season long. So when the Phillies get performances from their starters like they got from Jason Vargas on Sunday, they have to take advantage and score enough runs to win. The Padres bullpen didn’t allow that.
Zero: 5-game winning streaks on the season
Every time it looks like the Phillies are about to go on a run, they quickly lose one or two games and fall back into playing .500 baseball or worse. This trend continued this weekend, as a four-game winning streak and 3-0 lead in the fifth game was not enough for their first five-game streak on the season. If this continues, it would be the first time in nearly three decades that the Phillies had zero five-game winning streaks in a season:
With tonight's loss, the Phillies still don't have a 5-game winning streak in 2019.
The 1990 Phillies are the last Phillies team not to win five games in a row all season. Even in the strike-shortened 1994 season, the Phillies won six in a row at one point.
— Tim Kelly (@TimKellySports) August 18, 2019
The Phillies are one of several teams still in the mix for a Wild Card spot. But if they are going to beat out all of those teams, they have to go on a run of some kind rather than continuing to play .500 baseball.
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