- The sixth inning has been a problem this season for Eickhoff, who has a 12.32 ERA in the sixth compared to a combined 2.64 ERA in the first five innings. But after he allowed the two-run homer to Navarro and allowed a hit to to bring the tying run at the plate, he retired the next three batters to preserve the Phillies' two-run lead. "I tried to slow it down," Eickhoff said. "Freddy [Galvis] came out and said I was going a little quick, a little fast, so he was kind of instrumental in slowing me down and making me make pitches. I was happy to get out of that inning and bounce back."
- Hernandez, Joseph and Altherr continue to make cases for 2017. Hernandez hit a solo homer to left in the third and Joseph hit a solo shot to right in the sixth. Hernandez entered the game hitting .343 (72-for-210) with 15 extra-base hits, including three homers, 16 RBIs and a .413 on-base percentage over his previous 59 games. Joseph has hit 17 homers, giving Phillies' first basemen a Major League-leading 33 homers this season. Altherr added a pair of hits and two RBIs, as well. Mackanin said he has been impressed with each of them. "That's kind words from the guy that's at the helm of the club," Joseph said. "You get the opportunity, you just try to make the most of it. And that's what I'm trying to do and that's what everybody in here is trying to do."
- "We won, so I guess I made the right move. That's how it works, right?" - Mackanin, on removing Eickhoff, despite throwing just 71 pitches after six innings.
- Phillies first baseman made his first career appearance at U.S. Cellular Field and has now played in all 30 big league ballparks. He singled, giving him a hit in all 30, as well.
- The Phillies and Class A Lakewood announced a four-year extension to their player development contract. The BlueClaws will remain in the South Atlantic League through the 2020 season.
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Phillies Salvage Split In Chicago
GAME RECAP: Phillies Wrestle White Sox 5-2
threw just 71 pitches over six quality innings on Wednesday during the Phillies' 5-2 victory over the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. The White Sox three-game winning streak came to an end, as Eickhoff allowed two runs on four hits while striking out two and not issuing a walk. Eickhoff faced the minimum through five innings, having given up a leadoff single to in the fourth, which was erased on a double-play grounder. But after giving up two runs on three hits in the sixth, the Phillies went to their bullpen. "I wanted him out on a positive note," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said of Eickhoff. "He's been struggling in the sixth inning and after that, so I didn't want him going back out there. We have three guys I have confidence in [Edubray] Ramos, [Hector] Neris and [Jeanmar] Gomez. So it worked out for us." "Adam was the one that breaks it up and gets it going, but [Eickhoff] was tough on us," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "A great curveball. That's the biggest thing that sticks out. When he got in trouble, that curveball was the pitch for us. After that, it just wasn't a good night offensively. I don't think we swung it that well." suffered the loss, although he made his first average start of the month. The White Sox right-hander gave up four runs on seven hits over six innings, striking out six without a walk. Shields retired the first five Phillies he faced before consecutive hits from , and brought home two runs. and Joseph also went deep for the Phillies. The White Sox scored one in the ninth off of Gomez but stranded two runners when grounded out to second to end the contest.
The Phillies return to action Friday when they open a three-game series against the Mets at Citi Field at 7:10 p.m. ET. Phillies left-hander (1-7, 6.21 ERA) faces Mets right-hander (11-7, 3.36 ERA) in the series opener.
Stabilizing The Rotation – The Phillies opened the season with , , , and in their rotation. , , and have come and gone at different points, too, but only Eickhoff has the opportunity to make every scheduled start from the beginning of the season to the end. He continued that pursuit Wednesday night in a victory over the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. "That's my job," Eickhoff said. "I take pride in what I do and in that." Eickhoff allowed four hits and two runs and struck out two. Surprisingly, he left after throwing only 71 pitches in six innings. Eickhoff said Phillies manager Pete Mackanin and pitching coach Bob McClure told him they pulled him because they want him to finish the season healthy and make every start the rest of the way. "You can't complain about that," Eickhoff said. "I'm very lucky and very fortunate to be healthy this year." But Mackanin also said they removed Eickhoff from the game because "I wanted him out on a positive note. He's been struggling in the sixth inning and after that, so I didn't want him going back out there. We have three guys I have confidence in [Edubray] Ramos, [Hector] Neris and [Jeanmar] Gomez. So it worked out for us." The sixth inning has been a problem for Eickhoff, who has a 12.32 ERA in the sixth compared to a combined 2.64 ERA in the first five innings. Sure enough, he had pitched five scoreless innings when he allowed a two-run home run to in the sixth to cut the Phillies' lead to 4-2. White Sox second baseman then followed with a single to put the tying run at the plate. But Eickhoff retired the next three batters to end the inning: flied out to left, struck out swinging and flied out to center. "I tried to slow it down," Eickhoff said. "Freddy (Galvis) came out and said I was going a little quick, a little fast, so he was kind of instrumental in slowing me down and making me make pitches. I was happy to get out of that inning and bounce back." Eickhoff has thrown 155 2/3 innings this season. He threw a career-high 184 1/3 innings between the Minor Leagues and Phillies last year. He is not on an innings limit, so he should make the rest of his scheduled starts. "No, no, no," Mackanin said about an innings limit for Eickhoff. "I wanted him out on a positive note. We won, so I guess I made the right move. That's how it works, right?"
Veterans Clear Waivers – Do not expect to be anywhere but Philadelphia when the Phillies finish their season Oct. 2. is likely to be in a Phillies' uniform for the season finale, too. But ESPN.com reported Wednesday that both players have cleared waivers, which means the Phillies can trade them before the Aug. 31 deadline to make players eligible for postseason rosters. Both players could help contenders, but at the moment, it's unlikely either is dealt. "I guess you've got to see what presents itself," Howard said before Wednesday night's game against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. "You know me, the last 12 years I've just been focused on playing ball. If it presents itself, it presents itself. You handle that situation. Otherwise I just try to stay in the moment, stay in the now and prepare for the game." Howard has hit .324 (24-for-74) with four doubles, eight home runs, 18 RBIs and a 1.062 OPS since July 3. But it is believed the Phillies prefer to finish the season with their iconic first baseman, rather than flip him to a team for a minimal return -- if any teams express interest in him. ESPN.com reports a couple teams have some interest in Ruiz, but it is not believed to be an intense pursuit. Ruiz is hitting .261 (43-for-165) with six doubles, three home runs, 12 RBIs and a .719 OPS this season. He has a .368 on-base percentage. Ruiz has started four of the last six games, including as a designated hitter on Tuesday, but Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said that is just a coincidence and not the Phillies showcasing him for potential suitors. "Maybe it's possible," Ruiz said. "Maybe it's not. Depending on how everything goes, it's possible. So far, there's nothing. I don't know. I'm still happy here. It was something I was thinking early in the season to now. We'll see what happens." Both Howard and Ruiz have full no-trade rights, but Ruiz has indicated he would love to play in the postseason again. "That's definitely one of my goals, to come back to the postseason and have a chance to go to the World Series," Ruiz said. "I'd like to go and win this thing. It's going to be a tough decision you'll have to make. But baseball continues, life continues and I have to continue to work." Howard has a $25 million club option for 2017, but the Phillies are expected to take a $10 million buyout instead. Ruiz has a $4.5 million club option for 2017, but the Phillies are likely to take a $500,000 buyout.
Here To Stay – Jake Thompson's first four starts in the big leagues have not gone according to plan, but he will have more opportunities to turn things around this season. Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said Wednesday that Thompson will remain in the rotation. "At this point, yeah," Mackanin said. "In Triple-A, you can get away with more mistakes. You can't get away with mistakes here. You immediately find that out when you start making a few mistakes. They don't get popped up or grounded out. They get hit. What he's doing now is just trying to make perfect pitches and trying too hard. Keep the ball down. Keep it down. Everything is up in the zone. He didn't do that in Triple-A. When he did, he got away with it." Thompson is 1-3 with a 9.79 ERA in his first four starts. He is tied with for the second-highest ERA in franchise history for a pitcher that made four starts in his first four big league appearances. Only Mike Maddux fared worse. He posted a 9.98 ERA through his first four starts in 1986.
Today In Phils History – The Phillies lost to the Cubs by a score of 26-23 on this day in 1922 after having climbed out of a 25-6 defecite in the 4th inning despite not hitting a single homerun in the game. The Phillies honored Del Ennis on this day in 1955 for driving in more runs than any other player in team history (Ennis added 4 RBI during the double header sweep over St. Louis after the presentation). Jim Bunning (1984) and Curt Simmons (1993) were each inducted into the Philadelphia Baseball Hall of Fame (later know at the Wall of Fame) on this day. On the same day that pitcher Jeff Juden hit a homerun off Phenom Hideo Nomo in 1995, Gregg Jefferies also hit for the cycle. Roy Halladay moved to 0-13 on the year, all strikeouts with his second plate appearance of the game on this day in 2013 setting a NL and tying the MLB record for consecutive strikeouts. Finally, happy birthday to Doug Glanville who was born on this day in 1970.
The Phillies are currently 59-68 this season putting them on pace to beat most preseason predictions. All time, the Phillies are 52-63-0 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.