Instant Replay: Dodgers 5, Phillies 0

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Instant Replay: Dodgers 5, Phillies 0

BOX SCORE

LOS ANGELES – The Phillies began a killer stretch in which they face three of the top pitchers in baseball in consecutive games with a 5-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

Lefty Clayton Kershaw, the Dodgers’ three-time Cy Young winner, overpowered the Phillies' hitters in pitching his first shutout of the season. He scattered eight hits, walked none and struck out 13.

Meanwhile, Phillies rookie Adam Morgan lasted just four innings.

The Phillies dropped to 29-58 overall and 11-33 on the road. Both are the worst in the majors.

Starting pitching report
Morgan (1-2) gave up six hits, including two homers, and five runs over four innings. All the runs came on homers.

Morgan did not help himself by failing to start what might have been an inning-ending double play in the third and Jimmy Rollins followed with a three-run homer.

Since June 1, Phillies starting pitchers are a majors-worst 3-19 with a 6.76 ERA. They have pitched just 185 innings over that span, the lowest in the majors.

Kershaw (6-6) raised his NL-leading strikeout total to 160.

He has allowed just two runs over 23 innings in his last three starts. The Dodgers lost the previous two by scores of 3-2 and 2-1.

Kershaw preserved his shutout with a pair of strikeouts with a man on third to end the game.

Bullpen report
Hector Neris, Jake Diekman and Justin De Fratus pitched scoreless ball after Morgan departed.

It was all Kershaw on the Dodgers’ side.

At the plate
Freddy Galvis and Domonic Brown had two hits each for the Phillies. Brown and Carlos Ruiz doubled.

A.J. Ellis smacked a two-run homer for the Dodgers in the second inning. Rollins hit his three-run homer an inning later.

Health check
Right-hander Jonathan Pettibone hit a roadblock in his recovery from shoulder surgery and will have another surgery later this month, the team announced. Pettibone first had surgery in June 2014. Wilmington surgeon Craig Morgan will perform a procedure known as an interval closure on Pettibone. Morgan had a similar surgery in January 2014.

Up next
The assignment gets no easier for the Phillies in the series finale Thursday night as they face right-hander Zack Greinke. He is 7-2 and leads the majors with a 1.48 ERA. Severino Gonzalez (3-2, 8.28) goes for the Phillies.

The Phillies face World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner in San Francisco on Friday night.

Sources: Phillies close to signing reliever Joaquin Benoit

Sources: Phillies close to signing reliever Joaquin Benoit

WASHINGTON – It looks as if the Phillies will have some action at the winter meetings.

The team is close to signing veteran reliever Joaquin Benoit, sources tell CSNPhilly.com. The winter meetings officially begin on Monday. The signing is expected to be announced before the meetings end on Thursday.

Benoit, 39, is a veteran of 15 seasons in the majors. He is coming off a strong 2016 season in which he pitched in 51 games for Seattle and Toronto and recorded a 2.81 ERA.

Benoit began the 2016 season with the Mariners and had a 5.18 ERA in 26 games. He was traded to Toronto in July and gave up just one run in 23 2/3 innings over 25 games, but did not pitch in the postseason after suffering a torn calf muscle in late September.

The right-hander has pitched for six teams in his career and has a lifetime 3.79 ERA in 712 games.

Entering the offseason, Phillies general manager Matt Klentak said he wanted to improve the bullpen. He opened the offseason by trading for veteran right-hander Pat Neshek and last week claimed lefty David Rollins off waivers from Texas. Now, Klentak is poised to add Benoit.

Benoit has mostly pitched in a setup role in his career, but he does have closer experience. It is unclear what role he’d pitch in for the Phillies. The Phils have Jeanmar Gomez and Hector Neris returning to the back of their bullpen in 2017. Benoit could complement that pair or the Phillies could choose to trade Gomez or Neris.

Neris pitched in 79 games in 2016 and had a 2.58 ERA, so the Phillies would only deal him if they were to get a strong package of talent in return.

Phillies tender contracts to 3 players as Cody Asche becomes free agent

Phillies tender contracts to 3 players as Cody Asche becomes free agent

The Phillies tendered contracts to three arbitration-eligible players on Friday night and set another free.
 
Reliever Jeanmar Gomez and infielders Cesar Hernandez and Freddy Galvis were tendered contracts for the 2017 season while outfielder Cody Asche was let go after four seasons with the club. 
 
The Phillies signaled their intention to let Asche go when they designated him for assignment, a move that removed him from the 40-man roster, on Friday afternoon. The club had the option of trading Asche — and likely had discussions with other clubs — but ultimately decided to non-tender him before the 8 p.m. deadline. The move made Asche a free agent.
 
The Phils had removed Asche from the 40-man roster to clear a spot for David Rollins, a left-handed reliever who was claimed off waivers from Texas on Friday (see story)
 
Galvis and Hernandez, the team’s regular shortstop and second baseman, respectively, were certain to receive contracts for 2017. Gomez was less certain. He saved 37 games for the Phils in 2016, but struggled badly late in the season.
 
Phillies officials will try to negotiate 2017 salaries with all three players. If an agreement cannot be reached with a player, an arbitration hearing will be held later in the winter to determine that player’s salary for the coming season.
 
Gomez made $1.4 million in 2016, Galvis $2 million and Hernandez $525,000. According to mlbtraderumors.com, Gomez projects to make $4.6 million in arbitration, Galvis $4.4 million and Hernandez $2.5 million. 

The Phillies' roster is full at 40.