Phils slide continues; Howard slides onto the bench

That gurgling sound you hear is not the Cicadas being drowned out by humidity.

It's the Phillies continuing to sink in the National League East.

If it's Ju
ne, it's swoon for the Phils, who have now lost six straight and been swept in two consecutive series.

Last night it was again the Nats beating up on Adam Morgan and the Phils, while all the home team could muster was a two-run homer from Tyler Goeddel. The result? Another lopsided 7-2 loss.

But the big news from the Phils likely came a few hours before game time, when manager Pete Mackanin informed slumping slugger Ryan Howard that he would not be in the lineup for a few days as Tommy Joseph gets the chance to take over the first-base job.

Howard is hitting .154 this season, with eight homers and 19 RBI. The Phils owe him $26 million for this season, and if they want to buy him out at the end of the year, that will set them back another $10 million.

Howard doesn't like the move to the bench, but he understands it. He is vowing not to quit.

In the meantime, Joseph went 0-for-4 last night.

With last night's loss, the Phils slipped one game under .500.

This does not look good.

Columnist Jack McCaffery offers his thoughts on the Howard saga.

Then again, there is some good baseball news today, but you'll likely only find it in our pages.

Radnor High won the District One AAA baseball title with a 3-0 blanking of Upper Moreland. Bob Grotz was there and has all the details.