The Philadelphia Phillies started their last series at the “Ted” – the Atlanta Braves are moving out to the ‘burbs where supposedly their fan base is, and the traffic is better – sending out RHP Jerad Eickhoff (11-14, 3.75 ERA against Julio Teheran (6-10, 3.10).
It was the rain, the bullpens, and yet another injury to Roman Quinn, that would be tonight’s story as the Braves overtook the Phillies 7-6.
A 31 minute rain delay to start the game may have hurt Teheran as after a K of Cesar Hernandez, Quinn and Odubel Herrera reached on singles, Roman legging out an IF dribbler to 2nd. Maikel Franco then worked a six pitch walk after going 0- 2 which set the stage for Ryan Howard to do what he has done better than anyone else against the Braves, hit HR’s (see below) for his 24th of the season, in Grand Slam style, on the 1st pitch he saw.
After an easy 1-2-3 SDI for Eickhoff, Roman Quinn showed off his best weapon once again, doubling to LF, and then easily stealing 3rd, and scoring on throwing error by Tyler Flowers. They added another on a Cameron Rupp RBI double to increase the lead to 6-0 after 2.
No Phillies fan was breathing easy yet after the Mets series mid and late game meltdowns.
In the 4th, the red hot Freddie Freeman (33) broke up the shut out on an 0-2 slider that didn’t, with two outs. But that was all Jerad gave up, before they cued up the Eurythmics and the rain came again for a 1 hour 53 minute delay this time, which knocked out both starters.
No sooner than you could whistle Dixie – or more appropriately a Rainy Night in Georgia – four different Phillies relievers gave up at least one run each, two of them giving up two. It also did not help that Quinn was removed from the game with an apparent oblique injury and Darin Ruf was installed in LF,which may have led to the 8th inning rally by the Braves. At the same time the Braves pen shut the Phillies down, leading to the ultimate blow, an Emilio Bonifacio game winning single with two out in the 8th, that gave Atlanta the eventual 7-6 tally.
Mauricio Cabrera (4-1, 2.84) would be your winner , while David Hernandez (3-4, 3.84) would earn a BS and the L. Jim Johnson came on for his 18th S.
Howard Hilites: Ryans GS in the 1st inning was the 15th of his career. Howard is the best HR hitter against Atlanta, 52, and Turner field has also been his favorite away HR park with 22. He also has 154 RBIs in 182 career games against them. He would go 2/3 on the night with a walk. That HR also was his 381st now tying him for 69th all time w/ Albert Belle. Next on the list are Frank Howard and HOF’er Jim Rice at 382. Four more players could possibly be reached with 63rd being Aramis Ramirez at 386.
Shut out Shut Out: The Phillies had given up 25 unanswered runs before scoring in the 1st – last longest before that was 30 – 1918. They would then start another streak after the 2nd inning.
No Relief: The Phillies pen has an 8.03 ERA in September (69 earned runs in 77 1/3 innings).
Next Ups: LHP Adam Morgan (2-10, 5.57) RHP Mike Foltynewicz (5-5, 4.41) also at the annoying 7:10 PM . Eric Christensen will be here for his last game of the season, and I will be back Thursday for mine.