The Phillies’ bullpen is currently undergoing some problems. So is Nick Pivetta.
Their No. 2 starter has gone 0-3 in the month of June, after allowing 13 runs in 14 innings (8.36 ERA) and giving up six runs in five innings in a 7-2 loss to the Rockies last night.
Pivetta’s struggles started early. He allowed two singles to the first two batters he faced, followed by a Nolan Arenado sac fly.
The fourth inning was the crusher, in which he allowed five runs. After walking Arenado and giving up a bunt single to Carlos Gonzalez, who beat the shift, Trevor Story hit a double to right field that scored Arenado. After a mound visit, Pivetta gave up an RBI single to Gerardo Parra and a two-run homer to Ian Desmond. Tom Murphy followed with a single before Pivetta got three straight outs. IN total, he allowed the first six batters to reach base, five of them via hits.
When the Phillies were riding the wave of promise earlier in May, Pivetta was one of their bright spots, but the team’s recent struggles have coincided with Pivetta’s regression.
Also struggling is the offense. Jorge Alfaro and Jesmuel Valentin hit two-out homers for the Phils. Valentin hit his first career dinger, but it wasn’t close to enough.
Despite the team’s struggles this month, GM Matt Klentak isn’t worried about rookie manager Gabe Kapler.
“Anytime a first-year manager is hired, there is a reasonable expectation that there is going to be a learning curve, and Kap was surely tested early in that first week of games, in a pretty high-profile way,” Klentak told PhillyVoice. “The thing that I like about Kap that makes him unique is his willingness to ask questions, and his willingness to make adjustments.
“He is incredibly hard working and he’s willing to admit that he was wrong, and make adjustments for the good of the team. Already, in just a few short months, we’ve seen some pretty impressive adjustments made by him, made by our coaches and made by our players. We’ve had four or five punch-in-the-gut losses this year and every single time, we responded the next day, or responded by winning four out of five games. We’ve not let that affect us, and I think that is the sign of a confident team that believes in itself and they’re not going to get too down.
“Believe me, I watch the games, and I ride the emotions, along with the fans. But these guys believe in themselves. Their manager believes in them, their coaches believe in them, and these guys believe in themselves. The effort level, from one through 25, has been strong through spring training.”
Vince Velasquez takes the mound in the rubber match this afternoon at 1:05 PM on NBC 10. There’s nothing like summer day games during the work week.
The Eagles continued with day two of mandatory minicamp. Today is the last day of minicamp, and their Super Bowl ring ceremony takes place later tonight. Because the Eagles won the Super Bowl, they get rings.
Let’s start with the minicamp stuff first. The quarterback that had the best day was…Nate Sudfeld? Nick Foles threw two picks and Carson Wentz is still rehabbing.
Next up for Wentz will be live contact. When that happens we don’t know.
“I think the biggest thing right now is just keep pushing along until I’m cleared,” Wentz said Wednesday after a minicamp session. “There’s little benchmarks along the way, but there’s nothing huge. As you see out here, I’m doing quite a bit. The biggest, last hurdle is going to be the contact part.”
Wentz has been active in practices. He doesn’t participate in full-team drills, but when they take place, Wentz doesn’t stand still. He ran on a side field on Tuesday, working on change of direction. Yesterday, he threw passes to injured wide receiver Alshon Jeffery. During individual and seven-on-seven drills, the only indication that Wentz is injured is the brace on his left knee.
“As my man Joel Embiid would say, just keep trusting the process,” Wentz said.
Wentz is getting used to the brace. He believes he’s maintained his mechanics. Even after surgery in January, Wentz would throw from the ground to stay sharp while the team prepared for the playoffs.
Speaking of trusting the process, if the Sixers wanted Wentz to be part of a welcoming committee for LeBron James, he would gladly join.
— John Barchard (@JohnBarchard) June 13, 2018
After the ring ceremony, Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles will have a busy summer.
On the defensive side, 2018 will be a huge year for cornerback Ronald Darby:
“There’s a lot riding on this year,’’ he said. “I’m just going to go out there and have fun. At the end of the day, the Lord makes no mistakes. So I’m just going to go out and play to the best of my ability and let the chips fall where they may. I’m going to go out and play fast, play confident, and just have fun.’’
Inside the locker room, the “You Aren’t Listening” message continues for Malcolm Jenkins and company in the form of new shirts:
— TURRON DAVENPORT (@TDavenport_NFL) June 13, 2018
Now to the rings. Details are being kept very tight, so we won’t know a ton until they’re unveiled. What do the players think they’ll look like?
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) June 13, 2018
GIVE ME MY RING❗️
— Jalen Mills (@greengoblin) June 14, 2018
In other news, the Eagles have named Jerome Reid as their new head athletic trainer. Linebacker Paul Worrilow was also officially placed on season-ending IR, which opens up a roster spot. And there won’t be any joint practices this year during training camp.
Draft workouts continued for the Sixers yesterday with Jevon Carter and Bruce Brown Jr. headlining the workout.
As for the current team, Richaun Holmes and T.J. McConnell officially had their contract options exercised for next season. I hope Holmes gets more minutes next season.
While the Sixers brass told Bryan Colangelo to pass on Markelle Fultz, Colangelo ignored their advice.
And in case you weren’t aware for the past few months, the Sixers are interested in Kawhi Leonard.
How should the Flyers address their weird goaltending situation this offseason?
In other sports news, the United States (and Canada and Mexico but who cares?) will host the World Cup in 2026.
This year’s edition begins this morning at 11 AM with Russia taking on Saudi Arabia. Crossing Broad FC has your World Cup preview.
Legendary Philadelphia sportscaster Al Meltzer passed away at the age of 89.
Body-cam footage of Lenny Dykstra’s arrest was released.
In the news, a tornado may have touched down near Wilkes-Barre yesterday.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and deputy Raj Shah reportedly plan to leave the White House.
Rolls-Royce is cutting 4,600 jobs.