Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Phillies Overpowered By Mets’ Onslaught

GAME RECAP: Mets Crush Phillies 16-7

No deficit is too large for the new-look Mets to overcome. No offensive benchmarks are too ostentatious. David Wright homered in his first game since April and wound up being a footnote in the Mets' 16-7 win over the Phillies on Monday, which featured a franchise record eight home runs and 15 extra-base hits at Citizens Bank Park. Wright, who had not played since April 14 due to a career-threatening spinal condition, homered off Adam Morgan on his first swing back from the disabled list. That sparked a torrent of offense from a Mets team that has scored in clumps throughout its three-city road trip, using two Wilmer Flores homers and a half-dozen others to pick up Jacob deGrom after his worst start of the season. "It's incredible to be a part of," Wright said. "We just know that we're going to win the game. That's the type of confidence that you can't tell somebody to have, that you can't force upon somebody. You just have to get good at winning. And this team is getting good at winning." The Mets spared no Phillies pitcher, plating five of their runs off Morgan, four off Hector Nevis, another five off Justin De Fratus and two off Adam Loewen. It all made a distant memory of Philadelphia's early offensive outburst, which Ryan Howard and Domonic Brown highlighted with three-run homers off deGrom. "You should win most games like this," Phillies interim manager Pete Mackanin said. "Very disappointing, but I want to put it behind us. It's one game. It's a loss. You knock out a guy like deGrom, one of the best pitchers in the league … I'd just like to talk about that. I don't want to talk about the bad." Had Sean Gilmartin not delivered 3 1/3 shutout innings in relief of deGrom, the Mets may have been in a quandary despite all the offense. Instead, the Rule 5 pick's performance allowed them to coast through the middle innings without burning anyone else in their bullpen.

  • Howard hit a three-run homer to left in the first, Cameron Rupp crushed a solo homer into the visitors' bullpen in the second and Brown hit a three-run homer to right in the third to hand the Phillies a 7-2 lead. That should be enough to win most nights, but it was not nearly enough on this one. "It was crazy," Brown said of the 11 combined homers. "The ball was jumping for sure. It was hot, humid. Especially in this ballpark the ball is going to fly. A crazy night for sure. You're up 7-2 and lose a tough one."
  • Phillies pitchers had not suffered a nightmare like this since a 19-3 loss to the Orioles on June 16 in Baltimore, where they allowed eight home runs. Jeff Francoeur pitched the final two innings that night as the Phillies fell one homer short of tying the franchise record of nine homers allowed in a game, which happened against the Reds on Sept. 4, 1999. On Monday night, Morgan allowed four homers, Neris allowed two, De Fratus allowed one and Loewen allowed one. "It doesn't make me feel any better," said Morgan, asked about every other pitcher giving up home runs, including deGrom. "Seeing other guys do poorly shouldn't make anybody feel better."
  • One of the night's other bizarre moments occurred in the bottom of the first inning, when deGrom issued a five-pitch walk to Cesar Hernandez. He, Hernandez and home-plate umpire Tom Hallion all seemed to lose track of the count, shortly after Hallion ruled that Hernandez's dribbler down the first-base line was a foul ball off his foot. Replays indicated that the ball appeared to be fair, but the Mets could not challenge.
  • "The best thing to do is own up to it. It was embarrassing. It's not what we wanted to see, but put it behind us and move on." -- Mackanin, on the Phillies allowing eight home runs.
  • The 11 combined homers tied a National League single-game record, one shy of the big league record of 12.
  • The Phillies set a franchise record by allowing 15 extra-base hits, breaking the previous mark of 13 allowed on June 8, 2004, at the White Sox.

Phillies right-hander Jerome Williams believed he had turned a corner following his first three starts in August, in which he posted a 1.50 ERA. But then Williams allowed eight runs in just 1 2/3 innings Thursday against the Marlins to drop him to 4-9 with a 6.10 ERA. Noah Syndergaard will look to win his first career road game when the Mets resume their series with the Phillies at 7:05 p.m. ET Tuesday at Citizens Bank Park. Syndergaard is 7-1 with a 1.82 ERA at Citi Field this season, but 0-5 with a 5.05 ERA on the road.


Not Adding Up – The Phillies accomplished something pretty remarkable in the past 18 days. They scored seven runs in the first three innings against Dodgers ace Zack Greinke on Aug. 6. Greinke entered the game with a 1.41 ERA, nearly three-quarters of a run better than any pitcher in Major League Baseball. The Phillies then scored seven runs in 2 2/3 innings Monday night against Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom, who entered the night with a 1.98 ERA, which was second in baseball only to Greinke. But two dominant offensive performances against two of the best pitchers in baseball is not the remarkable part. The remarkable part is the Phillies lost both games. They lost to the Dodgers on Aug. 6, 10-8. They lost Monday night to the Mets, 16-7, as the Phillies and Mets tied a National League record with a combined 11 home runs. "It's tough," Phillies right-hander Justin De Fratus said. "We did that to Greinke. We did that to deGrom, two of the best pitchers in the National League, if not all of baseball." De Fratus exhaled before he continued his thought. "Everybody knows you've got to shut it down," he said. "We know we've got to put zeros up there, especially when we're putting up so many runs against such quality pitchers. We had them by the throat and just couldn't keep the ball in the yard. That's the biggest thing right there. Like I said, the same thing happened with Greinke. It's definitely frustrating for all of us. It's just been a frustrating year on all accounts." Phillies interim manager Pete Mackanin had little to say about the pitching other than the obvious. "The pitchers who pitched tonight are more disappointed than anybody," Mackanin said. "They feel terrible. It had to break some kind of record." Phillies left-hander Adam Morgan had the best start of his career last week against the high-powered Blue Jays, but the Mets knocked him out after just 3 2/3 innings. He allowed five runs and four home runs. Hector Neris allowed four runs and two home runs in 1 1/3 innings. De Fratus allowed five runs and one home run in two innings. Adam Loewen allowed two runs and one home run in two innings. It wasted a great offensive performance from the Phillies. Ryan Howard ripped a three-run home run to left field in the first inning. Cameron Rupp crushed a solo home into the visitors' bullpen in center field in the second. Domonic Brown hit a three-run home run over the right-field wall in the third. The three homers handed the Phillies a 7-2 lead and shortly thereafter they knocked deGrom from the game in the shortest and worst start of his career. But the Mets began their assault in the fourth with a pair of homers. "It doesn't make me feel any better," said Morgan, when asked about every other pitcher giving up home runs, including deGrom. "Seeing other guys do poorly shouldn't make anybody feel better."

The Phillies have returned to their lackluster ways and regained their grip on last place in the NL East with a record of 50-75. Given the departures, aging stars, injuries, and bipolar performances this season, this could still end up being the worst team in franchise history… at least that is something to hope for this year! All time, the Phillies are 52-63-0 on this day.

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