The Phillies played well in the first game of Friday’s doubleheader against the Marlins. They combined good pitching, timely hitting, and strong defense, leading to a 5-2 win. They celebrated that win by pitching poorly, not hitting a lick, and playing poor defense in the nightcap, falling to the Marlins 7-0.
Matt Moore seemed like an odd choice to start the first game off the break, but since his return from the Injured List, he’s been fine as far as fifth starters go in the year 2021. He pitched 4.1 innings and gave up two runs, which doesn’t sound that impressive, but these days, that’s about as good as you’re going to get from back of the rotation starters.
The offensive star in game one was Travis Jankowski. Janky didn’t make a good first impression on Phillies fans thanks to a baserunning blunder, but since then he’s been solid. He got the team on the board in the first inning with a seeing-eye bases-clearing double.
Baseball is a funny game. Here is Travis Jankowski's broken-bat double down the first-base line to score three runs.— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) July 16, 2021
Exit velo: 64.9 mph.
Expected batted average: .070. pic.twitter.com/rHgeBePdeN
He also chipped in an RBI single in the third, with Ronald Torreyes’ RBI single finishing off the scoring for the Phillies.
After Moore was lifted, Archie Bradley and Ranger Suarez capably finished it off. This left the Phillies feeling good, but those good feelings didn’t last long into game two. Didi Gregorius committed an error on the first play, and Starling Marte’s home run gave the Marlins a 2-0 lead two batters into the game.
It was not the finest start for Zach Eflin, but as is so often the case, he was hurt by an inability by the bullpen to strand inherited runners. Enyel de los Santos was brought in with two runners on base in the fourth inning, and both promptly scored when Jesus Aguilar greeted him with a home run.
That was more than enough offense for the Marlins, because the Phillies lineup spent most of the nightcap not getting base hits. Sure, the game was shortened due to doubleheader rules, but two hits in seven innings is still pathetic. The Marlins even committed two fielding errors, but the Phillies didn’t come close to taking advantage of them.
The teams will face off twice more this weekend. Hopefully in those games, the Phillies can show a little more of their game one form, and a little less of their game two form.