Alec Bohm, the runner-up for the National League Rookie of the Year award last season, had another difficult day in the field and at the plate Sunday during the Phillies’ 6-2 loss to Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field.
In addition to going hitless in three at-bats with a walk, the Phillies third baseman also over ran a foul pop up that should have been the first out of the second inning. He was inexplicably not charged with an error, but the mistake still proved costly as it gave Austin Meadows extra life and the Rays’ left fielder cashed in by drawing a walk, which eventually led to a two-out home run by Mike Zunino that put the Rays in front to stay.
“I think he was on a dead sprint,” Phillies manager Joe Girardi said. “This is a tough place to catch popups if you’re not here a lot and he just overran it probably because you’re in a shift and you’re so far away and he’s in a dead sprint. It’s a play that he’s capable of making, but he didn’t make it.”
After the second inning ended, the television cameras caught Phillies veteran shortstop Didi Gregorius in the dugout with his arm around Bohm as the two engaged in a lengthy conversation.
“His teammates obviously know he’s frustrated,” Girardi said. “They’re trying to help him out and probably trying to share some of their experiences that they’ve gone through.”
Bohm’s 0-for-3 performance dropped his average to .205 for the season and included a second-inning at-bat that ended with him grounding into a double play for the 12th time this season and the 10th time this month. He leads the majors in that dubious department.
Bohm has just three hits (all singles) in his last 33 at-bats and one RBI in his last 10 games. Girardi said he has no concerns about Bohm physically, but he knows he cannot be in a good place mentally.
“It has been extremely frustrating for him,” the manager said. “It’s part of this game. There’s a ton of failure in this game. I have seen Hall of Famers have bad halves and you have to learn to deal with it and you have to learn to fight through it. No one is ever going to feel sorry for you in this game.”
Travis Jankowski joins Phillies
The Phillies filled Roman Quinn’s spot on the roster ahead of Sunday’s series finale against the by bringing up veteran outfielder Travis Jankowski from triple-A Lehigh Valley. Jankowski, who turns 30 in two weeks, has spent parts of six seasons in the big leagues -- five with the San Diego Padres and last year with the Cincinnati Reds.
He is a career. 238 hitter with 29 doubles, 7 triples, and 8 home runs. He is not as fast as Quinn, but he does have the ability to run as evidenced by his 64 career stolen bases, including 30 with the Padres in 2016.
In 19 games with the IronPigs this season, Jankowski hit .304 with a .451 on-base percentage and .826 OPS. He had four doubles, six RBIs and had walked 15 times in 72 plate appearances. A spot on the 40-man roster was created for Jankowski when the Phillies placed Quinn on the 60-day injured list.
The Phillies chose Jankowski ahead of several players on the 40-man roster, including Mickey Moniak and Scott Kingery.
“His ability to play center field is probably the biggest thing and he was probably swinging the bat the best down there,” Girardi said. “We envision Mickey more as a corner outfielder than a center fielder. Travis is a true center fielder and he has been swinging the bat well.”
Quinn was placed on the 60-day injured list and was likely lost for the season Saturday when he suffered what the Phillies described as an injury to his left Achilles tendon.
Andrew McCutchen went 1-for-4 with a single after being dropped to sixth in the batting order. “He has been scuffling,” Girardi said. McCutchen is 4-for-36 in his last nine games. “I’m trying to get Cutch going, too.” ... The Phillies are 6-16 against the state of Florida the last two seasons. They are 6-11 against Miami and 0-5 against Tampa Bay. ... The Phillies open a three-game series at Cincinnati Monday at 2:10 p.m. with Vince Velasquez (2-0, 2.95 ERA) scheduled to oppose left-hander Wade Miley (4-4, 3.50 ERA).