Once again Kyle Kendrick ran into trouble in the first inning in his latest start, putting the Phillies in an early hole in Sunday’s 10-3 loss to the Nationals at Citizens Bank Park.
Kendrick gave up three runs in the first before retiring 14 straight. But then trouble reared its head again as Kendrick was charged with a couple more runs in the sixth inning as Washington rolled to its second straight win.
The loss sends the Phillies into the All-Star break 11 games under .500 at 42-53 and 10 games behind the Nationals and Braves in the NL East standings.
Starting pitching report
Kendrick allowed two singles and a three-run homer to Jayson Werth to open the game. He then retired the next 14 in a row before again finding trouble in the sixth when the Nats scored four more runs.
All told, Kendrick gave up five runs on five hits with five strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
Kendrick heads into the break with a 4-9 record and 4.62 ERA. He also has allowed 26 runs (24 earned) in his 19 first innings for a robust 11.37 first-inning ERA.
Nationals starter Tanner Roark allowed a run on four hits over seven innings. He did not allow a walk and struck out six.
Mario Hollands pitched for the first time since July 2 and showed some rust. In 1 1/3 innings, the lefty gave up two runs on three hits and a walk. Justin De Fratus followed with another 1 1/3 innings where he allowed three runs on four hits.
Jeff Manship closed it out for the Phillies.
At the plate
Ryan Howard drove in the Phillies’ first run on a ground out in the sixth and Cody Asche doubled in another with one out in the ninth. Catcher Cameron Rupp rounded out the scoring with an RBI ground out in the ninth.
Otherwise, the Phillies’ offense was quite languid. Asche led off the fifth with a double but was left stranded when the next three hitters struck out.
For the Nationals, Werth’s first-inning homer was his 12th of the season. He also added an RBI single in the ninth. Ryan Zimmerman clubbed his fourth homer of the season. Anthony Rendon had three hits for the Nats and Denard Span had a two-hit game.
It’s break time for the Phillies. The team is off until Friday when they will reconvene in Atlanta to kick off the second half. After playing three games against the Braves, the Phillies return to Citizens Bank Park for a seven-game homestand.
In the meantime, manager Ryne Sandberg has set up his pitching rotation for the first five games after the break:
Fri., July 18: A.J. Burnett (6-8, 3.83)
Sat., July 19: Cole Hamels 3-5, 2.93)
Sun., July 20: Kyle Kendrick (4-8, 4.46)
Mon., July 21: Cliff Lee (4-4, 3.18)
Tues., July 22: Roberto Hernandez (4-8, 4.22)