Phillies Notes: Meeting helped Phillies hitters

Grady Sizemore #24 of the Philadelphia Phillies gets his first hit as a Phillie in the third inning against the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on July 11, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
Grady Sizemore #24 of the Philadelphia Phillies gets his first hit as a Phillie in the third inning against the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on July 11, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
Posted: July 14, 2014

After the Phillies dropped to a season-low 14 games under .500 following last Sunday's 6-2 loss in Pittsburgh, the hitters met in Milwaukee to discuss ways to improve.

Since then the Phillies had won five in a row entering Saturday's game at Citizens Bank Park against the Washington Nationals.

Apparently the meeting and the offense's production in those five games are somewhat related.

"We talked about it in a good hitters meeting, a talk in Milwaukee putting things back in perspective, and it's paying off so far," shortstop Jimmy Rollins said late Friday night after he enjoyed the ninth multi-homer game of his career in a 6-2 win over the Nationals.

Before Saturday's game, third baseman Cody Asche offered more information about the meeting.

"It was really beneficial," Asche said "In my opinion it kind of shifted the mentality from 'What I am doing wrong' to 'What I can do to help out the lineup and team,' and I think it was necessary and has paid off."

In the five straight wins, the Phillies scored 31 runs while batting .361 (13 for 36) with runners in scoring position.

Brown out

Domonic Brown was in the posted lineup Saturday but was pulled because of illness.

"A little bit of a fever and some other things going on," manager Ryne Sandberg said.

Brown entered the game as a pinch-hitter and singled to open the seventh inning. He was replaced by pinch- runner Tony Gwynn Jr.

Grady Sizemore, slated to start in center, moved to left but stayed in the leadoff spot. Ben Revere played center and batted eighth.

Zimmermann tests

Nationals righthander Jordan Zimmermann, who left Friday's game after just 31/3 innings with a cramp in his right biceps, had an MRI exam Saturday. The team was awaiting the results.

"He said he was feeling OK, but he was a little sore in his biceps," manager Matt Williams said.

In 2009 Zimmermann underwent Tommy John surgery.

Zimmermann, the only Nationals all-star representative, won't be active for the game and was replaced Saturday by Miami Marlins righthander Henderson Alvarez.

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