The Phillies received a surplus of arms before the game and needed nearly all of them in a 15-9 lashing by the Dodgers Tuesday night. It was one of their worst-pitched games of the season and exposed their lack of capable lefty arms.
To their credit, the Phils fought to the finish, and the night wasn't without some terrific highlights (two homers and 4 RBIs by Ross Gload, Domonic Brown's first Major League homer, 4 RBIs), but in the words of our Beerleaguer brethren, it felt like a loss before the Phillies even got started. The Dodgers' lefty heavy lineup smoked Kyle Kendrick for five runs in 3 1-3 innings and it continued to get worse from there. Antonio Bastardo fell behind on the lefty batters he exists to face and allowed three-straight RBI hits. David Herndon sailed through fifth only to fall apart in his second inning of work, allowing four runs on a walk and three hits, one of them a home run. Opponents are hitting .342 off Herndon this season as the Phils continue to test the limits in an effort to get their Rule 5 pick to the October finish line. Danys Baez followed with another miserable, small-time outing (2 ER, 3 H, 1 BB). This is Baez's first season pitching in an environment where winning actually matters. So far it looks like he's better suited for places like Baltimore and Cleveland.
But the biggest headache these days stems from the continued struggle of top lefty J.C. Romero, who hit a batter, surrendered a two-run homer and walked pitcher George Sherrill, who was making his first Major League at bat. After the game, Romero told CSNPhilly's Jim Salisbury that his elbow may be breaking down again. “Trust me, if I had known this was going to happen, I wouldn’t have had the surgery,” Romero told Salisbury. “I never saw this coming. My arm is going fast and my hand is going slow. When I hang a pitch, they bang it."