That's how long it has been since the Phillies started a season this poorly through 60 games.
A controversial call would perhaps cost the Phillies the game on Saturday against the Reds, as they fell 6-5 to drop to 25-35 on the season. But make no mistake, bad call or not, this team is bad.
Cincinnati would tie the game on a Todd Frazier home run in the bottom of the frame before taking a 4-2 lead in the fourth. Jay Bruce would hit a two-run home run in the fifth to extend the Reds' lead to 6-2, but the Phillies weren't ready to call it quits just yet.
Carlos Ruiz would lead off the sixth inning with a home run, his second of the season, to cut into the Reds' lead.
Things would get interesting from there.
With two outs in the sixth and Marlon Byrd on first, Domonic Brown smacked a double to the gap. Byrd would attempt to score on the play, only to be gunned down at home.
The call would be controversial, however, as it appeared Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco blocked the plate before the ball arrived, a violation of one of the newer and seemingly least understood rules in the MLB.
Umpires have seemingly had no consistency all season with invoking Rule 7.13, which says a catcher may not block the pathway of a runner trying to score unless he has the ball.
Saturday would be no different, as the umpires possibly made a mistake. After the call was upheld upon review, Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg was ejected while seeking an explanation.
The Phillies would not be done, however, as Jimmy Rollins hit a two-run home run in the seventh to pull the Phillies within one. The seventh inning would come to a conclusion all too similar to the sixth inning though, with a Phillies runner being gunned down at home attempting to score from first on a double.
This time it would be Carlos Ruiz trying to score on a Chase Utley double. While this instance was not controversial, as Ruiz was out by a good margin, the Phillies again were stopped by a play at the plate.
In the end, a call by the umpires may have prevented the Phillies from tying this game, as they fell to the Reds 6-5.
Regardless, the best days for this franchise seem to be in a distant past at this point.
By: Kyle Babcock
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