Instant Replay: Phillies 3, Rockies 2

Instant Replay: Phillies 3, Rockies 2

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DENVER — Staring at another loss, their most heartbreaking yet on their current road trip, the Phillies rallied in the ninth Sunday afternoon off Rockies closer Greg Holland and won, 3-2, on Cameron Rupp’s two-run double.
 
The hit gave Rupp a measure of revenge since he was thrown out at the plate in the eighth and helped the Phillies break a five-game losing streak, all losses coming on this trip. The Phillies also had a runner thrown out at home in the ninth.

The Rockies went ahead 2-1 on a two-out double in the seventh by Charlie Blackmon, his third double of the game. The hit off Aaron Nola scored pinch hitter Raimel Tapia, who walked and stole second.

Odubel Herrera hustled a single into a double to open the ninth against Holland and moved to third on Maikel Franco’s single. Hyun Soo Kim hit a grounder to Story, who threw out Herrera at the plate, but Rupp followed with his two-run double to the gap in left-center, tagging Holland with just his second blown save in 36 chances.

Starting pitching report
Nola made his Coors Field debut and his first start against the Rockies. He gave the Phillies another outstanding outing, working seven innings. It was a welcome change for the Phillies in the wake of the problems starters Nick Pivetta and Vince Velasquez encountered in the first two games of this series.

But Rockies rookie starter Jeff Hoffman, who limited the Phillies to one run and three hits in seven innings May 22 at Citizens Bank Park, went toe-to-toe with Nola for seven innings. Hoffman allowed a second-inning homer to Maikel Franco, his 17th of the year. 

Nola gave up six hits and two runs in seven innings with two walks and seven strikeouts. In his past nine starts, Nola has a 1.76 ERA (12 earned runs, 61 1/3 innings) with 17 walks and 70 strikeouts.

Hoffman gave up four hits and one run in seven innings with one walk and eight strikeouts, one shy of his career-high. He had nine strikeouts June 4 at San Diego. The seven innings matched Hoffman’s season-high, but it was the first time in five starts he went that far.

Bullpen report
Hector Neris allowed a leadoff bunt single before picking up his 11th save.

At the plate
Hernandez has reached base safely at least twice in each of his past nine games. The last Phillies player to do that was Blanco from Aug. 16-26, 2015.

Franco hit his 17th home run.

In the field
Gonzalez took a broken-bat hit away from Nava to end the third with a lunging catch of his sinking liner.

Williams opened the fourth with a grounder that shortstop Story went far to his left to grab and then got Williams by making a 360-degree turn to get off a throw from well to the right of second base.

Galvis made a diving back-handed stop on the outfield grass of Arenado’s grounder. Arenado doesn’t run well, but he beat Galvis’ long throw.

Shortstop Story made a backhanded grab of Kim's grounder and with a long jump throw just got him at first.

After Blackmon put the Rockies ahead in the eighth, first baseman Nava made a diving stop of Parra's hard grounder and flipped to Nola at first to end the inning.

Lights out
Mark Leiter Jr. struck out nine batters without issuing a walk Saturday in 4⅓ innings of relief of starter Nick Pivetta. Leiter is the fourth pitcher over the past 40 years to strike out nine or more batters without issuing a walk in a relief appearance.

The others were Tom Gordon for the 1989 Kansas City Royals (10 strikeouts), Bruce Ruffin (9) for the 1993 Rockies and Mark Guthrie (12) for the 1995 Minnesota Twins. 

Much improved
Andrew Knapp caught a bullpen session, an indication his bruised right hand is improved and he’s nearing a return. Knapp was hit on the hand with a foul tip Thursday and didn’t play in the Rockies series. The Phillies recalled catcher Jorge Alfaro on Friday from Triple A Lehigh Valley when Knapp was unavailable.

Up next
The Phillies are off Monday and will conclude their eight-game road trip with a two-game series at Atlanta that begins Tuesday at 7:35 p.m. Julio Teheran (7-9, 5.10) will start for the Braves. The Phillies have not named their starter to take the turn of Jake Thompson, who was optioned to Triple A Lehigh Valley after his last start Thursday against the Los Angeles Angels.

MLB Notes: Ian Kinsler rips veteran umpire Angel Hernandez

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MLB Notes: Ian Kinsler rips veteran umpire Angel Hernandez

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler had harsh words Tuesday for Angel Hernandez, saying the veteran umpire should get a different job.

A day after being ejected from a game for questioning Hernandez's calls on balls and strikes, Kinsler told reporters covering the Tigers that Hernandez is a bad umpire who is "messing" with games "blatantly."

"It has to do with changing the game. He's changing the game. He needs to find another job, he really does," Kinsler said.

Kinsler's comments were reported online by multiple media outlets just before Detroit played the Texas Rangers and early in the game.

After the Rangers' 10-4 win Tuesday night, when Hernandez worked third base, the umpire said he didn't know about Kinsler's criticism. When told in general what the player said, Hernandez said "it doesn't matter."

"I'm not at liberty to discuss tit-for-tat what's going on. As a matter of fact, I don't even care what he said," Hernandez said. "What I care about is going out there and doing my job, to the best I can do" (see full story).

Marlins: Stanton homers in 6th straight game
MIAMI -- Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton has homered in his sixth straight game, hitting his 44th of the season off San Francisco Giants left-hander Madison Bumgarner.

Stanton connected for a solo shot to left-center field in the third inning Tuesday night, tying the score at 2. The All-Star outfielder has 10 home runs in his last 11 games, and 23 in the last 35.

The major league record for consecutive games with a home run is eight, set by Dale Long of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1956, Don Mattingly of the New York Yankees in 1987 and Ken Griffey Jr. of the Seattle Mariners in 1993.

The last player to go deep in six consecutive games was Colorado's Nolan Arenado, in early September 2015.

Stanton had already broken the Miami record for home runs in a season. He surpassed Gary Sheffield, who hit 42 in 1996.

Going into Tuesday night, Stanton's 22 homers in 34 games had only been exceeded twice in major league history. Sammy Sosa hit 25 during a 34-game stretch in 1998, and Barry Bonds had 24 in 2001, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Reds: Mesoraco out 3-6 weeks with broken foot
CHICAGO -- Cincinnati Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco will be out three to six weeks after he broke a bone in his left foot Monday.

Mesoraco, who was placed on the 10-day disabled list Tuesday, was hit by a pitch from Chicago Cubs starter Jose Quintana in the second inning of a 15-5 loss at Wrigley Field.

Mesoraco is hitting .213 in 56 games with six homers and 14 RBIs. He was an All-Star in 2014 when he batted .273 with 25 homers and 80 RBIs, but two hip surgeries and a left shoulder operation limited Mesoraco to 39 games with 95 at-bats in 2015 and 2016. In those two seasons, he had a .158 average and no home runs.

The Reds recalled outfielder Phillip Ervin from Triple-A Louisville to fill the roster spot before Tuesday night's game at Chicago.

Phillies can't overcome fielding miscues in loss to Padres

Phillies can't overcome fielding miscues in loss to Padres

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SAN DIEGO — For the second night in a row, a highly touted Phillies prospect belted his first big-league home run.

Other highlights were difficult to find in an 8-4 loss to the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night (see Instant Replay).

The Phillies (43-74) are the worst team in baseball and they looked every bit of it as they were held hitless for the first 4 2/3 innings, had just four hits through the first eight innings, made two errors, misplayed another ball, walked five batters and hit another.

The sloppiness began early as work-in-progress leftfielder Rhys Hoskins, in just his sixth big-league game at the position, misplayed a catchable ball that would have ended the first inning into an RBI double. Starting pitcher Mark Leiter Jr. walked the next batter then surrendered a two-run double as the Padres put three quick ones on the board.

Leiter was tagged for four more runs in the fifth inning, but all were unearned after errors by third baseman Maikel Franco and catcher Jorge Alfaro.

Leiter allowed seven hits, including two homers, three walks (all of them scored) and hit a batter in five innings of work. Still, he may have given up just one run had he gotten some defensive support.

"He wasn't at his best, but our defense let us down," manager Pete Mackanin said.

Leiter would not blame the defense.

"That’s baseball," he said when asked about Hoskins' misplay in the first inning. "You just have to keep going and make the next pitch and get the next guy, and unfortunately I wasn’t able to get the next guy and it cost us a couple of runs. I have to do better. I have to find a way to get that out."

Hoskins' misplay came on a liner to his left by lefty-hitting Yangervis Solarte.

"That’s a tough play, especially off a left-handed bat," Mackanin said. "He looks sure-handed out there. It was just one of those plays you’ve got to be out there for a while to know how to read. It's understandable."

Alfaro, the rookie catcher, had the Phillies' first hit with two outs in the top of the fifth inning and it was memorable on a couple of fronts.

First, it was his first big-league home run.

Second, he killed it.

The two-run homer came off the bat at 114 miles per hour, making it the hardest-hit homer by a Phillie this season. It traveled 413 feet over the center-field wall and did so on a low line.

"I thought it was going to be a double off the wall," Alfaro said.

"That was a missile," Mackanin said.

"The launch angle wasn't quite high enough," he added with a laugh. "You don’t normally see home runs with that low of a trajectory off the bat. It was cool to see.

"That's why we like him. If you watch him in batting practice, you see the power."

Alfaro's first big-league homer came one night after Hoskins hit his first and second big-league homers. He added a two-run home run in the ninth inning Tuesday night as the Phillies cut into the Padres' lead but could not come all the way back.

The Phillies played without their best hitter, Odubel Herrera. He was out with a sore left hamstring (see story). Padres rookie Dinelson Lamet, who entered his 14th big-league start with an ERA of 5.00, capitalized on a weakened Phillies' lineup and pitched seven innings of three-hit, two-run ball. He walked one and struck out seven.

Rookie reliever Jesen Therrien was the Phillies' most effective pitcher with two scoreless innings and three strikeouts. He showed a tight, hard, downward-breaking slider — a weapon.

"I finally saw that slider we saw in the spring," Mackanin said. "That's very encouraging."