The Phils hold off a late inning rally by the Cubs to make their ace Roy Halladay the NL’s first nine game winner as they defeat the Cubs, 7-5.
The Phils took the lead in the first as, with runners on second and third, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hits into an RBI ground out, 3-unassisted, scoring Shane Victorino, who had earlier singled, then went all the way to third on Chase Utley’s grounder, as Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier walked, then went to third on Victorino’s single, was caught between third and home on the grounder, before being tagged out at home plate, 1-5-2, for the inning’s first out, but allowing Victorino to reach third, and Utley to reach second base on the play. The Phils then took a 3-0 lead in the second as, with one man on, and with nobody out, Dom Brown hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the season, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had just walked. The Phils then took what was thought to be a commanding lead in the seventh as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Rollins, who then moved up to second on Victorino’s sacrifice bunt, 5-4, then walks to both Utley and Howard, and with one man out, Placido Polanco hits a grand-slam home run, his fourth home run of the season, and his 100th career home run, scoring Rollins, Utley and Howard, making it a 7-0 Phils’ lead. The Cubs then came back in the eighth. After Kosuke Fukudome walked, he would be forced out at second base on a Darwin Barney grounder, 5-4, as Utley would be unable to complete the double play, for the inning’s first out. The next batter, Starlin Castro, would then follow with a double, with Barney stopping at third, putting runners on second and third. Carlos Pena then walks to load up the bases. Aramis Ramirez then follows with a two-run single, scoring both Barney and Castro, cutting the Phils’ lead to 7-2, while sending Pena over to third, putting runners on the corners, with still one man out. Charlie Manuel then came out and relieved Jose Contreras, replacing him with J.C. Romero. Romero then proceeded to walk Blake DeWitt, reloading the bases. The next batter, Geovany Soto, followed with an RBI single, scoring Pena, making it a 7-3 Phils’ lead, while Ramirez would stop at third base, and DeWitt at second, leaving the bases loaded. The next batter, pinch hitter Lou Martinez, made it a 7-5 Phils’ lead with a two-run single, knocking in both Ramirez and DeWitt, while sending Soto up to second base. Manuel decided that was enough as he came back out and took the ball from Romero, replacing him with Michael Stutes. Stutes then proceeded to shut down the Cubs, as he first struck out pinch hitter Brad Snyder on a called third strike, before getting Fukudome, the tenth batter of the inning, to fly out to left on the first pitch. The Cubs then tried to erupt again in the ninth as their lead-off hitter, Barney, got on base with a walk, but the following batter, Castro, struck out swinging, for the inning’s first out, while Carlos Ruiz dropped the ball, although, with a runner on first, it’s still a strikeout, and the batter can’t go to first. But, Barney tried to move up to second, and is gunned down at second by Ruiz, who picked up the ball and threw to second, where the ball is caught by Utley, who applied the tag, for a strikeout-double play, for the inning’s second out. Antonio Bastardo then comes in to replace Stutes, before he recorded his second save of the season by striking out Pena, swinging, for the final out.
Roy Halladay (9-3, 2.39) got the win as he pitched seven shut out innings, giving up six hits, while striking out nine. Jose Contreras pitched a third of an inning, giving up four runs on two hits and two walks. J.C. Romero pitched to three batters, giving up a run on two hits and a walk. Michael Stutes received his third hold of the year as he pitched an inning and a third, giving up a walk, while striking out two. Antonio Bastardo collected his second save of the season, as he went a third of an inning, striking out the only batter he would face. Carlos Zambrano (5-3, 4.40) took the lost as he went six and a third innings, giving up seven runs on seven hits and seven walks, while he struck out five. James Russell and Jeff Samardzija combine for one and two-thirds scoreless inning, giving up a hit (Russell), while striking out four (two batters each) between them.
The Phis had eight hits between them, with Shane Victorino (Singles) and Raul Ibanez (Single, Double), both leading the team with two hits apiece. Chase Utley (Single), Placido Polanco (Home Run, 4 RBIs), Dom Brown (Home Run, 2 RBIs) and Carlos Ruiz (Single), had the other four Phils’ hits. Ryan Howard knocked in the other Phil run with a ground out.
The Phils (38-26, 1st East) will continue their series with the Cubs (25-37, 5th Central) with an afternoon game at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 4:10 pm EDT and will be televised nationally on Fox Sports. The Phils will send to the mound Cliff Lee (5-5, 3.62) who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on June 6, as he went seven strong innings, giving up just seven hits and a walk, while striking out seven, in the Phils’ 3-1 win. He will be going for his sixth win of the season. The Cubs plan to counter with Matt Garza (2-5, 4.07), who is coming off a lost against the Reds on June 6, as he went only four innings, giving up four runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out three, in the Cubs’ 8-2 lost. He will be trying to give the Cubs the lead in the four game series. The Phils will be out to give Lee some offensive support this afternoon.