Phillies go through series-long slump vs. Crew

Without injured Franco, Philadelphia scores four runs at Miller Park

Phillies go through series-long slump vs. Crew

MILWAUKEE -- The Phillies and Brewers entered their weekend series in similar situations -- well out of the postseason race and looking toward the future.

Over their three days in Milwaukee, the Phillies couldn't solve the three of the young pitchers around whom the Brewers are centering their rebuild. Taylor Jungmann followed the path Wily Peralta and Jimmy Nelson blazed in the first two games of the series by holding Philadelphia scoreless over 6 1/3 innings in the Phils' 6-1 loss on Sunday.

Playing the series without injured third baseman Maikel Franco, the Phillies left Miller Park having scored just four runs in three games, mostly due to going 3-for-28 with runners in scoring position.

"In this series, we faced some pretty good pitchers," Phillies interim manager Pete Mackanin said. "We only scored four runs in the series. That was basically the whole story of the series."

Despite collecting six hits against Peralta on Friday, the Phillies couldn't scratch a run across over seven innings. The offense squandered numerous scoring chances Saturday against Nelson, who limited the Phillies to two runs in 6 2/3 innings.

The Phillies didn't put up much of a fight offensively against Jungmann on Sunday. The rookie right-hander struck out a career-high nine batters -- including seven of the first nine hitters he faced.

"You don't see many curveballs consistently like that," Mackanin said. "Guys have good curveballs, but they don't throw them that often. He had us fishing for it all day long.

"He had our guys looking for the curveball and sneaking fastballs by them. When we were looking for the fastball, he'd drop a hammer. I have to give him a lot of credit. I thought he pitched very well."

After going 3-for-23 with runners in scoring position over the first two games of the series, the Phillies were hitless in five at-bats with RISP on Sunday.

"That's the name of the game," first baseman Ryan Howard said. "Those guys were able to capitalize when they had runners in scoring position and we weren't. That's basically what the game comes down to -- being able to capitalize and take advantage of situations when you can."

The Phillies threatened to break out of their offensive slump in the ninth inning by bringing the tying run to the on-deck circle.

Blanco's solo home run

Gregor Blanco hit a one-out solo home run off left-hander Neal Cotts, while Ruiz and pinch-hitter Jeff Francoeur reached on two-out singles. After Cotts walked Darin Ruf to load the bases, Brewers manager Craig Counsell turned to closer Francisco Rodriguez.

Hernandez fouled off a pair of 1-2 pitches from Rodriguez before bouncing into a fielder's choice to end the game.

After beginning their nine-game road trip with a sweep of the Padres, the Phillies returned to Philadelphia unable to solve the last-place Brewers.

"The series we played here is not us," Mackanin said. "We're not this team. You go through peaks and valleys during the season. I think this is one of those valleys."

Andrew Gruman is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.