Phillies fall to Braves, 5-4, in 12 innings

In the 12th inning with bases loaded and one out, Braves Dan Uggla beats out a double play at first as Phillies Kevin Frandsen comes off the bag, allowing Justin Upton to score the winning run for Atlanta, Saturday, August 3, 2013. RON CORTES / Staff Photographer
In the 12th inning with bases loaded and one out, Braves Dan Uggla beats out a double play at first as Phillies Kevin Frandsen comes off the bag, allowing Justin Upton to score the winning run for Atlanta, Saturday, August 3, 2013. RON CORTES / Staff Photographer
Posted: August 05, 2013

At this stage, admitting that frustration has seeped into the Phillies clubhouse is no revelation. Manager Charlie Manuel insists the team continues to give the effort.

The only thing missing is the result.

The Phillies post-all-star fade from contention continued with Saturday's 5-4 loss in 12 innings to the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park.

The numbers clearly tell the story and it's not one the Phillies expected they would be part of.

This was the Phillies' fourth loss in a row and 12th in the last 13 games.

"Anytime you are losing it will affect the clubhouse," said Saturday's starting pitcher, John Lannan, who lasted just 41/3 innings, allowing four runs, two earned.

Lannan said it's especially difficult when the team is working hard and the result is a big L.

"It [stinks]," Lannan said. "Losing isn't fun."

Manuel seems miffed by the recent results, but he won't throw his players under the proverbial bus.

"We had the effort, we just didn't get it done, and definitely the effort was there," Manuel said. "You watch our dugout, we were definitely into it and everybody was staying around in the dugout and watching."

It wasn't a great view from the Phillies' perspective.

One thing the players insisted is that their confidence hasn't taken a hit.

"No, [it hasn't] because everybody in this clubhouse has won before," said rightfielder Delmon Young. "It comes with the territory."

For the Phillies it's coming with much more frequency. They are now 50-60, a season-high 10 games under .500.

"You take it as a loss and think about it 20-30 minutes and come back tomorrow and try to win a game," Young said.

If anybody is looking for anything positive, it's that the Phillies aren't pointing fingers. Maybe it's because this is a collective effort that has gotten them into this surprising state.

The Phillies are realistic enough to realize losing can have a snowball effect.

"I think you have to have something that stops that," said John Mayberry Jr., whose two-run homer in the second increased the Phillies' lead to 3-0. "It can flip and go back the other way around just as easily and you have to stay mindful of that."

Dan Uggla's fielder's choice RBI in the 12th inning broke the 4-4 deadlock.

Phillies lefthander Jake Diekman walked the bases loaded (one intentional) in the 12th with one out before giving way to Justin De Fratus.

Atlanta then took a 5-4 lead when Uggla just beat out a potential double-play throw, driving in Justin Upton.

Uggla hit a slow roller to short. Jimmy Rollins got the force at second, but Uggla was safe when Chase Utley's relay throw to first pulled first baseman Kevin Frandsen off the bag. Utley had to endure a difficult take-out slide by Paul Janish.

Closer Craig Kimbrel recorded his 33d save but made things interesting.

Carlos Ruiz opened the 12th with a single. After Frandsen struck out, Rollins grounded into a fielder's choice for the second out. He advanced to second on a wild pitch but the game ended when pinch-hitter Laynce Nix struck out.

The Braves cut the lead to 3-1 on Justin Upton's solo blast to left field in the third, his 19th of the season. Atlanta followed with three in the fifth on a two-run Freddie Freeman single and an RBI groundout by Evan Gattis.

Rollins' RBI double in the seventh made it 4-4 but the Phillies' pattern of losing close games continued. Of their last 12 losses, six have been by one or two runs.


Contact Marc Narducci at mnarducci@phillynews.com. Follow on Twitter @sjnard.

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