PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Throughout spring training, Charlie Manuel
stressed the importance of a strong start to the Philadelphia
So much for those speeches: The Phillies are 0-4 for the first
time in 19 years.
"We kind of stink," Manuel said. "We got to get better."
The Phillies began 0-4 in 1987, losing twice on the road and
twice at home. They hadn't started with four losses at home since
1977 when they finished 101-61 and won the second of three
consecutive NL East titles.
A poor April last season -- they were 10-14 -- proved costly when
the Phillies finished one game behind NL wild-card winner Houston
and two games behind division winner Atlanta.
"We're in a little funk," Manuel said. "It seems we can't get
going, but we have a much better club than that. We're going to win
some games and we're going to compete."
Brett Tomko pitched six effective innings and the Dodgers took
advantage of sloppy defense on a day they learned closer Eric Gagne
will miss six to eight weeks following surgery to remove a nerve in
his pitching elbow.
"The pitching coach said just to throw your best stuff," Kuo
said. "I felt good and I had good location and a good fastball."
The trio of pitchers retired 15 straight batters before
pinch-hitter David Dellucci hit a two-out double in the ninth.
"It was outstanding," Dodgers manager Grady Little said of his
bullpen. "Kuo gave us what we were looking for and Baez did
Jason Repko started the game with a single against Gavin Floyd,
stole second and scored when Jose Cruz Jr.'s grounder bounced away
from first baseman Ryan Howard for an error. James Loney's two-out
triple into the right-field corner made it 2-0.
The Phillies scored three times in the fourth on a pair of
homers. Pat Burrell went deep to start the inning. Sal Fasano hit a
two-run shot into the upper deck in left-center field to cut the
deficit to 5-3. It was Fasano's first hit for the Phillies.
Floyd (0-1) lasted just 2 2/3 innings, allowing five runs --
three earned -- and six hits. None of Philadelphia's starters -- Jon
Lieber, Brett Myers, Cory Lidle and Floyd -- have pitched more than
five innings, and they have a 9.56 ERA.
"He didn't have command of his fastball, so it was a little
rough for him," Fasano said of Floyd. "It was his first start so
he was a little nervous. The positive was nobody hit the ball real
Baez had 41 saves for Tampa Bay last season, but was acquired in
a trade to be Gagne's setup man.
Dodgers SS Rafael Furcal was scratched from the lineup
because of a bruised right shin. ... Before Fasano homered, his bat
sailed into the stands on a missed swing and glanced off a young
boy sitting behind the Dodgers dugout. The child was not injured.
... Loney's triple and RBI in the first inning both were
career-firsts. ... Tomko pitched on his 33rd birthday.