Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Phils Fall Again

The Phils dropped their 6th straight last night, losing to the Oakland A's by a score of 5 - 2. The loss wasted a pretty good effort by starting pitcher Jamie Moyer, who gave up 3 earned runs over 6-2/3 innings and struck out 9.

This game mirrored other Phillies games recently, where the team was simply unable to string hits together. They seem especially unable to string clutch hits together. The fact that they were baffled by a guy like Joe Blanton, who was 3 - 10 coming into the game with an ERA approaching 5, speaks volumes about the hitting drought the team is currently experiencing. The Phils got only one run off of Blanton, courtesy of Pat Burrell's 19th home run of the year. The rest of the offense was supplied by a Ryan Howard RBI single that drove home Shane Victorino.

On the downside, the Chase Utley "mix up" continues. Dating back to June 14th, Utley is now 1 for his last 29. Utley is my favorite player on this team, but to paraphrase Larry Bowa, our 3-hole hitter is "killing this team" right now. This team needs Utley to figure out his issues and start raking again.

The series with the A's continues with Kyle Kendrick facing the A's Greg Smith. The game starts at 10:05pm and will be on CSN-TV.

Did you notice?

- Look, I understand that maybe you can make an argument that Charlie Manuel should have pulled Jamie Moyer in the 7th inning, when it was apparent he was missing his spots. But I thought Moyer deserved the benefit of the doubt and frankly, I wouldn't kill Manuel for leaving him in. If Moyer is getting into the 7th inning, the Phillies HAVE to win that game. Pitching is not the problem in this losing streak and I would hate for some Charlie Manuel nit-picking to take the focus off of the broken offense.

- Ruiz's double play in the bottom of the 7th was a killer. The Phillies should have gotten at least one run out of that baseloaded situation. If you want to second guess a Manuel decision, how about questioning the leaving of Pat Burrell on the base paths in the 7th inning after taking a walk? Would Taguchi have scored on the Pedro Feliz single, which occurred just prior to the Ruiz DP? It's not like Manuel has never pulled Burrell in that situation before.

- Geoff Jenkins. 3 strikeouts in 4 ABs as the DH. Thanks for that.

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