A charge in the late innings, after suffering through an almost two-hours rain delay, before playing most of the game in a light rain, the Phils defeat the Braves, 6-3, to once again place themselves nine and a half games ahead in the NL East.
The Phils took the lead in the first as, with two men out, Chase Utley hits a solo home run to center field through the teeth of the wind, his tenth home run of the season, giving the Phils a 1-o lead. Three batters later, with two men on, and with still two men out, the Phils made it a 2-0 lead as Raul Ibanez hits a bloop single, scoring Ryan Howard, who had earlier singled, then stopped at second base on Hunter Pence’s single, while sending Pence, who had just singled, up to third base. The Braves cut the Phils’ lead down to 2-1 in the fourth as Dan Uggla hits a lead-off home run, his thirty-third home run of the year. The Braves tied the game up at two-all in the sixth as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Uggla, a double by Chipper Jones, sending Uggla to third base, and a walk to Freddie Freeman, and with nobody out, Alex Gonzalez hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Uggla. The Phils retook the lead in their half of the sixth as, with runners on second and third, and with nobody out, Howard, who had started the inning off with a walk, and then stopped at third base on Pence’s double, would score on Tim Hudson’s wild pitch, giving the Phils a 3-2 lead, while Pence, who had just doubled, would move up to third base. The Phils then made it a 4-2 lead as Ibanez hits an RBI double, scoring Pence. The Braves would cut the Phils’ lead down to 4-3 in the seventh as, with runners onn the corners, and with one man out, Uggla hits into an RBI force out, 5-4, wiping out Brian McCann, who had just walked, at second base for the inning’s second out, as he knocked in Michael Bourn, who had started the inning off with a double, then stole third. The Phils got the run back in their half of the seventh as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Howard hits an RBI ground out, three-unassisted, scoring Shane Victorino, who had earlier singled, moved up to second base when Placido Polanco was hit by the pitch, then went to third on Utley’s force out, 4-6, wiping out Polanco at second base for the inning’s first out, giving the Phils a 5-3 lead, while sending Utley, who had beaten the throw to first on his force out, thanks to Polanco’s take out slide, up to second base. Two batters later, after Pence had gotten on base with a walk, Ibanez hits an RBI single, scoring Utley, making it a 6-3 Phils’ lead, while moving Pence up to second base. That would be the final score as Ryan Madson recorded his twenty-eighth save of the year with a scoreless ninth.
Vance Worley (11-1, 2.85) gets the win as he pitched six innings, giving up two runs on seven hits and three walks, while striking out six. Michael Stutes recorded his tenth hold of the season as he pitched an inning, giving up a run on a hit and a walk. Brad Lidge recorded his fifth hold of the year as he pitched a scoreless inning, as he gave up a hit, while striking out three. Ryan Madson received his twenty-eighth save of the season as he pitched a scoreless ninth, giving up a hit, while striking out one. Tim Hudson (14-9, 3.14) took the lost as he pitched six innings, giving up four runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out five. Cristhian Martinez pitched an inning, giving up two runs on two hits, two walks and a hit batter, while striking out one. Anthony Varvaro pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit.
The Phils had nine hits in the ballgame, with Raul Ibanez leading the team with three hits, two singles and a double, knocking in three runs. Hunter Pence followed with two hits, a single and a double. Shane Victorino (Single), Placido Polanco (Single), Chase Utley (Home Run, RBI) and Ryan Howard (Single, RBI) had the other four Phils’ hits. The other Phil run came in on a wild pitch.
The Phils (90-48, 1st) will conclude their three-game series with the Braves (82-59, 2nd) with a night game tonight. The game will start at Citizens Bank Park and will begin at 7:05 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound Roy Oswalt (7-8, 3.80), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on September 2, as he went six and a third innings, giving up three runs on eight hits and a walk, while striking out seven, in the Phils’ 5-3 win. He will be trying to even up his record while trying to lead the Phils to a sweep. The Braves will counter with Brandy Beachy (7-2, 3.37), who is coming off a no-decision against the Dodgers on September 2, as he pitched six innings, giving up three runs on four hits and three walks, while striking out seven, in the Braves’ 8-6 lost. He will be trying to keep the Braves from being swept. The Phils will be out to sweep the Braves.