Missed opportunities with runners in scoring position proved costly for the Phillies, who wasted a sixth-straight quality start from their starting pitcher.
Losses like these haven't occurred all that frequently, so it's not something the Phils, or Beerleaguer, needs to dwell on this morning. Generally, the Phillies seemed to perform a little better with runners in scoring position earlier in the season, but I don't have the numbers to support that and it's not an area of concern anyway; they have the highest OPS in the league (.813) with runners in scoring position. In all, they stranded 12 total, failing to capitalize on several golden opportunities, a handful occurring with all three outs to play with. But no need to rehash. What's done is done.
It's a shame to spoil what should have been a five-game winning streak and win No. 6 for J.A. Happ, who was terrific once again, going seven innings and setting a career high with seven strikeouts. Brad Lidge was tagged for the loss, set up by a hanging slider Joey Votto ripped for a lead-off double in the ninth. What's Lidge's ERA in non-save situations while wearing red pinstripes?
Rodrigo Lopez and the Phils try to rebound tonight against Homer Bailey. The Reds may be .500, but they're below average compared to the teams the Phillies have faced recently. It's really a key spot in the schedule to pad the win column, so they can't afford to let chances like last night go to waste. Nevertheless, 43-38 is exactly where they were a year ago.