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Should the Philadelphia Phillies Be Concerned Following Domínguez's Meltdown?

Philadelphia Phillies' reliever Seranthony Domínguez had a rough outing on Friday. Is it a fluke or cause for concern?

Seranthony Domínguez has been the most consistent arm out of the Philadelphia Phillies' bullpen this season. The fiery right-hander had pitched to a 1.57 ERA in 48 games, including nine saves and 15 holds.

That's why when Domínguez was uncharacteristically charged with five runs on three hits in just 0.2 innings of work on Friday night against the Braves in Atlanta, it was cause for some concern. 

So, let's talk about it.

It was by far the 27-year-old's worst outing of the year, which began with a lead-off walk, followed by a two-run, go-ahead blast from Ronald Acuña Jr. in the eighth inning. The Phillies had held a 2-1 lead up until that point. 

Even after picking up the first out, Domínguez was unable to stop the bleeding, surrendering a double, walk, and single; He picked up just one strike out. Nick Nelson came on to finish out the frame, but allowed his inherited runners to come around and score, thus completing a Braves' six-run inning.

Philadelphia then went on to be swept, and Domínguez didn't appear in the final two games of the three-game set. 

His outing on Sept. 16 is worrisome for a couple reasons. With the Phillies and Braves' series this past weekend being a potential Wild Card round preview, Domínguez being unable to have a shutdown inning against a future postseason opponent is troubling. 

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The month of September is quickly dwindling down, and the Phillies bullpen will need to step it up against tough opponents.

Most importantly, though, he recently returned from the 15-day injured list with right triceps tendinitis. Although his velocity was there, for him to have an outing where he didn't seem to "have it" can cause one to think that maybe he is still dealing with some discomfort.

In fact, many were expecting to see an announcement from the Phillies saying he landed back on the injured list the next day. But luckily, that announcement never came, and it's probably safe to say that it was likely just a bad outing for Domínguez.

Even with his five-run meltdown on Friday, his ERA on the season is still only 2.51. Against teams with a .500 or better winning percentage, the Dominican reliever's ERA sits at a respectable 3.04. 

As the team enters a tough week where they will face the Toronto Blue Jays for two games and the Braves for four at home, it provides Domínguez with the perfect opportunity to return to his dominant form, and once again prove he's more than capable of shutting down formidable opponents.

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