The stadium with arguably the best views in baseball has never been kind to the Phillies. Throughout PNC Park’s 13-year history, the Phillies have been excellent and they have been poor. It hasn’t mattered. They came into the game 14-24 at the stadium. The bad luck halted in the Phils’ 3-1 win Tuesday. For most of the time, the Phillies have been the better team, as the Pirates have surged to success just in the last three seasons. This year’s team might be its best in two decades. Even with the loss, the Pirates (51-31) still hold the best record in baseball. “We used to struggle here when I was in Cleveland,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said before the game. “They would beat us here all the time. If I had an answer, I’d give it to you. It seems like we never can pull away, get a lead. They stay right with us and find a way to win.” Tuesday, they claimed a lead. And, in a rare feat, the bullpen did its job. In a curious move, Manuel opted for Justin De Fratus in a high-pressure, late-game situation with the game on the line instead of expensive closer Jonathan Papelbon. De Fratus entered with two outs in the eighth, the bases loaded thanks to another near choke job from the Phillies’ faulty bullpen, which used six relievers.
Phillies slide by Pirates 3-1
Courier-Post | Jul 3