Phillies remove Hector Neris from closer's role

ATLANTA (AP) Hector Neris is out as the Philadelphia Phillies' closer.

Manager Pete Mackanin says Neris needs to work on his splitter and Pat Neshek will take over in the ninth inning, at least on an interim basis.

Neris was pulled after giving up two hits in the ninth inning of Tuesday night's 3-1 win over the Braves. Neshek recorded the final two outs for his first save of the season.

Neris has a 3.42 ERA and has been successful in five of six saves chances. His ERA is 5.87 when pitching in the ninth.

Mackanin says he wants to get Neris back in form because, in his words, ''he was unhittable last year.''

Jeanmar Gomez and Joaquin Benoit, on the disabled list with a left knee strain, also have saves this season.


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