For the second straight game, the Phils’ offense is unable to get the needed key hit as they lose once again to the Marlins, 6-4. Their lead over the Marlins is now done to five games.
The Marlins took the lead in the first as Chris Coghlan hits a lead-off home run, his sixth home run of the year, to give the Marlins a 1-0 lead. The Phils tied it up at one-all in the second as, with the bases loaded thanks to singles by Raul Ibanez, Carlos Ruiz and Cole Hamels on a bunt attempt that Marlins’ starter Sean West took too long to throw to first, and with one man out, Ibanez scored on a force out ground ball hit by Jimmy Rollins to second baseman Dan Uggla, who threw out Hamels at second for the inning’s second out, while Ruiz went on to third while Rollins was safe at first, thanks in part to Hamels’ take out slide at second base. The Phils then took a 2-1 lead as Shane Victorino hits an RBI single, knocking in Ruiz, while sending Rollins up to second base. The Marlins then tied it up a two-all in the third as, with the bases loaded, via a single to Emilio Bonifacio and walks to Coghlan and Nick Johnson, and one man out, Hanley Ramirez hit into a force out RBI, scoring Bonifacio, as Johnson was forced out at second, 4-6, while Coghlan moved up to third and Ramirez was safe at first. The Phils regained the lead in the bottom of the third as, with runners on the corners, and with two men out, Ryan Howard, who had earlier walked, had gone to second on West’s fielding error of an Ibanez ground ball, then reached third on a Pedro Feliz force out, 6-4, as Ibanez was wiped out at second while Feliz was safe at first, scored on a fielding error by Johnson of a pop up hit by Ruiz, making it a 3-2 Phils’ lead, while Feliz moved up to second base. The Marlins took the lead as, with a man on, and with one man out, Cody Ross hits a two-run home run, scoring Jorge Cantu, who had earlier walked, giving the Marlins a 4-3 lead. The Marlins added to their lead in the eighth as, with two men on, and with two men out, pinch hitter Jeremy Hermida hits an RBI single, scoring Ronny Paulino, who had earlier singled, and had gone to second on Bonifacio’s single, making it a 5-3 Marlins’ lead, while sending Bonifacio, who had just singled, over to third. The next batter, Coghlan made it 6-3 Marlins with an RBI single, knocking in Bonifacio, before Hermida was thrown out at third by a strong throw from right fielder Jayson Werth, 9-5, for the inning’s final out. The Phils got a run back in the ninth as, with a runner on third and with nobody out, Chase Utley hits an RBI ground out, 3-unassisted, as Victorino, who had earlier tripled, scored, making it a 6-4 Marlins’ lead. But that would end up being the final score as Ibanez flew out to center with a runner on for the final out.
Cole Hamels took the lost, as he lasted only five and a third innings, giving up four runs on five hits and four walks, while striking out four. His record is now 7-7 with an ERA of 4.77. Tyler Walker pitched two-thirds of an inning, getting out both men that he would face. Chan Ho Park pitched two innings, giving up two runs on five hits, while he struck out a batter. Kyle Kendrick pitched a shut out inning, while giving up only a walk. Sean West received a no-decision, as he pitched just four innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on seven hits and two walks, while he struck out four. Brian Sanches got the win as he pitched a scoreless inning, walking only a batter. His record is now 2-1 with a 1.14 ERA. Brendan Donnelly pitched a scoreless inning as he recorded his fifth hold. Dan Meyer also pitched a scoreless inning, recording his fifteenth hold, as he gave up only one hit, as he struck out one. Matt Lindstrom recorded his third hold while pitching a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, as he struck out one batter. Leo Nunez recorded his eleventh save of the year, as he gave up a run on two hits.
The Phils recorded eleven hits, with Ryan Howard leading the way with four hits, including a double, as he raised his batting average to .265. Shane Victorino was next with two hits, with one of them being a triple, as he knocked in a run. Jimmy Rollins, Raul Ibanez, Pedro Feliz, Carlos Ruiz and Cole Hamels had the other five Phils’ hit, with Feliz’s hit being a double. Beside Victorino, Rollins knocked in a run on a force out, while Chase Utley knocked in a run with a ground out. Although Howard got on base all five times that he came up, with four hits and a walk, and scored a run, he did not knock in a run, while the rest of the players in the middle of the lineup (Jayson Werth, Raul Ibanez), have together gone 1 for 9, striking out twice, while leaving six men on base. This team needs to start knocking in runs, and, as I’d said in my last few posts, they need to STOP STRIKING OUT when they have men in scoring position, especially with two outs or less. Maybe playing a little more situational baseball might take care of that, along with less swinging for the fences. If the homers come, they’ll come, guys, stopping trying to go for the fences every bleeping time you’re up at the plate. It’s getting annoying, and allowing the opposing pitchers to make you guys look ridiculous.
The Phillies (61-47, 1st) will continue their home stand with an afternoon game against the Marlins (57-53, 2nd). The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will begin at 1:35 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (10-8, 5.55), who is coming off a lost against the Rockies on August 4, as he went five innings, giving up six runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out three, in the Phils’ 8-3 lost. He will be trying to perform his usual magic against the fish, while hoping to stop both the Phils’ present slide, and his own personal one-game losing streak. The Marlins will counter with Josh Johnson (10-2, 2.98), who is coming off a no-decision against the Nationals on August 4, as he went seven innings, giving up four runs on six hits, as he struck out nine, in the Marlins’ 6-4 lost. He will be trying to get a sweep for the fish. The Phils will be trying to put the Marlins back to being six games behind them, with seven behind in the lost column.