DETROIT — There was an impending sense of doom shortly after the Phillies announced Cliff Lee would be unable to make Saturday night’s start against the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.
With All-Star starting pitcher Max Scherzer taking the ball for the Tigers, the Phillies had a sense it was going to be a long night.
But Saturday’s game was decided quickly. The Tigers scored five runs in the first inning and three more in the second as they rolled to a 10-0 victory.
As a result, the Phillies extended their season-worst losing streak to seven games to fall to a season-low six games under .500 at 49-55. After scoring 13 runs in the first game back following the All-Star break, the Phillies have scored just 10 runs in the seven losses while going 5 for 39 (.128) with runners in scoring position.
Starting pitching report
It was a rough one for spot starter Raul Valdes. In 3 2/3 innings, the lefty allowed nine earned runs on 12 hits. The Tigers hit two homers off Valdes and had four extra-base hits. With this pitching line, Valdes became the third starter in Phillies history to allow 12 or more hits and nine or more runs in less than four innings.
Mike Mimbs was the last pitcher to accomplish the dubious feat on May 11, 1996 in an 11-3 loss to the Braves at the Vet.
Valdes is also the 17th pitcher in Phillies history to allow nine runs without issuing a walk in a game. Cole Hamels was the last to do it in an 11-2 loss in Chicago on Aug. 24, 2006.
For the Tigers, Max Scherzer improved to 15-1 by allowing one hit and one baserunner in six innings. Scherzer struck out seven and needed just 75 pitches (50 strikes) to whittle through the Phillies’ lineup.
The Angels’ Jered Weaver went 15-1 to open the 2012 season.
J.C. Ramirez, Jake Diekman and Justin De Fratus finished up in relief for Valdes. Ramirez allowed a run in 2 1/3 innings. Diekman and De Fratus each pitched a scoreless inning.
At the plate
The Phillies had two hits. Darin Ruf got one off Scherzer in the second inning and Kevin Frandsen got the other off reliever Al Albuquerque in the seventh.
For the Tigers, Miguel Cabrera homered in the first inning, singled home a run in second and hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
Torii Hunter and Victor Martinez each went 3 for 4. Jhonny Peralta and Alex Avila picked up a pair of hits.
The Phillies will seek to salvage a game against the Tigers on Sunday afternoon when rookie Jonathan Pettibone (5-4, 3.97) takes on right-hander Rick Porcello (7-6, 4.49).