25 Jun

papelbon in a funk

Maybe he has lost his edge because of the trade rumors. Maybe it’s his college team, Mississippi State, making a deep run at the College World Series that has distracted Philadelphia closer Jonathan Papelbon. Probably not — but something’s going on. Papelbon has suffered four blown saves in his last five opportunities, including Monday night’s game, when the Phillies blew a 3-0 lead in the ninth inning and fell to San Diego 4-3 in 10. Papelbon gave up a hit that scored two inherited runners, and the tying run scored on a passed ball. “(Stuff) happens,” Papelbon told mlb.com. “He’s in a little funk,” Phils manager Charlie Manuel said. Meridian Community College alum Cliff Lee, who worked into the ninth, got the hard-luck no-decision on Monday. Papelbon, who has picked up two wins during his “funk,” has seen his ERA rise to 2.12. Over the last five appearances, he has yielded seven hits, two walks and three earned runs. He blew only four saves in all of 2012. P.S. Cleveland has called up former Picayune High standout T.J. House. The left-hander, who has been scuffling (1-7, 5.37 ERA) as a starter at Triple-A Columbus, is expected to work in relief for the Indians, who are in second place in the American League Central. House, a 16th-round pick in 2009, has a 4.05 career ERA in the minors and pitched very well in the 2012 Arizona Fall League.

Mike Christensen

Mike Christensen

A long-time sports fan and 30-year newspaper veteran muses on all things baseball in Mississippi. Contact: mwchristens@gmail.com
Mike Christensen

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