The Philadelphia Phillies’ offensive woes have been perplexing for a team that boasts one of the most formidable lineups in baseball. Those struggles have contributed to wasting back-to-back strong outings from Roy Halladay(notes).
Halladay takes the mound when Philadelphia hosts the Texas Rangers in a matchup of division leaders Friday night.
The Phillies (26-17) scored one run for the third time in four games Thursday, falling 7-1 to Colorado. They’ve lost five of six, managing 10 runs during that stretch.
Ryan Howard(notes) and Jimmy Rollins(notes), both former NL MVPs, have played big roles in the struggles. Howard is hitless in his last 20 at-bats, while Rollins is 3 for 19 (.158) over his last five games. With Chase Utley(notes) out with an injury and Shane Victorino(notes) just placed on the disabled list with a strained right hamstring, the offense must begin finding ways to produce.
“We’re losing people every day and it’s got to stop sometime,” manager Charlie Manuel said. “We’ve got guys playing who when the season started were on the bench, and a couple were Triple-A guys.”
Halladay (5-3, 2.21 ERA) has borne the brunt of those offensive problems, getting three total runs of support in his last two starts - both losses. He suffered a 2-1 loss to Florida on May 10 and a 3-2 defeat to Atlanta on Sunday.
The right-hander has posted a 2.25 ERA in those outings while averaging a strikeout per inning.
Halladay started 19 games against the Rangers during his time with Toronto, losing the last two times he faced them. He has gone 2-3 with a 5.54 ERA in his last five starts versus Texas.
Wilson allowed four runs - two earned - in five innings of a 5-4 victory over Los Angeles on Sunday. Wilson has gone 1-2 in his last four starts despite a 3.21 ERA.
Davis started at designated hitter in place of Michael Young(notes), who got his first day off of the season. Young has seen Halladay the most of any Rangers player, going 12 for 43 (.279) with a home run and 12 strikeouts against him.
“Sometimes it’s games like this that get you going,” manager Ron Washington said of Feliz. “I thought he came out today and attacked. They did a good job of fouling balls off. They made him work.”
The Phillies have won four of six meetings with the Rangers, sweeping a three-game set in Philadelphia from June 7-9, 2005.