Oh, what a bullpen. Jake Diekman and Zach Miner allowed five runs in the seventh inning to blow Cliff Lee's lead in an 8-5 Phillies loss. The Nationals have outscored the Phillies 17-7 in two wins this weekend.
Nobody in this 'pen has stepped up to make the organization feel good about its relief crew heading into 2014. Diekman has the best stuff of the bunch but no consistency throwing strikes. The bullpen's ERA soared to 4.30, last in the NL. Its 1.47 WHIP is also last in the NL.
Jayson Werth did the most damage for Washington. He singled in the Nationals' first run and homered to break a 4-4 tie in the seventh. The NL Player of the Month for July went 3-for-5 with three runs and three RBI. He's hitting .322/.397/.527 on the season.
Lee wasn't exactly sharp. He allowed nine baserunners over six innings and exited after 97 pitches in his second start back from a stiff neck.
The bright spots were homers by Darin Ruf (6) and Domonic Brown (26). Brown is one homer behind Paul Goldschmidt and Pedro Alvarez for the National League lead.
The series concludes Sunday evening at 5 p.m. when Kyle Kendrick takes on Stephen Strasburg.