After having an extra day off, the Philadelphia Phillies will try to end a five-game losing streak and get their first win in their new stadium when they host the Cincinnati Reds in the finale of a rain-shortened series at Citizens Bank Park.
The Phillies opened the ballpark with a 4-1 loss to the Reds in the series opener Monday, and then had an off day on Tuesday. Then, the scheduled middle game of the series was rained out on Wednesday.
In the opener, the Phillies drew boos from fans angered by the team’s slow start.
A combination of the team’s poor play and the rainy weather for the opener resulted in the upper deck being mostly empty by the fifth inning. Also, some of the remaining fans chanted “Let’s Go Flyers!” by the seventh.
“When this thing turns around, watch out,” Philadelphia left fielder Pat Burrell said.
The Phillies spent 33 seasons at Veterans Stadium, before moving into their long-awaited $458 million ballpark. Despite the high expectations created by several offseason additions, the Phillies have struggled.
Bobby Abreu’s first home run was the only bright spot for a dismal Phillies offense that has scored 16 runs in seven games.
“With the people we have in the lineup, we expect to score runs,” Philadelphia manager Larry Bowa said. “We have some guys that can play. They’re going to hit. It’ll happen.”
Cincinnati, meanwhile, has been one of the league’s early surprises, winning four of its last five games.
Griffey, who has battled various injuries in his five-year stint with the Reds, also made an outstanding defensive play in the third to take away an extra-base hit, then threw out a runner trying to stretch a single into a double.
“The weather was nasty, the wind looked bad, but the guys were making the plays,” Reds manager Dave Miley said.