Phillies Review: Dodgers 5, Phillies 3

After being swept at home by the St.Louis Cardinals, the Phillies turned to Gavin Floyd to turn things around. That didn't turn out too well as the Phillies fell to 0-4 with a 5-3 loss to the Dodgers at Citizens Bank Park.

The Phillies needed rookie right-hander Gavin Floyd to come to the rescue following a three-game sweep at the hands of the Cardinals to start the season. Instead, the fourth overall pick in the 2001 draft pitched like a not-ready-for-prime-time player.

Floyd allowed five runs (three earned) and didn't make it out of the third inning as the Phils lost their fourth straight, 5-3 to the Dodgers.

Floyd earned a spot in the rotation by pitching with attitude in his final three spring appearances, but Friday night he reverted to the unsure, inconsistent kid who let the organization down last season.

"Gavin was a little off," manager Charlie Manuel said. "He walked four guys, made some mistakes. He's a better pitcher than what you saw."

Floyd was put in a pressure situation, one you would rather not create for a young starter. However, in order to walk a mile with a burden you need to be able to take the first step.

Floyd wobbled from the start, and when he needed his teammates to help him to his feet, they came up small.

"It was a disappointment more than anything," said Floyd, who allowed six hits and four walks. "I was trying to come in here and do really well. It didn't happen, so now I have to bounce back in my next start."

In the first inning Floyd gave up a leadoff single to Jason Repko, who stole second. The next hitter, Jose Cruz Jr., hit a grounder that required 1B Ryan Howard to range to his left to field - not the easiest play, but a ball that Howard should have fielded, which he didn't. Repko came around to score the first run.

After Floyd got the next two batters out, James Loney hit a ball down the right-field line that RF Bobby Abreu misplayed into a triple to make it 2-0.

It went downhill from there.

"That set the tone in the wrong way," Howard said of the fielding miscues. "We made a couple of errors that didn't help Gavin - present company included."

REPLAY: While Gavin Floyd didn't get the job done Friday in a 5-3 loss to the Dodgers, the bullpen tried to keep the team in the game with 6 1/3 innings of scoreless relief, an effort led by RHP Julio Santana (3 1/3 IP, 0 H).

However, the offense hasn't been tearing the cover off the ball, either, and after homers by LF Pat Burrell and C Sal Fasano cut a five-run deficit to 5-3 in the fourth inning the lineup barely made a peep.

In fact, between a two-out single by Jimmy Rollins in the fourth and David Dellucci's two-out double in the ninth, the Phils went 0-for-15 with eight strikeouts. At one point, six out of seven hitters went down on strikes.

NOTES, QUOTES

  • Jimmy Rollins didn't wait long to start a new hitting streak. A day after his 38-game streak ended he singled in each of his first three at-bats against the Dodgers.
  • Sal Fasano had a hard time shaking off a disturbing moment in the fourth inning when he lost the grip on his bat and hit a 15-year-old boy in the arm with it. With the incident still fresh on his mind, Fasano connected on an upper-deck homer to left for his first hit as a Phillie.
  • Julio Santana made amends for allowing a grand slam to Scott Rolen in his Phillies debut Monday by pitching 3 1/3 innings of no-hit, no-run relief against the Dodgers on Friday. He entered the game with bases loaded and two outs and got J.D. Drew to pop-out to end the inning.
  • David Dellucci got his first hit as a Phillie when he delivered a pinch-hit double in the ninth inning Friday. Dellucci has had a pinch plate appearance in each of the team's first four games.
  • Aaron Rowand is clearly pressing at the plate. After a sluggish spring he went 0-for-4 with 2 strikeouts Friday. After getting two hits in his first three ABs, Rowand is 0-for-11 with six K's.
THE NUMBERS GAME: 16 - Number of innings pitched by the starting pitchers in the Phillies' first four games of the season.

HE SAID WHAT? "These first four games out, we kind of stink. That's the bottom line." - Manager Charlie Manuel.


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