MIAMI (AP) — Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Zach Eflin is 22 and struggling with the inconsistency of youth.
His last start was great. His start Wednesday? Not great.
Eflin gave three runs in the first inning and was chased in the sixth as the Phillies lost the rubber game of the series at Miami, 11-1.
“I was leaving pitches up in the zone,” the right-hander said. “I didn’t do my job. I have to work on being consistent.”
In his previous outing, Eflin (3-4) threw a three-hit shutout at Pittsburgh. This time he allowed seven runs in five-plus innings.
“He just wasn’t the same guy,” manager Pete Mackanin said. “I didn’t like the mix of pitches he used. We were hoping he’d use his curveball a little bit more.”
Martin Prado, who singled twice off Eflin, saw things differently.
“He was not commanding his secondary pitches, and everybody knew that,” Prado said.
Mired in a team batting slump less than 24 hours earlier, the Marlins totaled 16 hits and started fast. J.T. Realmuto led off the first with a double, Martin Prado singled, Christian Yelich hit an RBI groundout, and Giancarlo Stanton followed with a two-run homer, his 22nd.
“It was a fastball away, and he hit it pretty well,” Eflin said with a laugh.
An Orlando native, Eflin had relatives and 20 friends at the game. Despite the drubbing, he was glad they came.
“It’s really cool they were able to see me pitch,” he said.
The Phillies were one out from their second consecutive shutout loss when Cesar Hernandez doubled home a run.
Adam Conley (7-5) pitched around eight hits and three walks to throw 6 2/3 scoreless innings, and even he joined the hit parade. He had his first career sacrifice fly and a run-scoring single for his first two RBIs of the year.
The left-hander improved to 3-0 in five starts this month with an ERA of 1.82. In five career starts against the Phillies, he’s 2-1 with an ERA of 1.42.
Don Kelly, who began the game 1 for 22 this season, went 3 for 5 with two triples, two RBIs and two runs scored. That raised his average from .045 to .148.
Realmuto, Prado and Marcell Ozuna had three hits apiece for the Marlins, who totaled seven extra-base hits and rewarded manager Don Mattingly’s faith. They ended a streak of 24 consecutive scoreless innings Tuesday, and during the slump Mattingly said he wasn’t worried.
“I lie a little bit now and then,” he said with a smile. “Nah, you’re going to have sequences in the season where you’re not going to look good offensively. We know we have talent and guys that are working hard, and we know that’s not going to continue.”
Phillies bench coach Larry Bowa was ejected in fourth inning by home plate umpire Pat Hoberg.
“He was mad at the umpire,” Mackanin said. “When you win, you get giddy. When you lose, you want to hang yourself. You have to stay even keel. At least I have to stay even keel, emotionally. I used to be more emotional, but over time you learn it doesn’t’ do any good. Your fate is in the hands of the players.”
Phillies: OF Peter Bourjos (right shoulder) sat out, and his status is day to day.
Phillies: RHP Aaron Nola (5-9, 4.75) tries for his first victory since June 5 when Philadelphia opens a four-game series at Atlanta against RHP Matt Wisler (4-10, 4.92).
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