The Phils constantly came from behind before finally defeating the Marlins in extra-innings, 7-6, thus ending the 2008 regular season on a high note. They will now face the Rockies in the best of five Divisional Series starting on Wednesday.
The Marlins jumped to a quick 1-0 lead, as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Nick Johnson hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Chris Coghlan, who had earlier singled, and then reached third on Cameron Maybin’s double. Three batters later, with two men once again on, as Dan Uggla walked, and now with two men out, Ronny Paulino hits an RBI double, scoring Maybin, giving the fish a 2-0 lead, and sending Uggla to third. The Phils would get a run back in the fourth as Miguel Cairo hits a lead-off home run, his first home run of the season, making it a 2-1 Marlins’ lead. The Phils would then tied the game at two-all later in the inning as, with a runner on third, and with two men out, Ben Francisco hits an RBI single, knocking in Jayson Werth, who had earlier singled, and then proceeded to steal first second, and then third base. The Marlins would retake the lead in the fifth as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Marlins’ starter Josh Johnson, a single to Coghlan, sending J. Johnson up to second base, a ground out by Maybin, 5-3, which would move J. Johnson up to third and send Coghlan up to second, and a walk to N. Johnson, with two men out, Wes Helms hits an RBI single, scoring both J. Johnson and Coghlan, making it a 4-2 Marlins’ lead, and sending N. Johnson over to third. The next batter, Uggla, then followed with an RBI single, knocking in N. Johnson, making it 5-2 Marlins and sending Helms to third. The Phils would strike back in their half of the fifth as, with a runner on third, and with nobody out, Eric Bruntlett hits an RBI single, knocking in Andy Tracy, who had just tripled, making it a 5-3 Marlins’ lead. Two batters later, pinch hitter Shane Victorino hits an RBI single, knocking in Bruntlett, who had earlier stolen second base, to make it a 5-4 Marlin’s lead. Two batters later, with a runner on second, and now with two men out, Greg Dobbs hits an RBI single, scoring Victorino, who had just gone to second on a Cairo ground out, 3-unassisted, tying the game up at five-all. The Marlins regained the lead in the sixth as, with runners on the corners, and with one out, Coghlin hits into an RBI force out, knocking in Emilio Bonifacio, who had earlier walked, and had gone to third on pinch hitter Gaby Sanchez’s single, while Sanchez, who had just singled, was wiped out at second, 4-6. The Phils would tie it up again at six-all in the eighth as Cairo hits a lead-off triple, then went home when Marlins’ second baseman Uggla threw the ball into the dugout for a throwing error. The Phils would win the ballgame in the tenth as, with two men on, and with two men out, Paul Hoover hits an RBI infield single off of Helm’s glove, scoring John Mayberry, who had singled, then moved to second on Cairo’s sacrifce bunt, 2-3, giving the Phils a 7-6 walk-off win.
J.A. Happ received a no-decision as he pitched only two innings, giving up two runs on four hits and a walk, while striking out one. Kyle Kendrick then followed for two and two-thirds inning, giving up three runs on three hits and three walks, as he struck out three. Clay Condrey pitched a third of an inning, getting out the only man he would face. Brett Myers pitched a third of an inning, giving up a run on just a walk, as he struck out a batter. Sergio Escalona pitched one and two-thirds innings, giving up a hit and a walk, while striking out one. Jack Taschner pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits, as he struck out one. Scott Eyre pitched an inning, giving up only a walk, while striking out a batter. Chad Durbin got the win as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. His record is now 2-2 with an ERA of 4.39. Josh Johnson also recorded a no-decision as he went four and two-thirds innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and a walk, while striking out five. Tim Wood pitched a third of an inning, striking out the only man he would face. Burke Badenhop recorded his second hold as he pitched two 1-2-3 innings, striking out three. Kiko Calero blew his fifth save, as he went an inning, giving up a run on a hit, while striking out a batter. Renyel Pinto pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits, as he struck out two. Dan Meyer took the lost as he pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on two hits and a walk, while striking out one. His record is now 3-2 with a 3.09 ERA.
The Phils collected twelve hits in the game, with Miguel Cairo, Ben Francisco and Eric Bruntlett leading the team with two hits each, with Cairo’s hits being a home run and a triple, knocking in a run while scoring two. Greg Dobbs, Jayson Werth, Paul Hoover, Andy Tracy, Shane Victorino and John Mayberry Jr. collected the other six Phils’ hits, with Tracy’s hit being a triple. Besides Cairo’s home run, Dobbs, Francisco, Bruntlett, pinch hitter Victorino and Hoover each knocked in a run, with Hoover’s being the game winner. The non-regulars and the September call-ups help lead the Phils to their final win of the regular season.
The Phils finished the regular season with a 93-69 record, with one win more than they won in 2008, being their best record under Charlie Manuel’s leadership. The Phils will be off until Wednesday when they will play the first game of the NL Divisional Series against the Colorado Rockies, the wild card winner. The Phils will be trying to get even with the Rockies for 2007 when they got swept in three games.