Phillies fall under .500 with 2d straight loss

Domonic Brown hit his 19th home run in the second inning. He also had a two-run double in the eighth. JEFFREY PHELPS / AP
Domonic Brown hit his 19th home run in the second inning. He also had a two-run double in the eighth. JEFFREY PHELPS / AP
Posted: June 10, 2013

MILWAUKEE - The room was silenced, and not because of another Phillies loss to the National League's worst pitching staff. When word spread through the visitors clubhouse at Miller Park of Erik Kratz's knee injury, a 4-3 loss to the Brewers was secondary.

These Phillies are under .500 again and the goodwill from a five-game winning streak is waning. In two days, Milwaukee's patchwork pitching staff secured two victories. A team's fate swayed over a 30-hour span that ended with Kratz on crutches.

"It's not good," Charlie Manuel said.

Kratz told his manager he felt a "pop" when running to first base in the ninth inning. That served as the final insult in a defeat lacking any shred of energy, with the exception of Domonic Brown. He could not will his team to victory.

The Brewers, a last-place team, asked their bullpen to record all 27 outs Saturday. The relievers did it with relative simplicity. Tom Gorzelanny, making his first start in 686 days, allowed one run in four innings.

Kratz had shined in Carlos Ruiz's absence. He slugged five homers in his last 11 starts. His eight home runs in 2013 rank fifth among all major-league catchers. He stabilized the position.

Head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan met Kratz before he reached the dugout. Kratz struggled to descend the steps. Down two catchers, the Phillies must turn to Humberto Quintero and, likely, Steven Lerud. Ruiz is expected to return from his hamstring injury within the next two weeks.

"Guys going down, that can definitely change a lot of things," Manuel said. "We have to stay in there and get them. That's all. We had some chances and we couldn't take advantage of some of them."

If it wasn't for Brown, who homered again and drove home two more with a double, this would have been uglier. Brown's bid for an all-star selection intensifies with each day.

An entire game was encapsulated by the sixth inning. The Phillies put runners on second and third with no outs when Kevin Frandsen doubled and Jimmy Rollins singled. They did not score.

Delmon Young, recipient of a $100,000 bonus Saturday for his 40th day on the active roster, struck out on three pitches. Brown bounced one to first and Frandsen was nailed at home plate. John Mayberry Jr. hit a feeble grounder to shortstop.

The Brewers broke a 1-1 tie in the bottom half of the inning. Ryan Braun reached on an infield single. Aramis Ramirez slashed one to center and Braun dashed for third. Mayberry fired a strike and Michael Young applied a tag to Braun's leg. Replays appeared to show Braun was out. Third-base umpire John Tumpane ruled otherwise.

Phillies killer Jonathan Lucroy cleared the bases with a two-run double to left. He is 10 for 24 (.416) with two doubles, a triple, and three home runs against the Phillies.

"This game, man, you have to take it day by day," said Kyle Kendrick, who permitted three runs in six innings. "We were playing well at home, then we came here and we've had some tough games."

After Brown doubled in the eighth and represented the tying run, Ryan Howard pinch-hit. Milwaukee did not have its lefty specialist, Mike Gonzalez. It did not matter. Howard checked his swing and tapped one to the pitcher.


Contact Matt Gelb at mgelb@phillynews.com. Follow @magelb on Twitter.

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