Phillies pitching struggles empower Padres to even NLCS

David Robertson #30 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
David Robertson #30 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

The Phillies dropped Game 2 to the Padres on Wednesday, evening the series.

The Philadelphia Phillies could not find a way to stop the San Diego Padres’ bats in Game 2 of the National League Championship Series on Wednesday, as they lost 8-5.

The game started in the Phillies’ favor — with them scoring four runs in the second inning. After that, however, the club’s bats fell mostly silent, whereas the Padres bats awoke. San Diego hit two solo home runs in the bottom of the second inning to cut their 4-0 deficit in half.

Phillies starter Aaron Nola could not shut down the Padres offense, which put up another five runs in the fifth inning. Six total earned runs were credited to the right-hander, as he struggled to find his form — despite topping out at 96 miles per hour with his fastball:

The Phillies bullpen did not settle things down at first either. Brad Hand came in to face left-handed hitter Jake Cronenworth, but he hit him with a two-strike pitch. Hand then allowed a hit to allow another run to score.

The Phillies offense stayed silent until the eighth inning, when Rhys Hoskins slugged a solo home run off Padres reliever Robert Suarez.

While the loss is tough to take for Phillies fans, it feels worse than it actually was — because the club held a 4-0 lead at one point. In most postseason scenarios, a team that begins on the road would be happy to split the first two games and return home with a win.

Manager Rob Thomson’s squad finds itself in that situation. They return home on Friday for three games to hopefully regain the series lead. The Phils have a home-field advantage while playing in South Philadelphia, as evidenced by their performance against the Atlanta Braves in the NLDS. Fans are sure to return to Citizens Bank Park with the same energy they had last weekend.

Wednesday’s loss was tough to take, but the series is far from over.

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