Having been eliminated from playoff consideration, the Phillies still had a chance to serve as spoilers, and ruin the Rockies’ chances of winning the National League West. Instead, they seem determined to give the Rockies as good a shot as possible at taking the division crown.
For the second straight game, the Phillies’ starting pitcher was knocked out early, and the team gave up ten runs. And for the second straight game, the hitters didn’t provide much of an answer in return.
This time, it was Vince Velasquez was the starter who got knocked around, giving up six runs in 3.2 innings. The various relievers called in after Velasquez departed didn’t distinguish themselves either. I had forgotten that Drew Anderson was a member of the Phillies’ roster, and after his performance on Tuesday, I think the rest of the Phillies wish that Gabe Kapler had forgotten him as well.
On the other hand, Luis Garcia had a strong ninth inning. The man may pitch poorly if you bring him into a key situation, and he’s never met an inherited runner that he didn’t try to let score; but if you need someone to pitch the ninth when you’re down by seven, Garcia is the right man for the job!
The most notable aspect of the game for the Phillies was the performance of Odubel Herrera. There is a (fast-growing) subset of the Phillies’ fan base that does not like Herrera, and wants the team to trade him as soon as possible. Tuesday night’s game provided them with plenty of ammunition.
In the first inning he came to the plate with one out and a runner on base. He hit a ground ball, and didn’t seem to give his utmost effort to beat out the double play. He followed that up by dropping a ball in right field. Naturally, he hit an RBI single in his next at bat. It’s like he tries to be as frustrating as possible.
With the defeat, the Phillies have now lost six straight games to fall one game below .500. The team seems to have stopped trying, and the only suspense surrounding this team is whether or not they can win another game for the rest of the season.