After finishing the 2015 season as the worst team in baseball, the Philadelphia Phillies kicked off the 2016 season with a 6-2 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. Philadelphia was up 2-1 entering the eighth inning until the bullpen imploded, walking three batters and surrendering five runs. While the loss extends the team’s Opening Day losing streak to four, there is plenty to take away from the game.
The Good: Jeremy Hellickson
In his first career Opening Day start, Hellickson frustrated Reds batters, tossing six innings and allowing just three hits and an unearned run while striking out six. Hellickson, who was acquired from the Diamondbacks, allowed all three hits to Zach Cozart.
The Bad: The offense
Freddy Galvis plated two runs with a home run in the second inning, but the Phillies failed to record a hit in the final four innings and went down in order three times in that span. Overall, the Phillies went 0-5 with runners in scoring position.
The Ugly: The bullpen
With the Phillies off yesterday and tomorrow, Manager Pete Mackanin pulled Hellickson after just 79 pitches in order to give the bullpen some work. The results were disastorous, aside from Jeanmar Gomez. David Hernandez took the loss after allowing three runs off of two walks and a hit. He failed to record a single out. James Russell failed to stop the bleeding, allowing two more runs off one hit and a walk in just one-third of an inning. Hernandez, who has been mentioned as a possible closer, will need to bounce back if he wants to re-enter that conversation.