Gabe Kapler remains optimistic despite recent offensive struggles

Gabe Kapler and the Phillies dropped their fourth straight
Gabe Kapler isn't concerned about the lack of offense from the Phillies as of late, highlighted again in Tuesday's 2-1 loss in Miami to Marlins.

What once was a potent offense has fallen silent, averaging just three runs over the last eight games. The bats also spoiled an outstanding effort from Zach Eflin who was perfect through six innings before surrendering a two-out solo shot to Justin Bour.

"It is frustrating, but we also understand this is baseball," Kapler told reporters afterward (see video). "Just like a hitter goes through rough stretches and pitchers go through rough stretches, teams go through rough stretches. And really, how we handle adversity is going to define us as a team. I believe strongly in this club's ability to handle adversity."

Handling adversity is a requirement for any good team, but so is beating the teams you're supposed to beat and for the Phillies, the Marlins fall into that category.

The club now sits 5-11 against divisional opponents this season.



Eflin was the star Tuesday, sitting down the first 15 batters he faced in his season debut before Miguel Rojas dropped a double in between Cesar Hernandez and Aaron Altherr near the right-field line.

The Phillies had plenty of chances to put runs on the board but failed to capitalize, leaving 11 men on base and finishing 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position.

According to Kapler, at this point at least, it's not a matter of execution but rather luck.

"We hit some balls on the screws, a lot of ball on the screws," Kapler said. "Surprisingly with nothing to show for it. A lot of line drives and fly balls."

Injury Update
Scott Kingery was hit by a 98-mph fastball in the ninth inning and came out of the game in the 10th. The pitch appeared to hit just above the elbow near the funny bone area. Kapler said afterward it was a simple contusion and he shouldn't miss any time.

Tonight's Matchup
Aaron Nola tries to halt the Phillies' skid at four while the Marlins counter with lefty Jose Urena.

Starting Lineup
1. Cesar Hernandez 4
2. Rhys Hoskins 7
3. Odubel Herrera 8
4. Aaron Altherr 9
5. Carlos Santana 3
6. Maikel Franco 5
7. Pedro Florimon 6
8. Jorge Alfaro 2
9. Aaron Nola 1
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Follow Patrick on Twitter: @PGordonPBR

BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

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