Thursday, May 12, 2016

Phillies Dominated By Recent Call Up

GAME RECAP: Braves Beat Phillies 5-1

Although he might not have ended what was an odd and hectic day in perfect fashion, Williams Perez took full advantage of a surprise start and benefited from Freddie Freeman's three-hit game as the Braves snapped an 11-game home losing streak with Wednesday night's 5-1 win over the Phillies. Perez, who was perfect until Ryan Howard began the fifth inning with a home run, ended up limiting the Phillies to two hits over eight innings. Not bad, considering he began the day in Rochester, N.Y., and traveled to Atlanta once he learned he'd been recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to make this start in place of Jhoulys Chacin, who was traded to the Angels on Wednesday afternoon. "He pitched a hell of a game," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said of Perez. "He made a mistake to Howard, but he didn't give us a lot to hit." Freeman began his three-hit game by notching one of the three first-inning singles surrendered by Jerad Eickhoff. The red-hot first baseman chased Eickhoff with a one-out homer in the fifth inning. His contributions enabled the Braves to win for just the second time in 18 tries at Turner Field this year. "I think we finally played a solid game in all three facets," Freeman said. "I think it's probably the first time we've played good defense and pitched well. It's definitely a nice thing tonight to score a run in [each of the first three innings] to give some cushion to Williams, and he definitely took off with that."

  • Nick Markakis made Eickhoff pitch from the stretch after throwing just one pitch by hitting a single. The Braves made contact early and often as Eickhoff threw 27 pitches in the first. Overall, Braves lefties were 7-for-15 against the righty. 
  • Howard's fifth-inning homer ended Perez's perfect-game bid and increased his lead for the most homers hit by an opponent at Turner Field. He's hit 22, and David Wright ranks second with 19.
Vince Velasquez will look to earn his fifth win when he gets the ball for the Phillies during Thursday's series finale, which will begin at 7:10 p.m. ET.


Eickhoff Struggles Through Start – Pitching against lefties has been a challenge for Phillies right-hander Jerad Eickhoff, and it showed Wednesday night in the Phillies' 5-1 loss to the Braves. Atlanta loaded its lineup with lefties, who went a collective 7-for-15 against Eickhoff, who lasted 4 1/3 innings. "They've got a ton of left-handers in there, and they're all good hitters," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. Eickhoff found himself pitching from the stretch after Nick Markakis lined a single to center on his first pitch of the game. "First pitch of the game, try to go away, I got a little middle there, and I think that's kind of the storyline for the night," Eickhoff said after the game. "I executed a good pitch, but I think I followed up with a pitch that maybe caught too much of the plate. I wasn't continuously hitting those corners." Eickhoff ended up throwing 27 pitches in the first inning, but he limited the damage to just one run in the frame. He continued to struggle with his command, though, and the Braves pounced on his mistakes. Eickhoff yielded four runs -- three earned -- on seven hits with two strikeouts and a walk. Freddie Freeman chased him with a home run to right-center in the bottom of the fifth. "I think it just boils down to the command of his fastball," Mackanin said. "His off stuff, he didn't have it either. He battled through his last outing, and he looked a little bit the same. He didn't look like he was in full control because he wasn't spotting his fastball, and that makes all the difference in the world. Too many good pitches to hit."

Today In Phils History – Today is a day of records. It is the 40th birthday of Wes Helms who, most likely, holds the record (which has since been tied) of least expensive trade when the Phillies sold him to the Marlins for $1. 1987 saw Mike Schmidt set the franchise record for career runs scored (1,365). In 1995, the Phillies played the Astros in a game where not a single person paid for a ticket (the Astros gave away 54,350 tickets for the game). Ten years later, Bobby Abreu hit a homerun in his 5th straight game which tied the franchise record held by Dick Allen and Mike Schmidt. And, in 2009, Jayson Werth also tied a team record by stealing 4 bases in a game including second, third, and home in the same inning. Watching Werth from the dugout was Cole Hamels who made his debut 10 years ago today in 2006 (along with the long since forgotten Chris Roberson).

The Phillies are currently 19-15 this season putting them on pace to beat most preseason predictions. The Phillies finished the spring exceeding most expectations compiling a record of 15-11-3 (18-11-3 if you include the exhibition games against Reading and the University of Tampa). All time, the Phillies are 43-49-0 on this day. I expect the Phillies to finish in the bottom half of the division but not last in the NL East by finishing the season with a 77-85 record. Let the rebuild begin!

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