The Phils lose their sixth game since the All-Star break as they fall to the Cardinals, 5-1.
The Cards took the lead in the fourth as, with a runner on second, and with nobody out, Albert Pujols hits an RBI single, knocking in Jon Jay, giving the Cards a 1-0 lead. The Phils would tie the game up at one-all in the fifth as Ryan Howard leads off the inning with a solo home run, his twenty-second home run of the season. The Phils then threathen to take the lead in the seventh as they loaded the bases, via a walk to Jayson Werth, a single to Jimmy Rollins, sending Werth to second, and a walk to Carlos Ruiz, moving both Werth and Rollins up a base, and with two men out, but Cards’ starter Jaime Garcia turned the Phils back by striking out Joe Blanton swinging on three straight pitches. The wheels then started to come off of Blanton as the Cards took the lead in their half of the seventh. Matt Holliday would hit the first pitch he saw into the left field seats for a lead-off solo home run, his eighteenth home run of the year, giving the Cards a 2-1 lead. The Phils then threathen to tie up the game in the eighth as they put runners on the corners, with Shane Victorino on third, who had reached base on a two-base fielding error by second baseman Skip Schumaker, and then moving to third on Ben Francisco’s ground out, 4-3, and with Howard on first, via a walk, and with two men out, before the Phils are denied when Werth hits into a force out, 4-6, wiping out Howard at second base. The Cards would then increased their lead in their half of the eighth as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Felipe Lopez hits a two-run double, knocking in Aaron Miles, who had earlier singled, and had gone to second on Brendan Ryan’s sacrifice bunt, before going to third on Ruiz’s throwing error, and Ryan, who reached first and then went to second on Ruiz’s throwing error of his sacrifice bunt, giving the Cards a 4-1 lead. Four batters later, with the bases loaded, via a sacrifice bunt by Jay, 5-3, sending Lopez to third, an intentional walk to Pujols, and Holliday being hit by the pitch, and with one man out, Colby Rasmus hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Lopez, giving the Cards a 5-1 lead. That would end up being the final score, as the Phils went down 1-2-3 in the ninth.
Joe Blanton took the lost, as he pitches seven innings, plus three batters, giving up five runs, three of which were earned, on seven hits and a walk, while striking out three. His record is now 3-6 with a 6.03 ERA. J.C. Romero pitches a third of an inning, giving up a walk and hitting a batter. Jose Contreras pitches two-thirds of an inning, striking out a batter. Jaime Garcia gets the win, as he pitches seven innings, giving up a run on four hits and two walks, while striking out six batters. His record is now 9-4 with a 2.21 ERA. Kyle McClellan records his fourteenth hold as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, getting out both men that he would face. Trever Miller pitches to one batter, walking him. Ryan Franklin records his eighteenth save as he pitches one and one-third scoreless innings.
The Phils had only four hits in the game, singles by Shane Victroino, Jimmy Rollins and Cody Ransom and a solo home run by Ryan Howard. The offense doesn’t seem to be able to do much of anything right now, as they are, in general, being too impatient at the plate.
The Phils (48-46, 3rd NL East) will conclude their road trip to nowhere with an afternoon game against the red hot Cards (54-41, 1st NL Central). The game will be played at Busch Stadium and will begin at 2:15 pm Eastern (1:15 pm Central). The Phils’ starter will be Cole Hamels (7-7, 3.63), who is coming off a no-decision against the Cubs on July 17, as he pitched seven strong innings, giving up just one run on eight hits and two walks, while striking out six, in the Phils’ 4-1 come from behind win. In his last three starts, his record is 1-0 with two no-decisions, as he pitched twenty-one and two-thirds innings, giving up four runs on twenty-two hits and seven walks, while striking out seventeen batters. He hopes to finally cool down the Cards while trying to give the Phils a chance to leave St. Louis on a good note. The Cards will send to the mound their ace Adam Wainwright (14-5, 2.02), who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on July 17, as he pitched six shut out innings, giving up just five hits and a walk, while striking out three, in the Cards’ 2-0 win. In his last three starts, he is 3-0, as he pitched twenty-three innings, giving up just one run on sixteen hits and four walks, while striking out sixteen batters. He hopes to make the Phils his latest pitching victims. The Phils hope to salvage a win before going home to Philadelphia.