The Philadelphia Phillies began a seven-game road trip with a 5-4 loss to the Colorado Rockies on Friday night.
The Phillies had a 4-2 lead with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh inning but the bullpen could not hold on to it.
The Rockies got a run in the bottom of the seventh then got a two-out homer from Garrett Hampson in the eighth to tie it. The Rockies won it in the bottom of the ninth on a homer by Raimel Tapia on Hector Neris.
Here’s three takeaways:
Coonrod & Neris blow it
Reliever Sam Coonrod got two huge outs with runners on the corners in the bottom of the seventh to preserve a one-run lead. He struck out Trevor Story then got Charlie Blackmon on a foul pop out to Alec Bohm. The Phillies’ third baseman went to the seats and made the grab before it hit the protective netting.
Coonrod’s success ran out in the eighth when he gave up the game-tying homer to Hampson on a 2-0 pitch.
The Phillies brought Neris in for the ninth. Neris threw four straight splitters in a row before giving up the walkoff homer to Tapia.
Velasquez’s first start in 2021
Before the game, manager Joe Girardi said he’d be happy if starter Vince Velasquez could go four innings and keep the Phillies in the game. Velasquez did exactly that.
Pressed into making his first start of the season after Matt Moore went into COVID-19 protocol, Velasquez pitched four innings and exited with the score knotted at two.
Velasquez opened the game with three shutout innings and carried a 2-0 lead in the fourth. He allowed a pair of solo homers, one to Trevor Story and one to C.J. Cron, as the Rockies tied the game.
7th inning rally
Rockies starter German Marquez was tough to hit, holding the Phillies to just two runs over six innings. The Phillies went zero-for-eight with runners in scoring position against Marquez and he struck out eight, including Rhys Hoskins three times.
Marquez reached 100 pitches in six innings and was relieved by Yency Almonte in the seventh. The Phillies were certainly happy to see him go.
Roman Quinn, who had entered the game as a defensive replacement in the bottom of the sixth, led off the seventh with a double to right against Almonte then daringly stole third base. Quinn then came home with the tie-breaking run on a sacrifice fly by Andrew McCutchen.
Hoskins, who’d had a tough night against Marquez, then came up and smashed a first pitch slider over the left-center field wall to give the Phillies a 4-2 lead.
Aaron Nola pitches against Rockies right-hander Antonio Senzatela on Saturday night.