blogging Phillies baseball and the home of Phillies Talk Podcast by Rich Baxter
blogging Phillies baseball and the home of Phillies Talk Podcast by Rich Baxter

Nationals cool off early Phillies fire in this series

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Nick Pivetta ran into a buzzsaw of Nationals hitters last night, and it wasn’t too pretty

The Phillies had been sailing along since the home opener in the month of April so far. But last night the Washington Nationals put the Phillies fire out with a 15-1 drubbing that really seems to have set this team back on it’s heels a little. The Phils dropped 2 of 3 games to the Nationals at home in the series.

Pitching has been the source of the Phillies weakness so far in 2019 – the offense had been essentially working like a machine for the first 9 games, a well oiled machine that had produced a lot of Phillies wins and had propelled them into first place in the NL East.

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Anthony Rendon has always hit well in the Phillies home ballpark, and last night, he did it again. Phillies pitching was pounded for 17 H on the night from the Nationals. Matt Adams is only batting .143 but went 2-5 with 4 RBI on the night, Rendon added 3 RBI and Adam Eaton chipped in with 2 RBI – so those 3 players had the bulk of the Nats 15 runs they scored last night.

Pivetta gave up 7 H and 7 R all of which were earned. It was easily one of his worst games as a starter for this team. Last season, he gave up only 9 runs combined in all of his 5 starts of April 2018. He has already given up 14 ER in 3 starts this year so far in April.

A big April crowd of 30,805 paid admission to see this beating of the Phils, and they probably didn’t expect his outcome. Jeremy Hellickson, a former Phillies pitcher, brought his 9.00 ERA into last night’s game and pitched a gem of a game for his first win on the year. The loss brings the Phillies record down to 7-4. The Phillies home crowd coming into this game last night was second in total (309,210) only to the LA Dodgers (324,327) out of all of the MLB, as many Phillies fans have visited the ballpark this early season to see what all the excitement is about with Harper and the rest of this team.

Today is an off day for the Phillies, the team heads down to Miami for the weekend.

Here are the probable starting pitchers for the Marlins series:

Friday: RHP Jake Arrieta (1-1, 2.77 ERA) vs RHP Sandy Alcantara (1-0, 1.50 ERA)

Saturday: RHP Zach Eflin (2-0, 0.75 ERA) vs LHP Caleb Smith (0-1, 4.09 ERA)

Sunday:  RHP Vince Velasquez (0-0, 3.00 ERA) vs RHP Jose Urena (0-3, 9.22 ERA) 

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