The Tigers take the lead in the top of the first as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Miguel Cabrera hits an RBI ground out, 6-3, knocking in Ian Kinsler, who had just tripled, as the Tigers take a 1-0 lead. That would hold up as the final score as Cliff Lee and the Phils’ bullpen would only give up nine more hits and a walk in the game, while the Tigers’ pitching staff would keep the Phils’ offense grounded, giving up only two hits, both singles, and three walks in the game.
Cliff Lee (1-2, 2.55) took the lost as he pitched five innings, giving up a run on five hits and a walk, while striking out seven. Phillippe Aumont, Antonio Bastardo, B.J. Rosenberg and Jake Diekman would combine for four scoreless innings, giving up four hits (Aumont (1), Bastardo (1), Rosenberg (2)) between them, while striking out 4 (Aumont (1), Bastardo (1), Diekman (2)). Justin Verlander (2-0, 0.00) got the win as he threw six and a third shutout innings, giving up a hit and a walk, while striking out seven. Phil Coke collected his fourth hold of the spring as he pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a walk, while striking out a batter. Al Alburquerque received his second hold of the spring as he threw a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out two. Blaine Hardy collected his first save of the spring as he threw a scoreless inning, giving up a walk.
The Phils had only two hits in the game, both singles, a two-out single in the first by Chase Utley and a two-out single in the eighth by Wil Nieves. The Phils also had three walks in the game (Ryan Howard, Reid Brignac (2)), while the defense committed two errors (Howard, Cesar Hernandez), had an outfield assist (Clete Thomas), and performed three double plays, while Cliff Lee picked off a runner.
The Phils (9-16-3) will play their last Grapefruit League game tomorrow afternoon against the Blue Jays (13-13). The game will be played at Bright House Field in Clearwater, Florida, and is to start at 1:05 PM EDT. The Phils will send to the mound A.J. Burnett (1-2, 7.53) while the Blue Jays will counter with Drew Hutchison (0-1, 2.79). The Phils will be trying to end their Grapefruit League season on a good note, before heading north for their final two spring training games at Citizens Bank Park with the Pirates.
Two home runs by the Phils supported a fine pitching performance by their ace Roy Halladay as the Phils start off interleague play with a victory over the Rangers, 3-2.
The Rangers took the lead in the first as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, the Rangers perform a double steal as Ian Kinsler strikes out for the inning’s first out, as Mitch Moreland, who had just singled, stole second base, before Elvis Andrus, who had started the game off with a single, then went to third on Moreland’s single, stole home, beating the throw, giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead. The Phils took the lead in the second as, with one man on, and with two men out, Ben Francisco hits a two-run home run, his fifth home run of the season, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had just walked, giving the Phils a 2-1 lead. The Phils then made it a 3-1 lead in the fourth as, with two men out, Ibanez hits a solo home run, his fourth home run of the year. The Rangers cut the Phils’ lead in the eighth as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Moreland hits an RBI ground out, 4-3, scoring Endy Chavez, who had earlier hit a pinch hit double, then went to third on Andrus’ ground out, 4-3, cutting the Phils’ lead to 3-2. That would end up being the final score as Ryan Madson recorded his eighth save of the season as, with one man on base, and with two men out, David Murphy was caught stealing, 2-4, by a good throw to second by Carlos Ruiz.
Roy Halladay (6-3, 2.21) gets the win as he pitched eight innings, giving up two runs on six hits and a walk, while striking out seven. Ryan Madson recorded his eighth save of the year as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. C.J. Wilson (4-3. 3.42) took the lost as he went seven innings, giving up three runs on four hits and two walks, while striking out ten Phils. Dave Bush pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a walk.
The Phils had only four hits last night, a single by Placido Polanco, a single by Carlos Ruiz, a two-run home run by Ben Francisco, knocking in two runs and a solo home run by Raul Ibanez. The offense continues to make a lot of bad outs, although getting two home runs to win the ballgame for the Doc.
The Phils (27-17, 1st NL East) will continue their series with the Rangers (23-22, 1st AL West) later today, which will be televised nationally by Fox. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:10 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound Cliff Lee (2-4, 3.84), who is coming off a lost against the Cardinals on May 16, as he went six and a third innings, giving up three runs on six hits and six walks, while striking out four, in the Phils’ 3-1 lost. Lee will be trying to end his own third-game losing streak, while trying to give the Phils a series win. The Rangers will counter with Colby Lewis (4-4, 3.81), who is coming off a complete game win against the White Sox on May 16, as he gave up just five hits and a walk, while striking out seven, in the Rangers’ 4-0 win. He will be trying to even up the series. The Phils will be trying to win their first series in over a week, while also trying to give Lee his third win of the season.
For the first time in fourteen years, the National League All-Stars defeated the American League All-Stars, securing home field advantage during the World Series (I personally think that is a really rotten idea), 3-1.
Thanks in part to the shadows around home plate, as well as some good pitching and defense by both squads, the game remains a 0-0 tie until the bottom of the fifth, when the American League took a 1-0 lead as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Robinson Cano of the New York Yankees hits a sacrifice fly, scoring from third base Evan Longoria of the Tampa Bay Rays, who had earlier walked, and had reached third on Los Angeles Dodgers Hong-Chih Kuo’s throwing error to first on a grounder hit to the third-base side of the mound by Joe Mauer of the Minnesota Twins, who would end up on second on the play. The National League would take the lead in the seventh as, with the bases loaded via singles by Scott Rolen of the Cincinnati Reds and Matt Holliday of the St. Louis Cardinals, sending Rolen to third base, and a walk to Marlon Byrd of the Chicago Cubs, and with two men out, Brain McCann of the Atlanta Braves hits a bases clearing double, scoring Rolen, Holliday and Byrd, giving the National League a 3-1 lead. The National League would hold on to win as Jonathan Broxton of the Dodgers, after giving up a lead-off single to David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox, struck out swinging Adrian Beltre of the Red Sox for out number one, then on a spectacular play by right fielder Byrd, who threw out Ortiz at second, 9-6 on a ball hit into right field by John Buck of the Toronto Blue Jays, turning a base hit into a force out for the inning’s second out, leaving Buck at first base, and then ended the game by getting Ian Kinsler of the Texas Rangers to fly out to center on one pitch.
Brian McCann of the Braves was named the All-Star Game MVP because of his three-run double, giving the NL all of their runs.
Ubaldo Jimenez of the Colorado Rockies pitched two scoreless innings, giving up two hits and a walk, while striking out a batter. Josh Johnson of the Florida Marlons also pitched two scoreless innings, striking out two batters. Hong-Chih Huo pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up an unearned run on a hit and a walk. Heath Bell of the San Diego Padres pitched a third of an inning, getting out the only man that he would face. Roy Halladay of the Philadelphia Phillies pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up two hits, while striking out a batter. Matt Capps of the Washington Nationals would get the win as he pitched a third of an inning, striking out the only batter that he would face. His All-Star Game record is now 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA. Adam Wainwright of the St. Louis Cardinals collected his first hold as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk, while striking out two. Brian Wilson of the San Francisco Giants also collected his first hold, as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Jonathan Broxton receives his first All-Star Game save as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays pitched two scoreless innings, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. Andy Pettitte of the New York Yankees pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out two. Cliff Lee of the Texas Rangers (nee Seattle Mariners) pitched 1-2-3 inning, striking out a batter. Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits, while striking out two. Jon Lester of the Boston Red Sox received a hold as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Phil Hughes, also of the Yankees, also received a hold before taking the lost as he pitched a third of an inning, giving up two runs on two hits. His All-Star Game record is now 0-1 with a 54.00 ERA. Matt Thornton of the Chicago White Sox committed his first All-Star Game blown save as he pitched a third of an inning, giving up a run on one hit and a walk. Andrew Bailey of the Oakland A’s pitched a third of an inning, giving up a walk, while striking out one. Rafael Soriano, also of the Rays, pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Jose Valverde, also of the Tigers, also pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out the side.
The winning National League team had seven hits in the game, with David Wright of the New York Mets leading with two hits, both singles. Scott Rolen of the Reds, Matt Holliday of the Cardinals, Andre Ethier of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Yadier Molina, also of the Cardinals, and Brian McCann of the Braves, had the other five NL hits, with Rolen, Holliday, Ethier and Molina’s hits being singles, and McCann’s hit being a three-run double. The American League team had six hits in the game, with Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees, Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers, Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers, David Ortiz of the Red Sox, Evan Longoria of the Rays and John Buck of the Blue Jays each having a hit, with Jeter, Cabrera, Hamilton and Ortiz hits being singles, while Longoria and Buck’s hits were doubles. The American League’s run came in on a Robinson Cano of the Yankees sacrifice fly. Ryan Howard, who represented the Phils, along with Halladay, went 0 for 2, with a strikeout.
With the win, the National League ends a thirteen-game losing streak, having not won the summer classic since 1996, where it was played in Philadelphia at the now demolished Veterans Stadium (0-12-1). With the win, the National League winner will host the World Series first for the first time since 2002.
The Phillies have lost their sixth straight series as they waste another good start by Jamie Moyer as they lose to the Rangers, 5-1. The Rangers would take a quick 1-0 lead in the first as Michael Young would hit a RBI ground out, short to first, scoring Ian Kinsler, who has earlier tripled. They would add a second run in the second, as rookie Chris Davis would hit his second career home run, to make it 2-0 Rangers. In the third, the Rangers would increase their lead to 3-0, as Josh Hamilton would single in Young, who has earlier doubled. While Moyer would keep the Rangers off of the scoreboard after that inning, the Rangers’ starter, rookie Eric Hurley, would keep the Phillies’ offense silent, despite some of the batters actually getting some deep counts against him. The Phillies would finally get a run on the board as Ryan Howard would hit a RBI single, scoring Chase Utley, who has earlier doubled, to make it 3-1 Rangers. The Rangers would then put the game away in the eight, as Ramon Vazquez would get an RBI single, scoring Marlon Byrd, who has earlier doubled, to give the Rangers a 4-1 lead. The Rangers would score their final run on a ground out by Young, scoring Max Ramirez, who has earlier been hit by the pitch. C.J. Wilson would then come in the ninth for a quick 1-2-3 inning to end the ballgame.
Jamie Moyer would take the lost in spite of keeping the Phillies in the game, as he goes five and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on seven hits and striking out six batters. His record is now 7-6 with a 4.13 ERA. Ryan Madson would pitch two and one third innings, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Eric Hurley would get his first career victory, as he would also go five and two-thirds innings, giving up only one earned run on five hits. His record is now 1-1 with a ERA of 3.57. Jamey Wright, Eddie Guardado and C.J. Wilson would combine for three and one third innings of hitless ball.
The Phillies’ offense, after a short revival, would go back to sleep, in spite of an early attempt to stay patient inside the batter’s box against the rookie Hurley. Gary Matthews, the ex-Phil, and a present-day Phillies’ Announcer, would offer one of the reasons for the batters’ present slump. The players are presently hitting the ball with the end of the bat, instead of the bat’s sweet spot, near the middle, which is leading to weak outs. Maybe, maybe not. What I do know is that it is really starting to get on my nerves that the batters’ are not doing anything to help correct the problem. Sounds to me like Charlie Manuel may need to take these guys behind close doors and read them the riot act to get them thinking about what they are doing wrong. Well, one can only hope, right? *Sigh*
The Phillies (44-39) have finally finished their involvement in interleague play, with a 4-11 record, losing all five series. They will now have the day off, which they will hopefully use to get their heads screwed back on before they begin a three games series with the Braves in Hot-lanta, and then come home for a four games Independence Day weekend series with the Mets.
With the lost, the Phillies’ lead in the East drop down once again to one full game as the Marlins defeat the Diamondbacks. The Mets are now back in third place, trailing the floundering Phillies by three games as they defeat the Yankees. The Braves now trail the Phillies by four games as they lose to the Blue Jays in Toronto. The Phillies will now try to regroup and get back on the winning track.
The Phillies hang on to give Cole Hamels his eighth win of the season, as the bats decided to wake up to defeat the Rangers, 8-6. It wouldn’t look like the Phillies would actually win the game at first as Michael Young would go deep on Hamels in the first inning, hitting his seventh home run of the year, knocking in Ian Kinsler, who has earlier singled, to give the Rangers a quick 2-0 lead. But then the Phillies would for the next two innings erupt on their former teammate Vicente Padilla for six runs. It would start in the second inning, when, with one out, Ryan Howard would get on base with a walk. Greg Dobbs and Pedro Feliz would then both follow with singles, soon loading the bases. Jayson Werth would then follow them with a two-run RBI single, scoring both Howard and Dobbs and sending Feliz to third, tying the score at two. Then, with Chris Coste batting, Padilla would uncork a wild pitch, scoring Feliz, and giving the Phillies a 3-2 lead. The Phillies would then add on to their lead in the third, when, once again with one out, Chase Utley would hit his National League home run lead tying twenty-third home run of the year, a solo shot, giving the Phillies a 4-2 lead. Two batters later, with Pat Burrell on first base via a walk, Howard would hit his twentieth home run of the year, a two-run shot, scoring Burrell, to make it 6-2 Phillies. The Rangers would try to come back in the fifth, when, with one out, and a runner on first, Jarrod Saltalamacchia would hit a RBI double, scoring Brandon Boggs, who has earlier reached base on a Utley’s throwing error after a force out, moving to second base on the error, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 6-3. One out later Saltalamacchia would score on a RBI single by Kinster, to make it 6-4 Phillies. The Phillies would get a run back in the sixth when Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI triple, scoring Coste, who has earlier reached base on a single, to give the Phillies a 7-4 lead. Rollins would then be thrown out at the plate, from Josh Hamilton to Kinsler to Saltalamacchia, when he tried to turn his triple into an inside the park home run, thus ending the inning. The Phillies would add one more run in the seventh, when Utley would hit a RBI double, scoring Shane Victorino, who has gotten on base with a lead off bunt single, making it an 8-4 Phillies’ lead. The Rangers would cut the Phillies’ lead in the eighth, when with Chad Durbin pitching in relief of Hamels, with two men out and the bases loaded, he would give up an RBI single to Max Ramirez, scoring Josh Hamilton, who has reached base earlier on a single, making it 8-5 Phils. Durbin would then be replaced by J.C. Romero. He would shortly walk Boggs, forcing in Milton Bradley, who has earlier singled, to make it an 8-6 Phillies’ lead. He would then buckle under and strike out Saltalamacchia to end the threat. Then in the ninth, Brad Lidge would come in to pitch, and later, with two men on and one out, he would strike out both Hamilton and Bradley to end the game and record his nineteenth save in nineteen tries.
Cole Hamels would get the win, going seven innings, giving up four earned runs on six hits and striking out eight. His record is now 8-5 with an ERA of 3.38. Chad Durbin would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on four hits. J.C. Romero would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits, walking a batter and striking out a batter. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, recording his nineteenth save, as he gave up no runs on two hits. Vicente Padilla would get the lost while getting hammered by the Phils, pitching six innings as he gives up seven earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 10-4 with an ERA of 4.13. Joaquin Benoit would pitch two innings of relief, giving up an earned run on two hits. Luis Mendoza would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit.
The bats, at least for this game, seems to have woken up, knocking in eight runs, although the batters are still going after early pitches or pitches way out of the strike zone. Utley is once more on a tear since breaking his 0 for several days ago, but is still taking the collar with men in scoring position. Hopefully this will be the precursor of a resurfacing of the Phillies’ dangerous offense.
The Phillies (44-38) will face the Rangers (41-41, 3rd American League West) for the rubber match of their weekend series. The game will be played at Rangers Park in Arlington, and will start at 6:05 pm Eastern (5:05 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be the veteran Jamie Moyer (7-5, 4.09), who is coming off a hard lost against the A’s on June 24, where he would pitch well until the seventh inning, going six and two-third innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits, in the Phillies’ 5-2 lost. Career wise, he is 4-5 with a 5.50 ERA in thirteen starts at Rangers Park. Like Cole Hamels on Saturday, he will be trying for his eighth victory of the year while hoping that he can help lead the Phils to their first series victory since their sweep of the Braves at Atlanta. He will be opposed by rookie starter Eric Hurley (0-1, 4.24), who is coming off his first career start at the hand of the Astros on June 24, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits, in the Rangers’ 4-3 lost. In three career starts, he has a lost and two no-decisions. He will be trying for his first career win while hoping that the Phillies’ bats have not come back from the dead.
The Phillies’ lead are now back to two, four and four games ahead of the Marlins, the Braves and the Mets respectively, who have all lost their games. The Phillies will conclude interleague play tomorrow night, before having an off-day on Monday, before starting a three games series with the Atlanta Braves in Hot-lanta, hoping to face the Braves with a reignited offense.
The Phillies have now lost two games in a row as Brett Myers pitches himself out of the starting rotation after being unable to get anyone out in the bottom of the third inning as the Phillies lose to the lowly Rangers, 8-7. The Rangers would take the lead in the first as Ian Kinsler hits a solo home run off of Myers’ second pitch, his thirteenth home run of the season, to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead. Myers would seem to have settle down after that, while the Phillies were able to score some runs off of Rangers’ starter, Kason Gabber, in the top of the third. The inning would begin with Gabber being unable to find the strike zone, as he walks Eric Bruntlett. Jayson Werth would then get on base via a fielding error by Gabber, which would send Bruntlett to second base. Chase Utley would then get the second walk of the inning, loading the bases. Jimmy Rollins then follows with a ground out, shortstop to first, which would score Bruntlett, tying the ballgame at one apiece, while moving both Werth and Utley up a base. Pat Burrell is then intentionally walked by Gabber to reload the bases for him to face Ryan Howard. Howard would go down swinging for out number two. Pedro Feliz would then pick him out by hitting a grand slammer off of Gabber, his ninth home run of the year, scoring Werth, Utley and Burrell, while giving the Phillies what should have been a lights out 5-1 lead. The Phillies’ inning would then end with Shane Victorino grounding out. After being given such a big lead, most pitchers would then buckle down and go after the hitters. But that did not happen with Brett “I don’t like leads” Myers, as he would proceed to have a melt down on the mound in the bottom half of the third. Kinsler would greet him with a double, soon to be followed by an infield single for Michael Young. Josh Hamilton would then get an infield single off of Myers’ glove, loading the bases, with nobody out. Myers would then proceed to walk Milton Bradley, scoring Kinsler, and cutting the Phils’ lead down to 5-2. A second straight walk to David Murphy, which would score Hamilton with the Rangers’ third run of the night, would be enough for Charlie Manuel to watch as he comes out to replace a struggling Myers with Clay Condrey, and leave the bases loaded, as the Phillies now lead 5-3. Condrey would get Marlon Byrd to ground into a 5-4-3 double play to get two quick outs, while Hamilton scores on the play, to cut the lead down to 5-4 Phillies, with a runner on third, giving the Phils a chance to get out of the inning with the lead. But it was not to be, as Condrey would give up a two-run home run to rookie Chris Davis, the first home run of his career, to give the lead back to the Rangers, 6-5. The inning would finally end with Jarrod Saltalamacchia lining out to left. In the fourth, the Phillies would tie the game, as Chris Coste hits a lead off home run, his seventh of the year. The Rangers would retake the lead in the fifth, when, with one out, Bradley would hit a home run off of the foul pole for his sixteenth home run of the year. At this point, both teams’ bullpens would keep the game close until the bottom of the eighth, when, with Rudy Seanez pitching in relief of J.C. Romero, he would give up a RBI sacrifice fly to Hamilton, scoring Kinsler, who has earlier walked, and has moved to third on Young’s double, giving the Rangers an 8-6 lead. That would be the different, as, with the Rangers’ closer C.J. Wilson pitching in the ninth, he would give up a solo home run to Werth, leading off the inning, to make it an 8-7 Rangers’ lead. After getting the next two Phils’ batters out, Wilson would give up a double to Burrell and then a single to Howard, which moved pinch runner Geoff Jenkins to third, who was held there by the third base coach, instead of taking a chance of sending him home, since the ball has rolled off of shortstop Young’s glove, to tie the game. Instead, Wilson would finally end the game by getting Greg Dobbs to ground out, recording his seventeenth save of the year.
Brett Myers gets a no-decision as he self-destructs on the mound after pitching only two innings plus five batters, giving up five earned runs on five hits and walking two batters, which would end up being costly. This performance would appear to have finally taken Myers out of the starting rotation as Manuel has finally lost his patience with him. The questions now are, what are the Phillies going to do with Myers and how will this affect both the rotation and the bullpen? Clay Condrey would take the lost as he pitches two and two-thirds innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits. His record is now 1-1 with a ERA of 4.36. Ryan Madson would go an inning and a third, giving up only one hit. J.C. Romero woud follow him with a scoreless, hitting inning. Rudy Seanez would pitch an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. Kason Gabbard would also pitch a no-decision, as he pitches only three and a third inning, giving up six runs, only one of which would be earned, on only four hits. Josh Rupe would get the win as he goes two and a third innings, giving up no runs on no hits. His record is now 3-1 with a 3.43 ERA. Frank Francisco would pitch a scoreless, hitless inning and a third. Eddie Guardado would pitch a hittless, scoreless inning as well. C.J. Wilson would pitch the ninth, giving up a run on three hits, recording his seventeenth save of the year.
The Phillies’ offense, inspite of actually scoring some runs, is still mired in its collective slump, as almost all of their runs would come in via the long ball, as the batters are still swinging at the pitcher’s junk, thus getting themselves out. To this problem is now added the confusion that will be caused by Myers’ final meltdown on the mound in the third inning after being given a four run lead thanks to Feliz’s earlier grand slam. No one at this point knows what is going on inside Myers’ head, as Manuel will now have to decide who to use in place of Myers for his upcoming start against the Braves in Atlanta next week, as well as for him to determine what to do now with both the rotation and the bullpen in general since it is obvious that unless the Phillies can bring up someone from within their farm system, the replacement starter will have to come from the bullpen (probably Chad Durbin), and no one knows if Myers will be working from within the bullpen, and how that will affect the rest of the National League leading bullpen. Thank you Brett Myers for creating this situation. I hope that you are proud of yourself.
The final interleague series between the Phillies (43-38) and the Rangers (41-40, 3rd American League West) will continue in Arlington, at the Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The game will begin at 8:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Central). The Phillies will be sending to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (7-5, 3.27) to end their present slide. He is coming off a recent lost against the Angels on June 22, as he would pitch seven innings, giving up only three earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 3-2 lost. He will be trying once again for his eighth victory while trying to avoid getting hit in this hitters’ friendly park. He will be counter by former-Phil Vicente Padilla (10-3, 3.74), who is coming off a win against the Nationals on June 22, as he pitched seven innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits, in the Rangers’ 5-3 win. This will be his first start against his former team. He will be trying to defeat his former ballclub, while hoping that last night’s game was not a possible precurser to a Phillies’ batting resurgence.
With the lost, the Phillies’ lead drop to a game over the Marlins as the fish defeated the Diamondbacks. The Braves are now trailing the Phillies by three game, back in a tie for third place, as they defeated the Blue Jays. The Mets are also three games behind the Phillies, as they spilt their doubleheader with the Yankees, dropping the night cap at Shea Stadium. The Phillies will once again try to break out of their collective team hitting slump and try to put some distance between them and the rest of the East before their day off on Monday.