Mets look to maintain momentum vs. Phillies


If there’s one word to describe the Philadelphia Phillies through 27 games, it’s this: inconsistent.

The Phillies haven’t won consecutive games since April 4-5.

After rallying from a 4-0 deficit to tie the New York Mets on Saturday, the host Phillies fell 5-4 when Michael Conforto hit a solo home run off Hector Neris to open the ninth inning.

Philadelphia will look to win the series in the finale on Sunday night.

“It’s been for a myriad of reasons,” Phillies manager Joe Girardi said of the inconsistency. “We’ve had chances to. We haven’t come through a lot of times in the clutch. Our bullpen got disrupted with missing a couple of guys. At times, it’s been our defense. I believe the talent is in there. We just need to play better.”

The Phillies could play without Bryce Harper (facial injury), J.T. Realmuto (hand) and Jean Segura (quad). Ironically, Harper was ejected in the seventh inning Saturday for arguing a controversial call against Andrew McCutchen for running out of the basepath.

“We’re hopeful,” Girardi said of whether Harper and Realmuto could start Sunday.

Right-hander Zach Eflin (1-1, 3.58 ERA) is coming off a start in which he allowed nine hits and five runs in 6 2/3 innings on the road against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Eflin’s 3-4 with a 5.21 ERA in 11 starts against the Mets in his career.

The Phillies opened the series with a 2-1 win on Friday before dropping a close one Saturday.

“That’s how these division games are,” first baseman Rhys Hoskins said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s April or September. It seems like we always have these dogfight games, especially against the Mets.”

The Mets will attempt to win the series when they send lefty David Peterson (1-3, 5.59) to the mound on Sunday. He’s 1-1 with a 9.00 ERA in three previous career starts against the Phillies.

In Peterson’s last start, he allowed two runs in six innings in a 2-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox. Peterson gave up four hits and two walks and struck out three.

“He had three pitches going on for him today, and his command was solid,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said of Peterson.

The Mets’ injury issues continued to pile up Saturday as Brandon Nimmo left the game in the seventh inning on a 1-2 count with an undetermined injury. Nimmo had been dealing with a hip ailment.

Luis Guillorme already sits on the injured list with a strained right oblique.

“It’s been one day,” Guillorme said. “We know it’s tight right now. It got a lot better from one day to the other. It might stay like this, it might get better. Who knows? It wasn’t going to get better that quick (to not go on the injured list). I’m not saying it’s going to be a long-term thing, but one, two, three days, you don’t know what it is.”

This much is known: This Mets-Phillies rivalry is as strong as ever, no matter who’s playing.

“We’re division rivals. We’re going to see each other a lot of times,” Rojas said.

–Field Level Media

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