Some said that with this pitching staff, it would never happen. And yet, here it is…a losing streak of three games. Those who called it impossible must have severely overestimated the Phillies offense.
Because this offense has been horrific. Pathetic, anemic and just plain awful are a few other descriptive terms you may choose. On Monday night, the Phillies faced a pitcher with an ERA over 7.0 and they still only managed one lousy run. They lost to the Cardinals 3-1.
There were a total of four Phillies hits in the game and one of those came from the pitcher, Cliff Lee. Yes, Lee out hit everyone, except Jimmy Rollins and Ben Francisco who had the other three hits.
On the mound, Lee was a bit off and high in the strike zone. He walked a career-high six batters, although at least two of those were on badly missed calls from the umpire. Still, through 6.1 innings, Lee allowed three runs and kept the team in the game. The problem was, no one else looked like they wanted to be in the game.
The hitters were impatient at the plate with a home plate ump who was obviously squeezing the pitchers. All three walks issued by the Cardinals were to Ryan Howard. With the way the strike zone was, they should have had at least three or four more free passes.
Personally, I think the starting pitchers need to get together and start screaming at the offense. Chase Utley missing is not an excuse. They have hit without him before and are capable of doing it again. One man does not make a team.
Roy Oswalt will pitch tonight, despite his back issues, which makes me nervous. Because if the Phillies continue to fail to score runs, Oswalt will have no room for error. They could lose their fourth straight game and second straight series. Game time is 8:15pm.
Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography