Phillies continue to flail at the plate against poor pitchers

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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 09: Jorge Alfaro #38 of the Philadelphia Phillies is hit by a pitch against the New York Mets during the sixth inning of a game at Citi Field on September 9, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 09: Jorge Alfaro #38 of the Philadelphia Phillies is hit by a pitch against the New York Mets during the sixth inning of a game at Citi Field on September 9, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
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The Phillies had the chance to take advantage of facing a sub-par pitcher Sunday, but failed to do so, just like they have so many times before.

Looking ahead at this weekend’s Mets series, Sunday was almost penciled in as a loss from the start. The Phillies were supposed to face NL Cy Young favorite Jacob deGrom, who dominated them the last time he faced them. Then, the poor weather in New York led to deGrom to be scratched from his start so he didn’t hurt himself.

The Mets sent out Corey Oswalt to replace deGrom. Coming into Sunday’s game, he had a 6.66 ERA, 6.04 fielding-independent pitching, 1.32 WHIP, and allowed 12 home runs in 13 appearances. The rookie should have been easy pickings for the Phils.

Philadelphia had the chance to bury Oswalt and the Mets early, but their only runs against him came on a Rhys Hoskins home run in the first inning. They loaded the bases in the second, but Justin Bour struck out to leave them loaded.

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The lead given by Hoskins’s home run lasted for a few innings before things fell apart. Vince Velasquez allowed four runs in the fifth without recording to an out, leading to an early hook for him. From there, it was clear the club was out of the game.

From there, there was little offense. They managed just three hits after the second inning. They loaded the bases again in the sixth with one out, but a Wilson Ramos sacrifice fly scored the only run of the inning.

Carlos Santana hit a two-out home run in the ninth, but Scott Kingery struck out for the 112th time this season to end the game. Overall, the team left seven runners on base.

Of the five pitchers the Mets used, Seth Lugo was the only one who was not a rookie. Drew Gagnon, who had an 11.57 ERA coming into Sunday, threw two hitless innings. It was another example of Philadelphia making unproven and/or bad pitchers look good.

This is a troubling trend that has existed for quite some time. In the Marlins series, Jose Urena, who had a 4.41 ERA entering the game, threw seven one-run innings. Sandy Alcantara, in just his second major-league start, threw seven shutout innings. The last time they faced the Mets, Jason Vargas, who has a 6.75 ERA, kept Philadelphia quiet for five innings.

Next. Give Joey Meneses 40-man roster spot. dark

The offense has been frustrating all season, and it has been even worse recently. It is especially frustrating to see it struggle when they face pitchers they should be smacking around.

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