Curtis Granderson

Phillies-Dodgers observations: Another thrilling rally past MLB leader

Phillies-Dodgers observations: Another thrilling rally past MLB leader


The legend of Rhys Hoskins continued to grow Tuesday night. The rookie sensation had two big hits — both on full counts — and drove in four of the Phillies' runs in a come-from-behind, 6-2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citizens Bank Park.

The Phillies entered the game with the second-worst record in the majors. They have rallied to beat the team with the game's best record two nights in a row. And they've done it on nights when the Dodgers had Clayton Kershaw and Yu Darvish on the mound.

Not too shabby. Two entertaining wins.

• Hoskins drove in the Phillies' first run with another in a long line of impressive at-bats in the sixth inning. Hoskins has an uncanny ability to remain selective at the plate and force pitchers into counts where they have to throw a fastball. He did it again in this at-bat. There were runners on first and second with one out and the Dodgers up, 2-0. Hoskins laid off a breaking ball from Darvish on 2-2 and that ran the count to 3-2. Hoskins then got a down-and-in fastball — 96 mph — and laced it past third baseman Justin Turner and into left field to drive home Cesar Hernandez, who had reached base on an error.

• An inning after he put the Phillies on the board, Hoskins broke a 2-2 tie with a three-run double against hard-throwing reliever Pedro Baez in the seventh. The Phillies tied the game at 2-2 when Odubel Herrera drew a bases-loaded walk against Baez. That brought up Hoskins for an epic at-bat against Baez. Hoskins saw 10 straight, 95-plus-mph fastballs from Baez and fouled off four of them with the count full. He then unloaded on a heater, sending it to left-center and clearing the bases to give the Phillies a 5-2 lead (see story).

• Hoskins saw 30 pitches in the game. He now has 43 RBIs since his debut on Aug. 10. That's the most in the majors over that span.

• Overshadowed by Hoskins-mania: Aaron Nola pitched seven innings of two-run ball. Phillies starters Nola and Nick Pivetta have allowed just four runs in 13 innings over the first two games of the series. They've kept their team alive until the big inning has arrived.

• Aaron Altherr was a bases-loaded hero on Monday night. (His grand slam against Kershaw accounted for all the Phillies' runs in that game.) He had a chance to do some bases-loaded damage in the sixth inning of this game but grounded into an inning-ending double play. Altherr did contribute a solo homer in the bottom of the eighth. That gave Hector Neris a little breathing room in the ninth.

• Darvish registered his 200th strikeout out the season when he got Freddy Galvis in the sixth. He gave up just one unearned run in 5 1/3 innings of work.

• J.P. Crawford led off the decisive seventh inning with a triple. He scored the tying run, but didn't exactly run the bases well as he failed to tag on a fly ball to Curtis Granderson toward the right-field line.

• Herrera stroked his 40th double of the season to lead off the bottom of the fourth inning. That's the second most in the NL behind Colorado's Nolan Arenado, who entered Tuesday night with 42.

• Herrera died on third base in that inning. For a moment, it looked like he might score when Altherr lofted a long, well-hit fly ball to center. The ball sounded like a home run off the bat, but was knocked down by a stiff wind and died in Chris Taylor's glove for the third out.

• More good work in this one by Luis Garcia. He has allowed just one run in his last 17 innings.

• There was a cool scene before the game. The Phillies honored prospects Tom Eshelman and Scott Kingery with the Paul Owens Award for being the top minor leaguers in the organization this year (see story). Ten other previous Owens Award winners were in uniform for the game, including Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley and Phillies first base coach Mickey Morandini. The 10 players in uniform joined Eshelman and Kingery in a group picture before the game.

• Kershaw, Darvish ... the Phillies face another formidable pitcher in lefty Alex Wood (15-3, 2.69) on Wednesday night. Wood was an All-Star in July. Jake Thompson (2-2, 4.46) pitches for the Philllies.

MLB Notes: Dodgers acquire Curtis Granderson from Mets

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MLB Notes: Dodgers acquire Curtis Granderson from Mets

NEW YORK -- The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired outfielder Curtis Granderson and cash from the New York Mets for a player to be named later or cash.

The teams announced the deal after their games Friday night. The 36-year-old Granderson is hitting .228 with 19 home runs and 52 RBIs this year.

Los Angeles is running away with the NL West. The Dodgers are 86-34 after Friday's win at Detroit . Granderson gives Los Angeles another option for the outfield along with Cody Bellinger, Yasiel Puig, Chris Taylor and Joc Pederson.

Pederson has been struggling quite a bit of late, hitting .149 since the All-Star break. Granderson, like Pederson, offers some power from the left side of the plate.

This is Granderson's fourth team as he started with Tigers then went to Yankees. He signed a $60 million, four-year contract with the Mets before the 2014 season. He hit 95 home runs -- including a grand slam in his final at-bat -- for the Mets in 573 games and was part of the team that won the National League pennant in 2015 (see full story).

Nationals: Scherzer placed on DL with sore neck
SAN DIEGO -- Max Scherzer was scratched from his scheduled start Friday night and placed on the 10-day disabled list with a sore neck.

The Washington Nationals turned to left-hander Matt Grace to face the San Diego Padres.

Manager Dusty Baker announced the move about two hours before first pitch.

Scherzer was coming off a 10-strikeout performance against San Francisco.

Grace is 1-0 with a 4.46 ERA. He grew up in the Los Angeles area and played at UCLA.

Scherzer is 12-5 with a 2.25 ERA this season.

Cubs: Lester placed on 10-day DL
CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs got an encouraging report on Jon Lester before placing the ace left-hander on the 10-day disabled list on Friday.

Lester was examined by team physician Dr. Stephen Gryzlo after he left Chicago's 13-10 loss to Cincinnati on Thursday in the second inning. He was diagnosed with tightness in his left lat and general shoulder fatigue, but his shoulder and side were deemed structurally sound.

"I think the big thing is just the overall performance was not there," Lester said. "This is something that we tried to manage and get through. It just got to a point where you're doing a disservice to your team by going out there and not being able to perform.

"You feel like you can't help (going on the DL), but at the same time I wasn't helping out there. Let's get this thing right and get back to being myself" (see full story).

Dodgers: Gonzalez activated from DL
DETROIT -- The Los Angeles Dodgers have activated first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the disabled list, and he's set to start Friday night against Detroit.

The 35-year-old Gonzalez has missed over two months because of a herniated lumbar disk. He last played for the Dodgers on June 11.

Gonzalez went 6 for 31 with a home run and six RBIs during a nine-game rehab assignment with Class A Rancho Cucamonga and Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Instant Replay: Mets 6, Phillies 2

Instant Replay: Mets 6, Phillies 2


Rhys Hoskins picked up his first big-league hit in his fourth game Sunday, but poor baserunning from his teammates and two more home runs from the Mets did the Phillies in during a 6-2 loss.

Trailing 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning, the Phillies loaded the bases with no outs but managed just one run. Odubel Herrera, who otherwise had another nice offensive day, made a costly baserunning blunder by not paying attention to Freddy Galvis or third base coach Juan Samuel.

With nobody out and the sacks full, Nick Williams hit a fly ball to medium-deep center field, but Galvis faked a tag-up from third base. An unfocused Herrera ran to third with his head down and the Phillies had two men on third. Herrera was tagged out for an inexcusable double play.

The Phillies dropped three of four games to the Mets to fall to 43-72 on the season.

Since 2012, the Phils are 15-39 at home against the Mets, who have 55 home runs in their last 23 games at Citizens Bank Park.

Starting pitching report
Zach Eflin pitched pretty well most of the afternoon but the Mets' two most powerful lefties — Michael Conforto and Curtis Granderson — touched him up with two-run home runs.

Eflin allowed four runs on seven hits over 5⅓ innings with no walks and five strikeouts. He has a 5.76 ERA in 10 starts after posting a 5.54 ERA in 11 starts last season.

Mets right-hander Chris Flexen put 10 men on base and needed 98 pitches to complete five innings but allowed just two runs, lowering his ERA from 8.49 to 7.02.

Bullpen report
Jesen Therrien came on in relief of Eflin and got two quick outs for his second straight scoreless outing.

Adam Morgan pitched two scoreless innings of relief. He's lowered his ERA from 6.43 to 5.35 over his last four appearances.

At the plate
Herrera had the baserunning blunder but once again, the good outweighed the bad. Herrera singled and walked twice, extending his hitting streak to 16 games, the longest single-season streak by a Phillie since Raul Ibanez hit in 18 straight in 2010.

We've outlined many times how hot Herrera has been since the beginning of June, but another promising development is his recent control of the strike zone. At the All-Star break, hitting coach Matt Stairs pushed him to walk more than he struck out in the second half. Since then, Herrera has 12 walks and 17 K's. Prior to the All-Star break, he had 16 walks and 84 K's.

Hoskins picked up his first big-league RBI in the first inning and his first hit in the fifth. Hoskins started his Phillies career 0 for 12, matching Chris Coste in 2006 for the longest hitless streak to start a Phils career since Lonnie Smith in 1978-79.

Hoskins also walked for the third time in four games.

Williams had a rough day, going 0 for 3 and leaving seven men on base.

Conforto and Granderson each stayed hot for the Mets.

In 31 career games against the Phillies, Conforto has hit .295 with a 1.040 OPS, seven doubles, nine homers and 25 RBIs.

Granderson, who could still be traded at some point this month, has been locked-in since mid-May. He's hit .284/.407/.597 since May 15 with 14 doubles, 15 home runs and 36 RBIs and it seems like nobody has noticed.

Yoenis Cespedes had the day off.

In the field
Reliever Edubray Ramos fielded a groundball from Asdrubal Cabrera in the seventh and threw it in the dirt to first base. Hoskins, in his first major-league start at first base, couldn't make the tough scoop.

Up next
The Phillies head to California for a seven-game road trip this week that includes three games in San Diego and four in San Francisco.

Monday, 10:10 p.m. — Jerad Eickhoff (3-7, 4.45) vs. LHP Travis Wood (2-4, 6.71)

Tuesday, 10:10 p.m. — TBA vs. Dinelson Lamet (6-4, 5.00)

Wednesday, 3:40 p.m. — Nick Pivetta vs. LHP Clayton Richard (5-12, 5.14)