Phillies drop series opener to Marlins in extras

Gabe Kapler takes blame for loss
The Phillies dropped the series opener last night to the Marlins despite Aaron Nola piecing together his best start of the season in a 3-1 extra-inning loss at Citizens Bank Park.

Nola lasted a season-high 6 2/3 innings, surrendering one run on seven hits. It marked the first time this year he surpassed the 100-pitch mark.

Unfortunately, the Phillies' offense struggled again against Fish starter Caleb Smith and Hector Neris served up a two-out, two-run homer to Starlin Castro in the 10th inning.

"That’s on me," manager Gabe Kapler said afterward. "I trusted him and really wanted him to get through that second inning for us, and I felt really confident in him. But I knew what was best for Hector was to get him out of there after that first inning of work. That one’s on me.

"I thought he was strong. He did a really good job getting through that first inning for us. At the same time, that was asking a lot from him and putting a lot of responsibility on him."



The loss was the fourth of the season in extra innings for the Phillies, the most in Major League Baseball. The loss also means the Phils have dropped six of their last eight contests entering Friday.

It's easy to say it's still early in the season just 25 games in, but these games mean just as much as those later in the season.

"There's no question our lineup hasn't been clicking like it can," Kapler said. "We've been pretty beat up by injuries, but that's no excuse. We can perform better at the plate."

Hit around
Opponents are hitting .266 off Phillies' pitching this season. For reference, that's the third highest batting average against in all of baseball, behind Texas and Baltimore.

Phillies probables
Friday: Jerad Eickhoff (0-1, 3.60) vs. Jose Urena (1-3, 5.74)
Saturday: Jake Arrieta (3-2, 2.65) vs. Trevor Richards (0-3, 3.72)
Sunday: Zach Eflin (2-3, 4.15) vs. Pablo Lopez (2-3, 4.44)

Friday's lineup
McCutchen 8
Realmuto 2
Harper 9
Hoskins 3
Williams 7
Franco 5
Hernandez 4
Rodriguez 6
Eickhoff 1
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Follow Patrick on Twitter: @PGordonPBR

BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

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