Phillies

Archie Bradley implodes in another awful Phillies loss in Miami

Phillies

Ranger Suarez, Hector Neris and Connor Brogdon had shut the Marlins out for seven innings. The offense hadn't done much, but just enough.

The Phillies were on their way to evening another all-important, late-season series in Miami. 

Then they suffered the gut-punch that always seems to occur at Marlins Park. Archie Bradley allowed three eighth-inning runs, including a go-ahead, opposite-field two-run homer to Lewis Brinson. The Phillies lost, 3-2.

The Phils are 69-66 with 27 games to play. They began and ended the night two games back in the NL East of the Braves, who have also lost two in a row at Coors Field.

The Phillies have lost 20 of their last 31 games at Marlins Park. They are 7-8 in the season series and have hit .217.

"Miguel Rojas (RBI single in the eighth) is a borderline Hall of Fame player against the Phillies, I feel like," said Bradley, who's in his first year here. "That's something we talked about early on, that we have to beat the Marlins. You look at what they said last season, if we beat the Marlins, we get into the playoffs. It's kind of the same scenario here.

"Those guys play us really well and I mean, yeah, it's something we definitely talk about. Not that we put any more pressure on us, but we know the history, we know the late-inning losses. It's something that, in a positive way, it's like, 'Let's go get these guys, let's beat these guys.' Because we should. We haven't. We have to tomorrow. A win tomorrow goes a long way for us.

 

It was the Phillies’ 11th loss of the season when leading in the eighth inning or later. The only team in the majors that has dropped more games in those situations is the Marlins.

Andrew McCutchen put them on the board in the fourth inning with his 23rd home run of the season. Suarez, the starting pitcher, added an excuse-me RBI double in the inning. 

Suarez pitched five scoreless innings with seven strikeouts. He threw 71 pitches after throwing 95 and 99 in his last two starts. Manager Joe Girardi and Suarez both said he's dealing with a bit of a dead arm as he continues to develop stamina as a starter. Suarez said he's felt the fatigue in his triceps coming out of his last start and acknowledged it could be the result of those two higher pitch counts. 

“It didn’t act up tonight,” Girardi said, “but I can’t take that chance.”

Suarez has a 1.71 ERA in seven starts since joining the Phillies' rotation. Over that span, Aaron Nola's ERA is 5.46, Zack Wheeler's is 4.81 and Kyle Gibson's is 4.79.

Bradley had pitched so well during a six-week stretch from June 30 to mid-August but has struggled of late. He's allowed nine earned runs in his last eight innings as his ERA has ballooned from 2.52 to 3.92.

Saturday was crucial to this three-game set because the Phillies are going with a bullpen game Sunday. Now, they've already lost the series with a chance to be swept, which would cancel out the positivity of the series they just swept in D.C.

The Phils have four games left with the Marlins. They can control whether or not they hear all offseason about Miami again having their number. This weekend has not inspired much hope.

"It’s frustrating but you’ve got to turn the page and move on to tomorrow and find a way to win a game," Girardi said. "Losing these two games did not end our season. There’s still 27 games left and we’ve got to play better. We’ve got to score more runs."

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