Did the Phillies win the first game of the doubleheader?
Unlikely stars. The Phillies picked up their first win of the second half on big contributions by Matt Moore, Travis Jankowski, and Ronald Torreyes. Moore struck out nine batters, Jankowski drove in four runs, and Torreyes made a diving stop to start a crucial double play. The Philadelphia InquirerZach Eflin pitches a dud in game 2, observations from Phillies’ doubleheader split with Marlins
The Marlins have placed right-hander Pablo Lopez on the 10-day injured list due to a right rotator cuff strain. The placement is retroactive to July 14. Right-hander John Curtiss has been reinstated from the 10-day IL to take Lopez’s spot on the active roster, while righty Jordan Holloway was optioned back to Triple-A after serving as the 27th man for yesterday’s doubleheader with the Phillies.
Lopez heads to the IL in the aftermath of a history-making achievement, as his last start on July 11 saw Lopez become the first MLB pitcher to ever strike out his first nine batters faced in a game. That entry into the record books has been the highlight of an overall strong season for the righty, who has a 3.03 ERA/3.48 SIERA over 101 innings for Miami and above-average strikeout (27.1%) and walk (6.1%) rates, to go along with a 47.3% grounder rate.
Lopez’s 2020 numbers were also good, and the 25-year-old is now looking like a nice building block within a Marlins pitching mix that has plenty of intriguing arms. As Man On Second’s Joe Frisaro notes, however, several of these pitchers are already nearing career highs in innings pitched, so particularly in the wake of the shortened 2020 season, it remains to be seen how the Marlins will manage their rotation innings the rest of the way.
In Lopez’s case, his previous career high was 145 1/3 IP in A-ball back in 2017, so this 10-day IL stint might act as something of a natural rest point that allows him to pitch regularly the rest of the season, assuming a relatively quick return. That said, Lopez has also had shoulder issues in the past, and the Marlins will undoubtedly carefully monitor his condition to prevent any further injury. Depending on the severity of his rotator cuff strain, it’s possible Lopez could be shut down entirely for the season, considering that Miami already seems to be looking ahead to 2022.
If the Marlins opted for a starter-by-committee or an opener/bulk pitcher approach to fill Lopez’s rotation spot, Curtiss might be in line for more “starts,” after receiving a few opener assignments with the Rays and Marlins over the last two years. Curtiss was placed on the 10-day IL due to neck stiffness back on July 4, and he has pitched well in his first season as a Marlin — a 2.67 ERA over 33 2/3 innings, despite some lackluster hard-hit ball numbers. Curtiss is controlled through the 2025 season, so the Marlins are probably less likely to move him before other relievers in potential deals prior to the July 30 trade deadline.
One more thing about the Braves!! If I may. I’d like your advice. I’m old enough to remember when Tom Brady played for Michigan, he led a comeback victory over my Crimson Tide in the Orange Bowl. Quarterbacks need confidence and reps. And when Brady played for Michigan, he kept getting pulled every other series for Drew Hensen. With that said, Kyle Wright, Bryce Wilson, Touki Toussaint, these guys come up and then get sent back down to AAA. It has to be on their mind that if they dont pitch well it’s back to the minors with ya. Don’t you guys think it’s time for the Braves to trade Charlie Morton to a contender, get something of value in return for him, and bring up Wright, Wilson, Toussaint and leave them in the majors so the Atlanta brass can see what they’ve got in these pitchers??
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17 July, 2021 - 09:53pm
Twenty minutes later, a heavy rainstorm sent the game into its second rain delay and the game was suspended until Sunday afternoon.
The Phillies and Marlins will resume the game in the 10th inning with the score tied at 2 at 1:05 p.m. before they play the series finale at Citizens Bank Park approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the suspended game.
Jon Berti will start the 10th inning for the Marlins with a runner on second base. Berti had a 1-1 count against Jose Alvarado when the game was suspended. The top of the order — Jean Segura, J.T. Realmuto, and Bryce Harper — are due up for the Phillies in the bottom of the 10th.
Suárez had been impressive since being moved into the closer’s role, but even he couldn’t escape the troubles the Phillies have faced this season in the ninth inning.
Starling Marte started the ninth by beating the shift with a grounder to the second-base hole and Jesus Aguilar followed with a homer. The Phillies lead the majors this season with 23 blown saves. Suárez is the third closer the Phillies have tried. Their ninth-inning troubles roll on.
Imagine if Vince Velasquez faced the Marlins every fifth day.
He shut out the Marlins for five innings and has now held them scoreless this season for 18 innings over three starts. Velasquez has a 0.00 ERA against the Marlins this season and a 6.52 ERA against the rest of the league.
The right-hander was impressive as he struck out four, walked two, and allowed just one hit. He would have pitched one more inning had the game not been delayed by rain just after Velasquez dropped a sacrifice bunt in the bottom of the fifth.
He wasn’t afraid to throw his fastball at the top of the zone and he used the elevated fastball for two of his four strikeouts. Velasquez mixed in an effective changeup and slider to keep the Marlins off balance.
Velasquez’ rotation spot seemed to be in question after he ended the first half by lasting less than three innings in a rough start at Fenway Park. He had allowed 13 runs in his previous 8⅓ innings before the Marlins arrived in town. That was just what he needed.
The Phillies scored twice in the first inning and then failed to tack on additional runs that would have provided Suarez with some protection. They ended three innings with runners on third base, went 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position through nine innings, and left seven men on base.
The last time Héctor Neris pitched in South Philly, he was blitzed for six runs and recorded just two outs. Nearly two weeks later, he looks like a different pitcher.
Neris logged two scoreless innings as he handled the sixth and seventh after Velasquez was lifted. Neris has not allowed an earned run in five straight appearances since his July 4 disaster against San Diego.
Phillies manager Joe Girardi said a few days after that meltdown that he would look for chances to rebuild Neris’ confidence. He seemed to do that on the team’s seven-game road trip before the All-Star break and he used him Friday night for six key outs. Neris recorded half of his outs on strikeouts and retired six of the seven batters he faced.
Across the state, the Mets placed Francisco Lindor on the injured list with an oblique injury and shut down Jacob deGrom with forearm tightness before they played in Pittsburgh. The Phillies already have baseball’s easiest schedule in the second half and catching the Mets could become a little easier if the division leaders are without their stars.
Two wins on Sunday would put the Phillies two games over .500 for the first time since May 18. The National League East was underwhelming in the first half, but the division race should get interesting in the second. The Braves have already made two trades and the Mets have been rumored this week to be after Kris Bryant of the Cubs. The Phillies, if they want to return to the playoffs for the first time since 2011, won’t be able to stand pat.
After Saturday’s game is completed, Zack Wheeler will make his first start of the second half in Sunday’s series finale. Wheeler leads the majors in innings, so the Phillies were pleased when he threw just three pitches in Tuesday’s All-Star Game. Pablo López was scheduled to pitch for the Marlins, but he was placed on the injured list on Saturday afternoon.
17 July, 2021 - 03:38pm
PHILADELPHIA - Connor Brogdon is back in the fold which means the Phillies have taken another step towards overcoming the situation in Boston that caused four players to be placed on the COVID-19 injured list.
Alec Bohm was placed on the injured list Sunday after being removed from last Saturday’s game following a positive COVID-19. Aaron Nola - who was scheduled to start Sunday’s game - and relievers Bailey Falter and Brogdon were placed on the list because of contact tracing.
Falter was activated Friday before a doubleheader with the Marlins that started the second half, while Brogdon re-joined the team Saturday. To make room for Brogdon, the Phillies sent pitcher Mauricio Llovera to Triple-A.
Matt Vierling, the 27th player for Friday’s double-header, was returned to Triple-A as well.
Nola is scheduled to start on Tuesday against the New York Yankees, while Bohm could return by the middle of the week as he needs to sit 10 days from his positive test.
The Phillies also sent pitcher Victor Santos to the Red Sox Saturday as the player to be named later to complete a trade for infielder C.J. Chatham on January 8. The 26-year-old Chatham, a former second-round pick is currently on the injured list in Triple-A Lehigh Valley where he is hitting .269 with 10 RBIs in 20 games.
The 21-year-old Santos was 3-2 with a 2.20 ERA for Single-A Jersey Shore and Double-A Reading this season.
The Phillies begin play on Saturday three games behind the New York Mets in the National League East.
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