The Phillies’ bullpen blew its first game of the 2009 season, as the team squanders an early 7-1 lead, as the Padres come from behind to defeat the Phillies, 8-7. After the game, Phillies’ manager Charlie Manuel said that he was not happy with the final result, as the Phils had wanted to win the game for the late Harry Kalas.
The Phillies started the game off by scoring five runs in the bottom of the first inning. Chase Utley gave the Phils a quick 3-0 lead as he hit a three-run home run, his second home run of the year, off of Padres’ starter Chris Young, after Young had given up two straight singles to Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino, with nobody out. Two outs later, with runners on first and second, Chris Coste made it a 5-0 Phillies’ lead with a two-run double, as he knocked in Raul Ibanez and Pedro Feliz, who had both gotten on base with walks. The Padres got one of the runs back in the top of the third as Phils’ starter Coel Hamels gave up a lead-off, solo home run to Luis Rodriguez, his first home run of the year, making it a 5-1 Phils’ lead. The Phillies got the run back in their half of the third as Feliz hit a two-out, RBI single, knocking in Ibanez, who had earlier tripled, giving the Phils a 6-1 lead. The Phillies made it 7-1 in the fourth inning, as Ryan Howard hit a two-out, RBI double, knocking in Victorino, who had earlier singled, stole second, his second steal of the game, and had moved over to third on an Utley’s ground out to first. But, from that point on, it would be the Padres fighting back. They started their come back in the fifth, as Hamels gave up a two-out, two-run home run to Scott Hairston, his second home run of the year, knocking in Rodriguez, who had earlier reached base on a force out, 5-4, wiping out Nick Hundley, who had gotten on base with a walk, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 7-3. An inning later, Hundley made the score 7-5 Phils as he hit a two-run home run off of Hamels, his first home run of the season, knocking in Kevin Kouzmanoff, who had earlier singled. In the eighth inning, the Padres made it a 7-6 Phillies’ lead as pinch hitter Jody Gerut hit an RBI single, knocking in Chase Headley, who had earlier singled and sending Rodriguez, who had earlier walked, over to third base, putting runners on the corners. Hairston followed with a two-run RBI double, scoring both Rodriguez and Gerut, giving the Padres the lead, 8-7. The Phillies tried to tied the score in the bottom of the eighth, when, with pinch hitter Greg Dobbs on second base, via a pinch hit single and moving up to second on a Rollins’ sacrifice bunt, trying to score on a two-out single to left by Utley. Sadly, a strong throw by Padres’ left fielder Headley would cut down Dobbs at the plate, 7-2, as Padres’ catcher, Hundley, tagged him out. The Phils made one last threat as Ibanez got on base with a single with one man out. After Jayson Werth had flied out to right for the inning’s second out, Matt Stairs came up to the plate to pinch hit for Feliz, to hopefully end the game with another two-run home run. After getting behind on the count, 3-0, Padres’ closer Heath Bell got the count up to 3-2, before finally ending the game by striking out Stairs, looking, with a fastball, collecting his sixth save of the season.
Cole Hamels got a no-decision, as he pitched six innings, giving up five runs on eight hits and a walk, while striking out four. Clay Condrey pitched a third of an inning, giving up a hit. Scott Eyre followed, pitching two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs or hits as he struck out one. Ryan Madson took the lost as he blew the save, giving up three runs on three hits and a walk. His record is now 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA. Brad Lidge then pitched an inning, giving up no runs on three hits, leaving the bases loaded, as he struck out one batter. Chris Young also got a no-decision, as he got hit hard by the Phillies, giving up seven runs, on nine hits and two walks, while striking out two batters, in three and two-third innings. Luis Pedromo followed, pitching one and one-third scoreless innings, giving up only two walks. Luke Gregerson then pitched a scoreless inning, striking out a batter. Cla Meredith picked up the win as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up just two hits. His record is now 2-0 with an 0.00 ERA. Duaner Sanchez pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits. Heath Bell recorded his sixth save of the season as he pitched a scoreless ninth, giving up just one hit while striking out a batter.
Phillies’ hitters collected fourteen hits in the game. Raul Ibanez lead the way with three hits, as he increased his batting average to .361. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley, Pedro Feliz and Chris Coste would each follow with two hits apiece. Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard and Greg Dobbs got the other three Phillies’ hits, with Dobbs’ hit being his first pinch hit of the season. Utley knocked in three of the Phils’ runs with a three-run homer. Coste knocked in two runs with a double, while Howard would knock in one with a double. Feliz brought in the other Phillie run with a single. But, the bullpen would blow its first game of the year as Ryan Madson gave up three runs in the eighth inning. Phillies’ pitching, though, is getting hurt by the long ball as Cole Hamels gave up three of them in the game, allowing the Padres to get back into the game. Phillies’ pitchers have now given up twenty-three home runs in just nine games. The pitchers need to give up less home runs if they hope to win games.
The Phillies (4-5, 4th) continue their four games home stand with the Padres (8-3, T-1st, National League West) tonight at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. Brett Myers (1-1, 5.54) will start the game for the Phils, coming off a win in Colorado on April 11, as he pitched seven innings, giving up four runs on four hits and a walk, while striking out six, in the Phillies’ 8-4 victory over the Rockies. Myers will be looking for his second straight victory while trying to keep the ball inside the park, having already given up six home runs, counting for all eight of the runs that he has so far given up this season. The Padres will counter with Shawn Hill (1-0, 3.60), who is coming off a victory over the Giants on April 10, as he went just five innings, giving up just two runs on seven hits and a walk, while striking out three, in the Padres’ 7-3 victory. He will also be trying for his second straight win. The Phillies hope to rebound with a victory tonight, after having now lost two games in a row.