Instant Replay: Twins 6, Phillies 5



MINNEAPOLIS — The Phillies blew a three-run lead in the fifth inning and ended up with a 6-5 loss to the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday night.
The loss was the Phillies’ ninth in a row and 26th in the last 32 games. They are 30-43 on the season.
The Twins have beaten the Phillies two straight nights, but still have the worst record in the majors at 23-48.
Starting pitching report
Adam Morgan had another rough outing. He gave up 11 hits and five runs over five innings.
Morgan’s teammates forged a 5-2 lead with three runs in the top of the fifth, but the lefty could not come up with the shutdown inning in the bottom of the frame. He gave up four hits and three runs as the Twins tied the game. Eduardo Escobar had the big hit, a hard-hit line drive over rightfielder Peter Bourjos’ head that went for a two-run triple. Bourjos broke in on the ball and it cost him a chance to make the catch.
Morgan’s ERA in 11 starts is 6.55. His place in the rotation is in jeopardy, especially with Vince Velasquez getting close to coming off the disabled list. Asked before the game if this was a pivotal start for Morgan, manager Pete Mackanin replied with a firm, “Yes.”
Phillies starting pitchers have an ERA of 6.11 in 21 games in the month of June. They have given up 139 hits and 72 earned runs in 106 innings.
Minnesota’s Kyle Gibson gave up eight hits, including a pair of homers, and five runs over six innings.
Bullpen report
David Hernandez took the loss after allowing two hits and a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh. Hernandez has allowed nine runs over 4 1/3 innings in his last four appearances.
Andrew Bailey pitched a scoreless inning, but limped off the field after the third out. He was diagnosed with a left hamstring strain and listed as day to day.
The Twins’ bullpen pitched scoreless ball.
Taylor Rogers was the winning pitcher and Fernando Abad got the save.
At the plate
Cameron Rupp and Andres Blanco hit solo homers for the Phillies. They have hit six homers in the last two games.
The Twins intentionally walked Maikel Franco to get to Ryan Howard with two men on in the fifth. Howard, who had gone hitless in his first two at-bats to fall to .139, singled up the middle to drive in a run.
Escobar and Max Kepler both drove in two runs for the Twins.
In the field
Bourjos’ misplay in right field in the fifth inning hurt. He was upset that he did not catch the ball that cost the Phils two runs.
Minnesota centerfielder Byron Buxton made a superb leaping catch at the wall to take away extra bases from Tyler Goeddel and end the top of the eighth.
Rehab road
Velasquez, on the disabled list with a strained right biceps, pitched five innings and allowed a run in a rehab start for Double A Reading on Wednesday night. Velasquez gave up two hits, one of which was a homer, walked one and struck out three. He proved his health with a fastball that topped 97 mph (see story).
Fixing Nola
Pitching coach Bob McClure talked about Aaron Nola’s recent struggles and what needs to be done to get him back on track (see story).
Up next
The series concludes Thursday afternoon at 1:10 p.m. Jerad Eickhoff (4-9, 3.49) opposes Ricky Nolasco (3-4, 4.91).

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