Phillies slide continues; club falls out of No. 8 playoff spot

Harper and Phillies continue to slide
To his credit, Phillies reliever Brandon Workman fielded questions on Tuesday night following another disastrous outing where he surrendered a two-run walk-off blast. 

“This obviously isn’t what I was looking for when I came over here,” Workman said. “It wasn’t what the team was looking for.” 

Workman threw a 2-1 cutter that rookie Yadiel Hernandez deposited over the right-field fence to give the Nationals an 8-7 win over the Phillies. Workman has a 6.92 ERA over 14 appearances with the Phils since being acquired at the trade deadline. 

"We’ve got to get our job done, and personally I have to do my job -- light years better than what I’m doing," Workman said. 

The Phillies sit two games below .500 and fell to 10th place in the National League playoff race. The top eight clubs make the postseason. The Phillies sit one game behind the Reds (28-28), Brewers (27-27), and Giants (27-27). 

“It definitely feels like a bad dream,” catcher J.T. Realmuto said. “The bottom line is we have to play better, and we have to play better in a hurry. We’re still in it. We’re not eliminated yet. We still have a chance to make the playoffs. We just have to play better baseball all around. 

 

"There’s not one area that’s really killing us. There’s not one area that we can’t improve to play better baseball and get to the playoffs. We just have to do it. We’re running out of time a little bit, but mathematically it’s possible.” 

The Phillies have one final game in D.C. on Wednesday before heading for a three-game set in Tampa Bay to conclude the regular season. It's likely now that the Phils will have to win out to have a shot at the No. 8 seed. 

“We have to fight out of it starting tomorrow,” manager Joe Girardi said. “And we’ve got to win games. That's the bottom line. Now we have to rely on other people. And we have to win games.” 

Bullpen woes 
The Phillies bullpen ERA sits at 7.21. It's the worst bullpen ERA in 90 years, dating back to the 1930 Phillies (8.01). The only other club to ever post an ERA over 7.00 was the 1936 St. Louis Browns. To be fair, as bad as the bullpen has been, it hasn't been helped much by the Phils defense. The bullpen xFIP is 4.69. 

Injury updates 
Realmuto said he's still dealing with some pain in his hip, but it's not enough to limit his ability to play. The same goes for Bryce Harper who is dealing with soreness in the lower back. 

Finale matchup 
Zach Eflin will aim to turn things around for the Phillies on Wednesday. He looked great on Friday, tossing a seven-inning complete game in a win over the Blue Jays. The Nationals counter with righty Erik Fedde.
 __________________________________
Follow Patrick on Twitter: @PGordonPBR

BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

No comments: