- Updated: June 29, 2014
For the first time since 1964, the Phillies have been swept in a four game series by the Atlanta Braves in Philadelphia. That last occurred when the team still called Connie Mack Stadium home.
Following a great road trip, and a series split with the Miami Marlins, the Phillies fell flat against the Braves this weekend. They had the lead in only one game, which was yesterday’s game one. The doubleheader saw both games remain close until one bad inning did the Phils in.
Similar to Friday night, the Phillies fell behind early and never recovered. One would not necessarily consider a 2-0 lead insurmountable, but that’s what happened today.
Tommy La Stella walked with one out, and two batters later he was joined on the base-paths by pitcher Aaron Harang. They both would score on a triple by B.J. Upton for the 2-0 lead.
Marlon Byrd hit the first of two home runs today in the bottom of the inning to cut the lead to 2-1. The Braves got that run back in the top of the fourth, when La Stella led off with a double. He would score on a single by Gerald Laird to make it 3-1. Byrd hit his second home run in the bottom of that inning to make it 3-2.
La Stella wore out the Phillies this weekend, finishing the series with five runs batted in and three runs scored. The Phils outhit the Braves 13-7 today, leaving 10 men on base. For the second straight game they failed to record a hit with runners in scoring position, going 0-7.
David Buchanan had an up and down day, lasting just five innings. He walked five, and allowed all three runs on five hits. His record fell to 4-4, and is earned run average is now 4.86. The bullpen was back today, allowing no runs on two hits and five strikeouts in four innings. They kept it manageable, but the offense could not produce runs.
Having been swept by the Braves, the Phillies are now eight games out of first place and sit dead last in the division. While they are still within striking distance, they continue to slip further out. The Phillies have struggled mightily at home in 2014. They’re now 18-27 at Citizens Bank Park, and went 2-8 on this home stand.
The Phils are off tomorrow before beginning a 10 game road trip on Tuesday. They’ll face the Marlins again, as well as the Pirates and Brewers.
One has to wonder how long they can remain in the race with consistent poor play like we’ve seen this weekend. It’s only a matter of time.
Stats Courtesy of Phillies.com
Photo Courtesy of MSN.Foxsports.com