Phillies Closer Hector Neris Close to Franchise-Worst Record

Closer Hector Neris #50 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Closer Hector Neris #50 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

Phillies closer Hector Neris is approaching a Phillies all-time worst record.

Blown saves have been a tracked statistic in Major League Baseball since 1988. Saves, however, have been tracked since 1969. And while Jonathan Papelbon is infamously recognized as the Philadelphia Phillies all-time saves leader, current closer Hector Neris is dangerously close to setting the franchise record for most save opportunities blown.

Neris currently has 24 career blown saves, just two shy of 2008 World Series champion Ryan Madson’s franchise record of 26, according to FanGraphs.

The Dominican Republic native’s most recent blown save occurred during Wednesday’s back-and-forth game against the Washington Nationals. Despite having 5-0, 9-5, and 12-11 leads, the Phillies ultimately lost 13-12 — with Neris contributing to the third lost lead after allowing two runs on three hits in the ninth inning.

It was Neris’ fifth blown save this season, as well as the 24th of his eight-season career — all spent with the Phillies. Neris has three blown saves in June alone; over his past five appearances, the right-hander has a 12.46 ERA, with opposing batters slashing .333/.500/.733 against him.

In franchise history, 11 different players have donned red pinstripes and recorded at least 10 blown saves: Madson (26), Neris (24), Rheal Cormier (19), Brad Lidge (16), Papelbon (15), Jose Mesa (13), Antonio Bastardo (12), Luis Garcia (11), Tom Gordon (11), Tim Worrell (10), and Jeanmar Gomez (10).

However, Neris might not get the opportunity to blow any more saves and ultimately surpass Madson’s infamous franchise record. Following Wednesday’s game, Phillies manager Joe Girardi told reporters that he will take the off day on Thursday to think about whether Neris will remain in the position.

Girardi has continually supported his closer this season, even comparing him to Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera — saying he caught the right-hander and saw him blow saves as well.

But Neris is no Rivera (no one is); he’s not even 2008 champion Lidge. The skipper’s patience may have finally worn out.

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