Phillies Nation

2019 Postgame Recaps

Offense struggles against Keuchel in loss to Atlanta

Zach Eflin went three and two thirds innings, allowing three unearned runs in tonight’s loss against the Braves. (Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

The Philadelphia Phillies (75-70) fall to the Atlanta Braves (91-56) by a final of 3-1. A three-run home from Tyler Flowers in the fourth was all the Braves needed. The Phillies threatened in the ninth, but great defensive plays from Dansby Swanson and Josh Donaldson sealed the deal for Atlanta.

The Braves would open up the scoring in the fourth inning. Eflin looked sharp through three, only allowing a couple of baserunners on two walks. The only problem was that Eflin’s pitch count was rising fast. The 25-year-old came into the fourth already throwing 56 pitches. He would leave the mound after throwing 39 more and failing to record the third out. The big blow came when Tyler Flowers went up in the zone and crushed a middle-of-the-plate fastball for a three-run home run to give the Braves the lead:

The Phillies would get one back on an RBI fielder’s choice from Scott Kingery. The team had another opportunity to drive in runs in the fifth. The bases were loaded for Bryce Harper. He grounded a low two-seamer into the dirt towards second for an inning-ending double play.

The young arms out the pen came up big for the Phillies. Facing Ronald Acuna Jr. Edgar Garcia induced a fly ball to center field to end the Braves threat in the fourth. Cole Irvin only needed 25 pitches to shut out the Braves through two innings in his best outing in relief so far this season. Mike Morin and Nick Vincent were also solid in the eighth and ninth respectively.

The Braves bullpen impressed as well. Chris Martin, who came into the ballgame to relieve Keuchel, became the first Braves pitcher since Buddy Carlye in 2007 to throw an immaculate inning:

The Braves could have easily added onto their lead if it wasn’t for Harper and Adam Haseley manning the outfield corners. Haseley made yet another excellent diving catch to rob Flowers of an extra-base hit. With two outs and Austin Riley on second and Acuna on first, Ozzie Albies knocked a base hit into right field. Harper fielded it cleanly and threw a long toss to Realmuto to get Riley out at home for his 12th outfield assist of the season.

The winning run was at the plate in the ninth for the Phillies, but the offense failed to produce. Brad Miller was inches away from a hit that would load the bases, but Swanson robbed him with a great jumping grab. Maikel Franco would also fall victim to a great defensive play by a Braves infielder. Down to his final strike, Franco popped up to the third base side. Donaldson reached into the visiting dugout and snagged the ball to record the final out of the game.

Tonight’s loss against the Braves was their eighth of the season against the division leaders, who now have a staggering 15 game lead over the Phillies in the division. They are 2.5 games back of the last Wild Card spot in the National League. A Cubs victory over the Padres in San Diego later tonight could send the Phillies three games back of a playoff berth. The team will send Drew Smyly to the mound in hopes of splitting the four-game set.

Corey Dickerson left the game in the middle innings with left foot soreness after grounding out to third. According to manager Gabe Kapler, the X-Rays on Dickerson came back negative.

Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Performance

Zach Eflin: 3.2 IP, 3H, 3R, 0ER, 3BB, 5SO

Today’s performance won’t take a beating on his ERA as Segura’s error designated the ensuing three-run home run he would give up to Flowers all as unearned runs. That probably won’t make Eflin feel any better about his outing. At first, it seemed like he could grind out five or six innings against a tough Braves lineup. However too many extended at-bats caught up to Eflin and one mistake led to the demise of his outing.

Dallas Keuchel: 6.0 IP, 3H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 8SO

Phillies Nuggets Player of the Game: Dallas Keuchel

The Braves are finally getting what they paid for. Coming into this outing, the former Houston Astros ace had a 0.97 ERA in his last six games. It was going to be a tough challenge for the Phillies tonight to break Keuchel out of his groove and sure enough, the Phillies offense was not up to the task. He limited  hard contact, induced ground balls when he needed them, and got Phillies hitters to chase after his breaking pitches in the dirt. His signing seemed like a mistake at first, but it seems now Keuchel is finally in form just in time for the postseason.

Ticket IQ Next Game

  • Thursday, 7:15 vs. Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park
  • FOX
  • Sportsradio 94 WIPWTTM 1680 (Spanish)

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