PHOENIX – The Phillies looked lethargic and their offense was nearly nonexistent in a 6-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday night.
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The Phillies lost two of three in a series that got off to a promising start with a 7-3 win on Monday night. The Phils have lost three of their last four series.
The Phils went 2 for 17 with runners in scoring position in losing Tuesday night's game and they had just five hits, four of which were singles, in Wednesday night's loss.
Jason Vargas took the loss in his second start with the Phils.
Zac Gallen, a South Jersey native and Bishop Eustace product, got the win for Arizona. He pitched five innings of one-hit ball. He walked three and struck out six. Gallen debuted in the majors with Miami earlier this season and was traded to Arizona last week.
The loss dropped the Phillies into a tie with Milwaukee for the second spot in the NL wild-card race. The sizzling Mets and the Cardinals are both a half-game back.
The Phillies are 59-55.
Offensive struggles again
The Phillies got the leadoff man on base via a hit or a walk five times in the first eight innings and each time did not get another runner on base in that inning.
The Phillies' struggles with runners in scoring position continued. They were 0 for 3 in those situations. All of those at-bats ended in strikeouts after Scott Kingery walked and stole second in the third innings.
The Phils are just 24 for 117 (.205) with runners in scoring position over the last 12 games.
Rhys Hoskins went 1 for 10 in the three-game series. He is 7 for 45 (.156) over the last 12 games.
The Phillies had just four singles through 8 1/3 innings. Bryce Harper belted his 20th homer of the season with one out in the ninth to avert a shutout.
The soft-tossing lefty was not hit particularly hard in five innings of work. He gave up just four hits, and all of them were singles. One was a bloop and another was an infield hit. Vargas, however, walked three and hit two batters. The D-Backs turned a hit batsman and a walk into two runs in the third inning. They turned the infield hit and the bloop into two more runs in the fourth inning.
Phillies pitching struck out just two batters.
Kingery has started games at five different positions this season. He took over at third base when Maikel Franco was sent to the minors last week. Kingery had played well at the position before struggling in this one. He showed some inexperience by not fully looking a runner back to third base on a bunt play in the fourth and it cost the Phillies a run.
Later in the game, shortstop Jean Segura threw away a ball and that cost the Phils a run.
The Phillies open a four-game series in San Francisco on Thursday night. Good pitching matchup in the opener with Aaron Nola (10-2, 3.60) facing Madison Bumgarner (6-7, 3.92).
Friday night – LHP Drew Smyly (2-6, 7.01) vs. RHP Tyler Beede (3-6, 5.38)
Saturday afternoon – RHP Vince Velasquez (4-6, 4.23) vs. RHP Jeff Samardzija (8-9, 3.70)
Sunday night – RHP Jake Arrieta (8-8, 4.41) vs. LHP Conner Menez (0-1, 5.73)
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