The Phillies have completed their sweep of the last place Nationals as Kyle Kendrick goes six and two-thirds innings to record his ninth win of the year as the Phillies defeated the Nats, 8-4. The Phillies would take the lead in the second inning as Jayson Werth hits a solo home run, his fifteenth home run of the year, to give the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. Four batters later, with runners on second and third, and one out, Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI ground ball, third to first, scoring Eric Bruntlett, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, making it 2-0 Phillies. The next batter, Shane Victorino, would also hit a ground ball to the third baseman, but Ryan Zimmerman would this time throw the ball away trying to get the out at first, allowing Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier singled, to score on the throwing error, giving the Phillies a 3-0 lead, and allowing Victorino to reach second base. In the bottom of the second, Kory Casto would score the Nationals’ first run on a Kyle Kendrick wild pitch, after getting on base with a double, and going to third on a ground out, short to first, to make it a 3-1 Phillies’ lead. The Nationals would make it a 3-2 Phils’ lead as Jesus Flores would hit a RBI single, knocking in Zimmerman, who has reached base earlier after being hit by a pitched ball. The Phillies would increase their lead in the fourth to 5-2 as Rollins would hit a two-run home run, his ninth home run of the year, scoring Kendrick, who has earlier reached first base on catcher Jesus Flores’ throwing error to first after Kendrick has struck out on a pitch that Flores has to block in the dirt. Then in the sixth, with a runner on second, and two outs, Victorino would get a single on a hard grounder to the third baseman, reaching first safely on Ronnie Belliard’s throwing error, while Rollins, who has doubled earlier, would score on the error, to make it 6-2 Phillies. Ryan Howard would two batters later get a RBI single, scoring Victorino, giving the Phillies a 7-2 lead. Pat Burrell would follow with a RBI single, scoring Chase Utley, who has earlier singled, to give the Phillies an 8-2 lead. In the ninth, with Rudy Seanez on the mound, the Nationals tried to create a very late rally. Pete Orr would start the inning off with a single. Pinch hitter Felipe Lopez would follow with a double, putting Orr on third. Willie Harris would then hit a RBI ground ball to first base for the inning’s first out, scoring Orr, while moving Lopez to third, making it an 8-3 Phillies’ lead. Lasting Milledge would then hit a slow ball towards first, that Seanez would grab before he tags out Milledge for the second out of the inning, while Lopez scores, giving the Phillies an 8-4 lead. After a walk to Ryan Langerhans, Charlie Manuel would come out and replace Seanez with Chad Durbin. Durbin would then end the game by getting Austin Kearns to fly out to left.
Kyle Kendrick would get the win, as he pitches six and two-thirds innings of strong ball, giving up only two earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 9-5 with a 4.59 ERA. Clay Condrey would pitch an inning and a third of shut out ball, giving up no hits. Rudy Seanez would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on two hits. Chad Durbin would pitch to only one batter, getting him to fly out. John Lannan would get the lost, lasting five and two-thirds innings, giving up eight runs, six of which were earned, on nine hits. His record would fall to 6-11 with a ERA of 3.61. Chris Manning would pitch to one batter, giving up a hit. Garrett Mock would pitch an inning and a third, giving up a hit and no runs. Jesus Colome would go two innings, giving up no runs on no hits.
The Phillies have completed their first sweep of the second half, while winning their fifth straight game. This is the fourth game during their winning streak that the Phillies’ offense have knocked in eight runs or more, while getting three extra-bases hits (1 (2B), 2 (HR)). This is also the first time in a while that the Phillies have been ten games over .500 since Interleague play. The Phillies would end July with a 15-10 record. The Phillies hope that their rejuvenated offense will continue in St. Louis, the city where their dangerous offense would begin to disappear back in mid-June.
The Phillies (59-49) will now go on to St. Louis to play the Cardinals (61-50, 2nd-T National League Central) in a three games weekend series. The first game of the series will be played in the new Busch Stadium and will start at 8:15 pm Eastern (7:15 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be their ace Cole Hamels (9-6, 3.27), who is coming off a bad outing against the Braves on July 26, where he would get a no-decision as he would only last three and two-thirds innings, giving up nine runs, only four of which would be earned, in the Phillies’ 10-9 win. He has already faced the Cardinals once before this year on July 8, losing that game as he went seven innings, giving up just two earned runs on three hits, in the Phillies’ 2-0 lost. He will for his fifth straight start try for his tenth win of the year, while trying to increase the Phillies’ present winning streak to six games. The Cardinals will counter with Kyle Lohse (12-3, 3.68), who is coming off a lost against the Mets on July 27, pitching five innings as he gave up seven earned runs on eleven hits, in the Cardinals’ 9-1 lost. He has already faced the Phils once before back on June 14, winning the game as he goes eight innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits, in the Cardinals’ 3-2 win. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to silence the Phillies’ bats.
With the win, the Phillies’ lead over the Mets is now a game, as the Mets gets ready to play the Astros for a three games series in Houston. The Phillies’ lead over the Marlins is now at one and a half games, as they continue their four games series with the Rockies. Their lead over the Braves stay at nine games, as they start a three games series with the Brew Crew. The Phillies will be trying to increase their lead in the East while increasing their winning streak to six wins in a row.