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Northern blights: Blue Jays 8, Phillies 2

Another night in Canada, another loss for the Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies v Toronto Blue Jays
Zack Wheeler probably can’t wait to return to the good old US of A
Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images

Let’s keep things in perspective: Wednesday night’s game wasn’t the worst thing to ever happen to the Phillies in Toronto. And even though they’re now on a four-game losing streak, the Phillies aren’t even having the worst week of any of the city’s sports teams (What are you doing, Chuck Fletcher?) However, Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays was pretty bad nonetheless. Zack Wheeler got knocked around, the offense was limited to two hits, and they fell to the Blue Jays 8-2.

Having Wheeler on the mound seems like a good starting point if you want to snap a three-game losing streak, but apparently Wheeler only pitches well in the United States. (This isn’t actually true, as he pitched well in his one previous start at Rogers Center, but whatever.) Thanks in part to some poor defense by Didi Gregorius, he allowed a run in the third. In the fifth, he did something he hasn’t done much of since becoming a Phillie: Give up home runs.

Those were just the sixth and seventh homers Wheeler has surrendered all season and that’s a pretty good sign that things weren’t going the Phillies’ way.

The Phillies’ offense didn’t do much in the way of answering back. They mustered a whopping two hits on the night against Ross Stripling and a couple of relievers. If there was one positive from the game, it’s that one of those hits was a home run by Bryson Stott who seems to have discovered his offensive footing.

One thing that might help the Phillies is if they remembered how to take a walk. During this four-game losing streak, they have a grand total of one walk, and that came on Sunday. (In case you were curious, the last Phillie to draw a walk in Canada was Cesar Hernandez on August 26, 2018.) As much fun as it has been to watch Nick Castellanos swing at just about every pitch no matter where it is located, a little more selectivity might do him and his teammates some good.

On an interesting note, the game featured the debut of Bubby Rossman who became the first player named Bubby in MLB history. (Unfortunately, it wasn’t a good debut, as he gave up a two-run homer to Teoscar Hernandez in his one inning of work.)

The good news is, the Phillies will return to the United States, and rejoin their teammates who didn’t make the trip because they bravely stood up to the oppressive Canadian government. They’ll have an off day on Thursday to recover and then close out the first half with a series in Miami. I’m sure things will turn around soon, because as recent history has shown us, nothing gets the Phillies going right like a trip to Miami.