At least it was quick. The Phillies had just four hits Monday night in a shutout loss to the Orioles, a defeat so listless that this September is starting to feel like the last three Septembers. The game was over in 2 hours, 49 minutes, which can be considered warp speed for the Phillies, who entered Monday tied for the longest average nine-inning game at 3:18. If the Phillies are going to collapse again, they can at least make it quick.

The Phillies trail Atlanta by three games in the NL East with 12 games remaining. FanGraphs gives them an 18.3% chance to reach the postseason. How hard will it be to gain three games? If the Braves win just seven of their final 14 games, the Phillies will have to finish the season 9-3.

If you love bullpen games, you’ll love Tuesday night, because each team will use a cast of relievers to piece together nine innings.

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The rundown

The Phillies were unable to find a way vs. the Orioles’ John Means in a costly 2-0 loss to the worst team in baseball.

Our Phillies playoff push roundtable touches on whether Bryce Harper has clinched the MVP and if Joe Girardi’s job is safe.

How the Phillies’ Zack Wheeler reached 200 innings after the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

Important dates

Tonight: Phillies and Orioles both use bullpen games, 7:05 p.m.

Tomorrow: Zack Wheeler faces left-hander Keegan Akin, 7:05 p.m.

Thursday: Aaron Nola opens four-game series vs. the Pirates, 7:05 p.m.

Friday: Kyle Gibson starts against the Pirates, 7:05 p.m.

Saturday: Ranger Suarez faces the Pirates, 4:05 p.m.

Stat of the day

Do you remember Anthony Gose? The former Phillies prospect returned Monday to the big leagues but as a flame-throwing reliever instead of a speedy outfielder.

The Phils traded Gose in July 2010 along with J.A. Happ and Jonathan Villar to Houston for Roy Oswalt. Gose made it to the big leagues in 2012 as an outfielder with Toronto and played 372 games over five seasons.

But in 2017, Gose started to transition to the mound in the minors with Detroit. After five seasons, he’s in a big-league bullpen with Cleveland. Monday, the 31-year-old threw 39 pitches, 21 of which were 99 mph or faster. Gose allowed one run on one hit in 1 2/3 innings against Kansas City.

From the mailbag

Send questions by email or on Twitter @matt_breen.

Question: What happened to Connor Brogdon? Is he coming back? — Stan B. via email

Answer: Thanks, Stan. He’s still on the injured list until at least Thursday, but it does not sound like he’ll be ready that soon. We’ll have a better idea later this week. The Phillies really miss Brogdon on days such as Tuesday, when they’ll need all hands on deck in a bullpen game.