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Friday, May 28, 2010
The Closer: Phillie Phutility

By ESPN Stats & Info

What has happened to the Phillies bats??

Philadelphia shut out for the 4th time in their last 5 games on Thursday. The Mets sweep of the Phillies marks the 1st time in MLB history a team that reached the World Series went scoreless in a series of 3 games or more the following season. The last time the Phillies were shut out in each game of a series of 3 games or more was back in 1979 when they fell victim to the Expos. We break down other notes on Philadelphia's struggles in this edition of The Closer.

Not Always Sunny in Philadelphia

- Phillies have not scored in 27 innings
- Phillies have scored 3 runs in the last 47 innings
- Phillies have not scored vs opponent's starting pitcher in 35 innings
- Phillies have been shut out 5 times this season, 7 all last season


According to the Elias Sports Bureau:

Only two other teams in major-league history, dating back to 1876 swept three or more games from a first-place team without allowing any runs: the Orioles over the Red Sox in 1974 and the Washington Senators over the Philadelphia A's in 1913.


Why Mike Pelfrey won:

- Threw his splitter a season-high 23 times (21 out of the strike zone) and had good results: hitters were 0-5 (2 K) and missed 56 percent of swings
- Tied season-high with 12 swinging strikes
- Threw 65 percent of pitches on the outer third of the plate, inducing hitters to go 1-13 with all five of his strikeouts


Why Johnny Cueto won:

- Season-high 7 K with the fastball, which he threw 69 percent of the time (last three starts: 16 of 21 K have been on fastballs)
- Finished off 13 of 15 batters that reached two strikes (87 percent; MLB avg: 72)
- Hitters chased season-high 50 percent of offspeed pitches out of the strike zone (previous high: 36 percent)