Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/21/12
NEW YORK -- As they have kept alive their slim playoff hopes, the Philadelphia Phillies have refused to quit. New York Mets manager Terry Collins refused to answer when asked if he thought his team had done just that after another thumping, telling reporters they had to "ask them." The Mets' march of misery continued at Citi Field on Thursday night, quickly hitting a new low against the resurgent Phillies, who finished off a three-game sweep with a 16-1 rout. The Phillies pounded Mets starter Jeremy Hefner with six consecutive hits during an eight-run, nine-hit first inning. They bookended that with a seven-run ninth inning, including a grand slam by Ryan Howard off Josh Edgin, the rookie reliever Howard tagged for the game-winning homer in the ninth Wednesday. Juan Pierre tied a career high with five hits and he, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley each had two hits in the first, with each player driving in two runs in the inning. Utley produced four hits overall. The rout gave the Phillies a three-game sweep and kept them four games back of the St. Louis Cardinals for the second National League wild-card spot. "It's one of those things you just really can't explain," said Pierre, who legged out his last hit on an infield dribbler in the ninth. "These young guys will probably play the rest of their career and never see anything like that again." The loss kept the Mets searching for answers, or at least an end to a season that has turned increasingly grim in the second half. It was their ninth straight loss at Citi Field, where they are just 4-24 since the All-Star break. Asked after the game if he were embarrassed, Collins said only, "I am." Asked if he thought his team quit, he responded, "You have to ask them." Pressed for his opinion, Collins again said to ask his players, before adding, "I have my own opinion. And I'm not going to express it publicly." Collins later said he found some things from his team "unacceptable" after they fell behind 8-0 in the first. "People paid money to see us tonight," he said of the sparse makeup-game crowd that appeared to be less than 1,000 for first pitch. "Not that we wouldn't have lost 16-1. But not the way we lost. "Again, it's all about perception. The perception is, tonight after we're down 8-0, the game is over." Collins pointed to Pierre's hustling play at the end of a "meaningless game" and said he wanted to see his players play like that. Several Mets said they were embarrassed by the game, including Hefner (2-7), who said it was painful to watch his team for a full nine innings after getting taken out seven batters into the game. While saying "everybody in here is embarrassed," third baseman David Wright said he didn't "feel like we quit. I just feel like we're playing poorly, and the record indicates that." The Phillies, who pounded out 21 hits, were limited to one run by seven Mets relievers from the second through the eighth inning, but they finished the game with another barrage in the ninth. It was punctuated by Howard's slam to left off Edgin. The lefty was scheduled to end his season with this appearance, Collins said before the game, because he pitched in 25 more games this season than last. Phillies starter Tyler Cloyd (2-1) allowed only one run in eight innings, on a fifth-inning homer by Mike Baxter. The rookie gave up three hits and two walks while striking out six in the longest of his five career starts. The Mets scored three or fewer runs at home for the 16th straight game. Philadelphia assaulted Hefner, and he left after walking the seventh batter during the brutal top of the first inning that lasted 33 minutes. The Phillies' first five batters scored, and their first eight batters reached base. The horror reel only paused for the Mets when reliever Collin McHugh induced a home-to-first double play on a comebacker from Cloyd. But Rollins followed with his second hit of the inning, a two-run single that made it 7-0, and the Phillies added two more hits, with Utley's second RBI single of the inning making it 8-0. "It seemed like everything we hit was starting to fall," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "Things were going our way." Hefner became the first Met since John Maine in May 2010 to start a game and exit without recording an out. He was charged with seven runs. Baxter's homer made it 8-1. NOTES: Mets right-hander R.A. Dickey's scheduled start for Sunday was switched to Saturday, so he could get one more home start before the end of the season, manager Terry Collins said. The 18-game winner will now also start next Thursday's home finale against the Pittsburgh Pirates, giving him a shot to reach the 20-win milestone at Citi Field. Dickey will have one final road start before the end of the year. ... New York closer Frank Francisco was unavailable for the second straight game due to tendinitis in his right elbow, Collins said. ... Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz sat out as part of the continuing plan to let him heal from a left foot injury.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Report: Giants will be ‘aggressive’ in trying to sign Jason Pierre-Paul

Report: Porzingis avoided ligament damage in ankle

Brooks Koepka meltdown includes whiff, stomping head off driver

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker