Almost impossible to pitch as poorly as Phillies' 4 bullpen acquisitions have


The Phillies had the worst bullpen in baseball before they acquired David Phelps, Brandon Workman, Heath Hembree and David Hale in late August.

They still have the worst bullpen in baseball.

After another late-game collapse in Thursday's series opener in Miami, the Phillies' bullpen has a post-trade-deadline ERA of 8.42, better than only the Rockies.

It has a 6.59 ERA since the trade with the Red Sox on August 21, third-worst in baseball.

The four newcomers — Phelps, Workman, Hembree and Hale — have allowed 19 earned runs in 22⅓ innings ... with 52 baserunners! More than 2.3 baserunners per inning. That is no easy feat of futility.

Those four have a 7.66 ERA. The Phillies' bullpen prior to their arrival had a 7.97 ERA.

Those four have faced 115 batters and have an opponents' slash-line of .364/.452/.737. That is essentially a prime year from Barry Bonds.

Workman is 5 for 7 in save attempts with two losses. You hate to harp on it, but it's just absurd how many men he has put on base. He's faced 54 batters, retiring 30 and putting on 24. He's allowed five runs in 10⅓ innings as a Phillie but he's also allowed all five of the runners he's inherited to score.

Five of the last 25 hitters Hembree has faced have homered.

Three of the last 10 hitters Phelps has faced have homered.

Hale has barely pitched here, appearing twice in losses. He began his Phillies career allowing an RBI single, a two-run double, a lineout and a two-run homer to the first four hitters he faced.

After the trades, the Phillies' most consistent relievers became incumbents Tommy Hunter and Hector Neris. 


From August 14 through September 7, Hunter allowed one run in 11⅔ innings. He's allowed five runs in 1⅓ innings since.

Neris is still pitching well, using his fastball more to increase the effectiveness of his trademark splitter. Neris has allowed one earned run in his last nine appearances.

The only two relievers who have pitched consistently well for the Phillies this month are Neris and rookie left-hander JoJo Romero, who has allowed two runs and four baserunners in six innings with eight strikeouts.