The Phils braved both the cold Denver night and the pesky Rockies to win the third game of the NL Divisional Series, 6-5, to take a two games to one lead.
The Phils took the lead in the first as, with two men out, Chase Utley hits a solo home run, his first home run of the post-season, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. The Rockies would tie the game up at one-one in their half of the first as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Todd Helton hits into a force out, as Carlos Gonzalez, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Dexter Fowler’s single, scored, while Fowler would be forced out at second, 4-6, for the inning’s first out. Three batters later, with two men on base, and now with two men out, Garrett Atkins hits an RBI single, scoring Helton, who had earlier moved up to second on Troy Tulowitzki’s single, giving the Rockies a 2-1 lead, while Tulowitzki, who had earlier singled, would move up to third. The Rockies would add to their lead in the third as, with one man on, and with two men out, Atkins hits an RBI double, knocking in Helton, who had earlier walked, making it 3-1 Rockies. The Phils would strike back in the fourth as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Ryan Howard hits an RBI single, scoring Shane Victorino, who had earlier walked, and then moved to second on Utley’s single, making it a 3-2 Rockies’ lead, while sending Utley over to third. Two batters later, with the bases loaded, thanks to a walk to Jayson Werth, with still nobody out, Raul Ibanez got on base with a walk, forcing in Utley, tying the game up at three-all, while moving both Howard and Werth up a base. The next batter, Pedro Feliz, would then hit into a double play, 1-2-3, forcing out Howard at home before being thrown out at first, for outs number one and two, while Werth would move up to third and Ibanez to second. Carlos Ruiz would then followed with an RBI single, knocking in Werth, giving the Phils back the lead at 4-3, while Ibanez would stop at third. The Rockies would tie the game up at four-all in their half of the fourth as, with two men out, Gonzalez would hit a solo home run, his first home run of the post-season. The Phils would retake the lead in sixth as, with two men on, and with one out, Ruiz hits an RBI single, scoring Ibanez, who had earlier walked, and then moved up to second on Feliz’s walk. giving the Phils a 5-4 lead, while sending Feliz up to second base. The Rockies would tie the game up at five-all in the seventh as, with runners on the corners, and with one out, Tulowitzki hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Gonzalez, who had earlier doubled, and would go to third on Fowler’s bunt attempt which became a bunt single as Scott Eyre sprained his ankle trying to make the play. The Phils would regain the lead in the ninth as, with runners on the corners and with one man out, Howard would hit a sacrifice fly, knocking in Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier singled, would move to second on Victorino’s sacrifice bunt, and then go to third on an infield single by Utley, who had hit a ball at the plate that should had been called dead as it had hit him, giving the Phils a 6-5 lead, while sending Utley up to second. The Rockies made one last attempt to tie the game in their half of the ninth, as they got two men on, both via walks to Gonzalez, who then stole second, and to Helton as he was pitched around, with two men out. But, the threat would end as Tulowitzki hit a fly ball to left for the final out.
J.A. Happ got a no-decision as he pitched just three innings, giving up three runs on five hits and two walks, while he struck out four. Joe Blanton pitched two and two-thirds innings, giving up a run on three hits. Scott Eyre picked up a hold, his first for the post-season, as he pitched a third of an inning, plus two batters, giving up a run on two hits. Ryan Madson picked up a blown save, as he pitched an inning, striking out two batters. Chad Durbin picked up the win as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning. His record for the series is now 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA. Brad Lidge picked up his first save of the post-season as he pitched a scoreless ninth, giving up just two walks. Jason Hammel also pitched a no-decision as he went only three and two-thirds innings, giving up four runs on four hits and three walks, and striking out five. Matt Belisle pitched a scoreless inning, walking a batter. Joe Beimel pitched a third of an inning, getting out the only man he would face. Jose Contreras pitched an inning, giving up a run on a hit and two walks, as he struck out two. Franklin Morales pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Rafael Betancourt also pitched a scoreless inning, giving up just one hit and a walk, as he struck out the side. Huston Street took the lost as he gave up a run on two hits. His series record is now 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA.
The Phils had eight hits in the game, which they made count in this game. Chase Utley led the team with three hits, which included a solo home run, knocking in a run, as he raised his series average to .417. Carlos Ruiz followed with two hits, both singles, as he knocked in two runs, raising his series average to .333. Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard and Pedro Feliz had the other three Phils’ hit, with Feliz’s hit being a double. Besides Utley and Ruiz, Howard brought in two of the Phils’ runs, with one of them coming in on a sac fly, while Raul Ibanez brought home the other Phil run via a walk. The middle of the Phils line-up is now a combined twelve for thirty-four with seven singles, three doubles (Howard (2), Ibanez (1)), a triple (Werth) and a home run (Werth) and six walks (Werth and Ibanez with three apiece) and knocking in eleven RBIs (Howard (4), Werth (2), Ibanez (5)), while scoring eight runs. At this point, Utley has finally joined the bats, while Ruiz has continued being a post-season threat. Now, Rollins needs to step up, as he is the only one among the regulars who is batting under .300 in the series.
The Phils (2-1) will continue their National League Divisional Series with the Rockies (1-2) with a game today. The game will be played at Coors Field and will begin at 6:07 pm Eastern (4:07 pm Mountain). The Phils will be sending out Cliff Lee (1-0, 1.00), who is coming off a complete game win on October 7, as he gave up only a run on six hits, while striking out five, in the Phils’ 5-1 win. He will be trying to pitch the Phils into the NL Championship Series with a win. The Rockies will counter with their game one starter Ubaldo Jimenez (0-1, 9.00), who is coming off a lost in the series’ first game, as he went only five innings, giving up five runs on nine hits and a walk, while he struck out four in the Rockies’ 1-5 lost. He will be trying to send the series back to Philadelphia. The Phillies will be trying to get back into the National League Championship Series today on Lee’s arm and their bats.