For the first time this season the Phils’ bullpen fail to do its job as it gives up six runs in the last three innings as the Nats avoid being swept as they defeat the Phils’ 7-5.
The Phils took the lead in the first as, with two men out, Chase Utley hits a solo home run, his fifth home run of the season, and his fourth in the series, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. The Nats would tie it up at one-all in the third as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Cristian Guzman would hit into an RBI ground out, 6-3, scoring Nyjer Morgan, who had earlier walked, was caught stealing second but reached base on Ryan Howard’s throwing error, then moved up to third on Ian Desmond’s sacrifice bunt, 1-3. The Phils retook the lead in the sixth as, with the bases loaded, via a single to Placido Polanco, and walks to Jayson Werth, which moved Polanco up to second base and Raul Ibanez, which moved Polanco to third and Werth up to second base, and with two men out, Juan Castro hits a two-run single, knocking in both Polanco and Werth, making it a 3-1 Phils’ lead, while sending Ibanez to third, before Castro would move up to second on the throw. After Carlos Ruiz is intentionally walked to reload the bases, the Phils make it 4-1 as pinch hitter Greg Dobbs takes a walk, forcing in Ibanez, while Castro and Ruiz both moved up a base. The Nats cut the Phils lead to 4-2 in the seventh as, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Desmond hits an RBI single, scoring Alberto Gonazlez, who had earlier singled, then went to second on Willie Harris’ ground out, 3-unassisted. In the eighth, the Nats made it a 4-3 Phils’ lead as Adam Dunn hits a lead-off home run, his first home run of the season. Three batters later, with a runner on first, and with one man out, the Nats’ took the lead as pinch hitter Ryan Zimmerman hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the year, knocking in Ivan Rodriguez, who had earlier walked, to make it 5-4 Nats. In the ninth, the Nats added to their lead as, with two men on, and with two outs, Rodriguez hits a two-run single, knocking in Desmond, who had earlier singled, stole second base, and then went to third on Dunn’s ground out, 3-unassisted, and Wily Taveras, who was pinch running for Josh Willingham, who had earlier walked, and then stole second, giving the Nats a 7-4 lead. The Phils made it a 7-5 game in the ninth as Shane Victorino hits a lead-off home run, his third home run of the season. But, that would be the final score as Matt Capps would record his fourth save of the season as he gets Werth to fly out to center with a runner on second to end the game.
J.A. Happ would receive a no-decision as he pitches five and a third innings, giving up an unearned run on three hits and a walk. Jose Contreras pitches two-thirds of an inning, striking out both men that he would face. Antonio Bastardo would record his second hold of the season as he pitches an inning, giving up a run on two hits. Danys Baez blows his first save of the season before taking the lost, as he gives up three runs on two hits and two walks, while striking out two, in one inning of work. His record is now 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA. Ryan Madson pitches an inning, giving up two runs on two hits and a walk, while striking out two. Scott Olsen also receives a no-decision as he pitches five and two-thirds innings, giving up four runs on five hits and three walks, while striking out five. Tyler Clippard receives the win as he pitches an inning and a third, giving up no runs on one hit and two walks, while he strikes out one. His record is now 2-0 with a 1.04 ERA. Sean Burnett records his second hold of the season as he pitches a third of an inning, getting out the only man that he would face. Matt Capps records his fourth save of the year as he pitches an inning and two-thirds, giving up a run on three hits, as he strikes out a batter.
The Phils had nine hits in the game, with Juan Castro leading the team with three hits, all singles, as he knocks in two runs, as he raises his batting average to .333. Placido Polanco follows with two hits, also singles, as he knocks in a run, while lifting his average to .475. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz had the other four Phils’ hits, with Victorino and Utley’s hits being solo hime runs, while Howard and Ruiz’s hits were doubles. Greg Dobbs got the Phils’ other RBI with a bases loaded walk.
The Phils (7-2, 1st) continue their home stand with a three-games set against the Florida Marlins (6-4, 2nd). The game will be played tonight at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound their ace Roy Halladay (2-0, 0.56), who is coming off a complete game win against the Astros on April 11, as he gave up an unearned run on seven hits, as he struck out eight, in the Phils’ 2-1 win. He will be trying to get his third win of the year in his first start before the home fans. The Marlins plan to send Anibal Sanchez (0-0, 6.00), who is coming off a no-decision against the Dodgers on April 11, as he pitched six innings, giving up four runs on seven hits and a walk, while striking out five, in the Marlins’ 6-5 win. He will try to keep the Marlins in the game by hoping to shut down the Phils’ offense.