|Phillies look to finish off sweep of Brewers|
The Philadelphia Phillies are feeling good about recent developments and a hot streak that has ascended them to a season-high 10 games over .500.
The Phillies will feel even better about things Sunday afternoon if they can complete the three-game sweep of the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
The Phillies improved to 31-21 Saturday afternoon by pounding out 12 hits and hitting four homers to support eight strong innings from Jake Arrieta in a 7-2 win. They have scored 22 runs during a three-game winning streak, and since losing three of four at home to Milwaukee last week, the Phillies are 7-2 in their last nine games.
"We're rolling, and we feel good about where we're at," Arrieta said. "I think we just showed the rest of baseball that we're one of the best teams, and we deserve to be in that category."
Philadelphia's ascent is occurring even as Bryce Harper is hitting .230 after going 0-for-4 Saturday. Cesar Hernandez homered and had an RBI single Saturday and is hitting .363 (29-for-80) this month. Rhys Hoskins homered for the second straight day, collected three hits and is 7-for-14 in his last four games.
Another hot hitter for the Phillies is former Brewers shortstop Jean Segura. Segura is hitting .343 (23-for-67) during his 16-game hitting streak, which is the longest active streak in the majors and one shy of his career high set in 2017.
"I think you're seeing some of the relationships that are being built and the chemistry that is among all of us, and it's starting to click," Hoskins said.
Milwaukee was a season-high eight games over .500 after leaving Philadelphia with three wins but has lost five of its last seven games. The Brewers have been held to three runs or less four times and allowed 45 runs in this stretch.
Mike Moustakas homered Saturday, while Christian Yelich hit his 20th homer in Friday's series opening 6-4 loss. Yelich has been slowed by two back injuries since the end of April.
"We're definitely talking about things to do, things to prevent it," Yelich told reporters. "The training staff's great, and we've come up with a pretty good plan, so we're just going to roll with it and do our best to stay on top of it."
The Brewers will also hope to experience better encounters with umpires after Ryan Braun and manager Craig Counsell were ejected by plate umpire Mike Estabrook for arguing balls and strikes. Lorenzo Cain was not ejected but took issue with a pair of called strikes in his eighth-inning at-bat when the Brewers trailed by two.
Milwaukee will hope Brandon Woodruff (6-1, 3.51 ERA)) can help the team avoid its fifth losing streak of at least three games. Woodruff is 5-0 with a 2.61 ERA in his last seven starts and Milwaukee is 8-2 in his starts.
Woodruff last pitched a week ago in a 10-inning win at Atlanta when he allowed two runs and five hits in a career-high eight innings.
Woodruff has yet to allow an earned run in two career starts against Philadelphia. He faced the Phillies on May 14 and allowed one hit in six scoreless innings in a 6-1 victory.
Zach Eflin (5-4, 2.76) is winless in his last two starts since throwing a four-hitter at Kansas City on May 11. He last pitched Tuesday in 3-2 loss to the Chicago Cubs and allowed one run on six hits in six innings in a no-decision.
Eflin is facing the Brewers for the second time in three starts. He was tagged for four runs and seven hits in five innings in an 11-3 loss on May 16.
Eflin is 2-1 with a 3.94 ERA in three career starts against Milwaukee.
--Field Level Media