Posted May 10, 2012 on
AP on Fox
The Philadelphia Phillies haven't been under .500 this late in the season since 2007, when they went on to win their first of five consecutive NL East titles.
Though there's plenty of time to recover, the Phillies still are concerned with their uninspired play to begin 2012.
After being swept for the first time this season, Philadelphia looks to bounce back when its hosts the opener of a three-game set against the San Diego Padres on Friday night.
The Phillies' bullpen struggled in a 10-6 loss to New York on Wednesday, allowing eight runs over the final three innings. The team's relievers have the worst ERA in the majors at 5.47.
Philadelphia (14-18) was outscored 22-12 during the three-game sweep.
"We have to wake up and play better," manager Charlie Manuel said. "We don't like what we've been doing. If we want to win, and be able to go where we want to go, we better start playing better."
Philadelphia has left 36 men on base over its last four games.
"Things that we do need to change," Manuel said. "We have to execute better."
The Phillies have played without injured stars Ryan Howard and Chase Utley to this point, and the rest of the lineup has done little to help make up for their absences.
Jimmy Rollins is hitting .230 with five extra-base hits in 126 at-bats.
"There definitely needs to be a change in intensity," Rollins said. "That comes with relaxing. When you win, everybody relaxes."
Vance Worley (2-2, 2.84 ERA) will attempt to help lighten the mood with another solid performance against San Diego.
Worley, though, is coming off his worst outing of the season after allowing five runs and 11 hits in six innings of a 7-1 loss to Washington on Saturday.
The right-hander was much better when he pitched seven stellar innings while striking out a career-high 11 in a 2-0 win over the Padres on April 19.
It marked the opener of a four-game set the teams split. Before winning the final two games of the series, San Diego had lost 12 of the previous 13 meetings.
The Padres (11-21) fell 6-2 at home to Colorado on Wednesday after winning the first two games of the series. Their .220 batting average ranks last in the NL, and they've scored two runs or less 15 times.
The lack of offense hasn't done much to help the pitching staff, including Friday's starter Clayton Richard (1-4, 4.89), who will look to end a four-start losing streak.
Richard had a decent performance in his last outing, giving up three runs and striking out a season-high seven in seven innings of a 4-1 loss to Miami on Saturday.
"Well pitched by Clayton. He probably deserved better," manager Bud Black told the team's official website.
The left-hander has received only two runs of support in 20 1-3 innings in his last three starts, and it may not get any better if his history against the Phillies comes into play.
Richard has lost both of his career starts versus Philadelphia despite a 2.40 ERA, receiving no run support in 15 innings.
The Phillies have won seven of the last 10 meetings at Citizens Bank Park.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Diekman heads to the bigs for the first time. (PhoulBallz)As expected, the Phillies have made a bevy of roster moves today. The news was actually broken by Iron Pigs relief pitcher Michael Schwimer yesterday on Twitter.Righty Brian Sanches was sent down to Triple-A, righty Justin De Fratus was moved to the 60-day DL as he continues to recover from elbow trouble, and Laynce Nix...
The Phillies’ hottest two prospects this year are likely names that most fans have not heard of. Recently, PhilliesNation.com readers have seen my features on right-handed pitcher Tyler Cloyd and first baseman Darin Ruf. With both men having such tremendous success thus far in 2012, I thought it was worthwhile to review their output and bring to you their interview excerpts...
Mayberry and Ruiz were a 1-2 punch on Friday. (AP)The Phillies opened up their series with the worst team in the National League and calmly dispatched them with a solid all-around showing, winning game one of the series, 7-3.WORLEY NOT BAD -The line: 6 innings, 6 hits, 3 runs (all earned), 2 walks, 9 strikeouts (93 pitches/58 strikes). Overall a very good outing.-His trouble spot...
Michael Schwimer was the first to go, and now he appears to be breaking the news on what amounts to a full line change for the Phillies' bullpen. On Thursday, after Triple-A Lehigh Valley was finished with a matinee game while the Phillies enjoyed a day off, Schwimer tweeted a congratulations to left-handed relievers Jake Diekman and Raul Valdes, whom he said were headed to...
Joe Blanton of the Philadelphia Phillies slots in behind the aces. How do the Braves compare at the bottom of their rotation? The Apocalyptic Horsemen Stats are in my recent coverage linked below.
TAL'S HANDY STATS
I am alternating a game-day 2012 ERA For The NL East and a 2012 ERA For The MLB 5. See link section below. In each publication, the number...
PRESS THE PLAY BUTTON TO LISTEN! IT'S ONLY TEN MINUTES!
The reign of T- Money continues and again I want to thank you for taking your precious time to listen to my thoughts. I have made the show more accessible to you by limiting the podcast to ten minutes or less. If you like what you hear the only thing I ask is for you to continue to spread the word to your friends...
Carlos Ruiz went 3-for-3 with a homer and three RBIs and John Mayberry Jr. homered and drove in three runs to lead the Philadelphia Phillies to a 7-3 win over the San Diego Padres on Friday night.
Vance Worley (3-2) allowed three runs on six hits, striking out nine, in six innings to help the Phillies snap a three-game losing streak.
Placido Polanco had a pair of doubles for Philadelphia...
Jayson Werth said that Phillies’ fans yelled and booed him as he got carted off the field last week after breaking his wrist against the Phillies last week.
“After walking off the field feeling nauseous knowing my wrist was broke and hearing Philly fans yelling ‘You deserve it,’ and, ‘That’s what you get,’ I am motivated to get back quickly and see to it personally...
The Philly Phace Off is Philly Sports World’s new weekly Thursday feature. Every Thursday, Rob and Wayne will debate a topic. Your job is to be the jury. You read both sides and then decide who wins by voting in the Phace Off Poll. In honor of Cole Hamels and the Bryce Harper fiasco, PSW’s Rob Iacuzio and Wayne Cella debate who the most intimidating Phillies’ pitcher of all...
Here are the awesome Phillie fans welcoming Jonathan Papelbon back to the dugout after an awesome (not really) performance.
PHILADELPHIA -- Ike Davis hit a three-run homer and the New York Mets scored eight runs off Philadelphia's bullpen in a 10-6 victory that completed a three-game sweep over the slumping Phillies on Wednesday night. Andres Torres also hit a homer, and the Mets rallied for the third straight game to improve to 18-13. The loss spoiled the return of Cliff Lee for the Phillies...
Pitching Matchups:Friday 7:05- Clayton Richard (4.89/1.37) vs. Vance Worley (2.84/1.34)Saturday 7:05- Joe Wieland (4.55/1.27) vs. Roy Halladay (3.28/1.07)Sunday 1:35- Edinson Volquez (2.98/1.23) vs. Cole Hamels (2.45/1.02)Friars Offense:Runs - 102 (29th)AVG - .220 (29th)OPS - .635 (28th)Their bats are lifeless, but I'm sure they're enough to overcome the Phils craptastic...
TGR wanted to do a quick look into the minors and check up on some of the up and coming MLBers. With Cliff Lee back for the Phillies, Michael Schwimer heads back to the minors. Click HERE to read more. In 5 games (6.1 IP) Schwimer was 0-1 with a 8.53 ERA, striking out 3 and walking 5. We have not seen the last of him this season.
While Schwimer was flirting the the majors,...