SAN FRANCISCO — The Phillies’ offense has disappeared in the famous San Francisco fog.
The Phils suffered a 2-0 loss to the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park Saturday night. It was the second straight game in which the Giants have shut out the Phillies, who need a win Sunday afternoon to avoid being swept in the three-game series.
Less than a month ago, the Phillies were riding high thanks to a four-game sweep of the Giants in Philadelphia.
Now, the Phillies are 6-9 in their last 15 games and 31-25 on the season. They have scored just four runs in their last four games — and one of them should not have counted because Maikel Franco missed the plate.
Rookie left-hander Andrew Suarez, who entered Saturday night’s start with 5.65 ERA, held the Phillies scoreless over seven innings in his eighth big-league start. Suarez gave up just three hits, walked none and struck out five. Relievers Tony Watson and Hunter Strickland handled the rest.
Phillies starter Vince Velasquez pitched well but got no support from the offense. The only run he gave up came in the sixth inning after Joe Panik smacked a leadoff double. Panik moved to third on a ground ball then scored the game’s first run on a chopper to shortstop Scott Kingery. The Phillies had the infield in for Andrew McCutchen. Panik broke on contact and was able to slide in ahead of Kingery’s throw to catcher Jorge Alfaro. Kingery had to charge the ball and throw on the run. He did not get a lot on the ball. A firmer throw might have gotten Panic. The play was reviewed but umpire Jerry Meals’ safe call held up.
McCutchen drove in both of San Francisco’s runs. His sacrifice fly to center in the ninth padded the Giants’ lead.
The Phillies had just three hits on the night and one was an infield single. They did not draw a walk.
The Phillies came up empty on a couple of good scoring chances early in the game. Alfaro stroked a one-out triple in the third inning and was stranded on third. McCutchen, the Giants’ right fielder, made sure Alfaro died on third as he made a sensational running grab on a drive-by Cesar Hernandez to the huge alley in right-center. Hernandez’ drive would have been out of most parks.
In the fifth, the Phillies had runners on the corners with one out, but Suarez struck out Alfaro and Velasquez to get out of trouble.
Velasquez allowed five hits and a walk over 6 1/3 innings. He walked just one and struck out nine. He has allowed just four earned runs in his last four starts.