The Phillies managed to scrape together just four hits against lefty Jeff Locke, losing 6-2 to the Pirates who completed their sweep of the Phillies.
Losing Ways Continue
The Phillies have now lost 9 of 10 and are 3-12 since winning five in a row. The Phillies have dropped to an NL-worst 14 games under .500, sit just one game ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks to remain above the last place spot in the National League, and are 12 games out of first place.
A lot of the blame must be placed on the offense. After seven solid innings from A.J. Burnett, striking out seven, allowing just three earned, the Phillies could not find any punch at the plate. The Phillies scored early when Marlon Byrd plated Jimmy Rollins via a single. Rollins had reached base due to a throwing error by Pedro Alvarez. The Pirates would fight back and score two of their own in the bottom half of the first. The Pirates would tack on a third run in the third on a Neil Walker sacrifice fly. Byrd would tighten the game in the seventh with a solo homer, his 18th of the year, before the Pirates would add three insurance runs in the eighth following a Cody Asche error at third.
With very few tradeable assets, Byrd has rapidly increased his trade value over the last few games, seemingly the only bat that has been alive. Chase Utley and Ryan Howard received the day off for today’s game. All-Star selections will be announced this evening and it is likely Utley will be announced as a starter in a rare bit of good news for the Phillies.