Thanks in part to a bad call by the first base umpire, the Phils drop a close one to the Astros as former Phil Brett Myers come back to stifle his ex-teammates, 3-2.
The Astros took the lead in the first as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Hunter Pence hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Michael Bourn, who had earlier singled, stole second base and then moved up to third on Angel Sanchez’s single, giving the Astros a 1-0 lead, while sending Sanchez, who had just singled, on to second base. The Astros then tried to increase their lead as Sanchez tried to score on Carlos Lee’s double, but was instead gun down at home plate, 8-4-2, for the inning’s second out. The Phils tied it up at one-all in the third as Carlos Ruiz hits a lead-off home run, his sixth home run of the year. The Phils then took the lead later in the inning as, with two men on, and with one man out, Chase Utley hits an RBI single, knocking in Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier singled, before moving up to second on Lee’s fielding error, moved up to third on a fielder’s choice grounder hit by Shane Victorino, as Joe Blanton, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Rollins’ single, is thrown out at home, 3-2, giving the Phils’ a 2-1 lead, while Victorino, who was safe at first on the fielder’s choice, moved up to second base. The Phils tried to add to their lead in the sixth as, with a runner on second, Jayson Werth, via a double, and with two men out, after Raul Ibanez had just struck out, swinging, the Astros proceeded to intentionally walk Ruiz, to get to Wilson Valdez, but, after ball four is thrown, Astros catcher Humberto Quintero threw a strike to second base, picking off Werth, 2-6, who’s mind appeared to have been somewhere else, to end the inning. This base running blunder might have come back to haunt the Phils, as, in the eighth, with two men on, and with two men out, the Astros took the lead as Lee hits a two-run single, scoring pinch hitter Jason Michaels, who had earlier singled, had moved up to second on Bourn’s bunt single, and moved to third on Sanchez’s sacrifice bunt, 5-4, and Bourn, who had gotten on base with a bunt single, when he had in fact went out of the base line to avoid being tagged by Ryan Howard, but was called safe by the first base umpire, which lead to a long argument by Charlie Manuel before he was ejected from the game for arguing the call, and then went to second on Sanchez’s bunt, giving the Astros a 3-2 lead. That would end up being the final score as Brandon Lyon put down the Phils in the ninth for his seventh save of the season.
Joe Blanton receives a no-decision as he pitches seven strong innings, giving up just one run on six hits, while striking out nine. Ryan Madson records his fourth blown save of the year before taking the lost as he pitches an inning, giving up two runs on three hits, while striking out a batter. His record is now 4-2 with a 3.58 ERA. Brad Lidge pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while he strikes out one. Brett Myers gets the win as he pitches seven inning, giving up two runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out nine. His record is now 9-7 with a 3.08 ERA. Tim Byrdak collects his sixth hold of the year as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Brandon Lyon receives his seventh save of the year as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a walk.
The Phils had ten hits in the game, with Jimmy Rollins and Jayson Werth both leading the team with two hits each, with Rollins’ two hits being singles, while Werth’s hits were a single and a double. Chase Utley, Raul Ibanez, Carlos Ruis, Wilson Valdez, Joe Blanton and pinch hitter Dom Brown had the other six Phils’ hits, all singles, except for Ruiz’s solo home run, with Utley knocking in the other Phil’s run. The offense did not get the much needed key hit last night.
The Phils (70-54, 2nd East) will continue their series with the Astros (55-69, 4th Central) with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound Cole Hamels (7-10, 3.51), who is coming off a lost to the Giants on August 19, as he went only five innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and a walk, while striking out only five, in the Phils’ 5-2 lost. In his last three starts, his record is 0-3, as he pitched twenty innings, giving up seven runs on eighteen hits and three walks, while striking out twenty-four. He will be hoping that the bats will finally give him some runs so that he can finally end his win-less streak. The Astros will counter with Bud Norris (6-7, 5.23), who is coming off a win over the Mets on August 19, as he pitched seven innings, giving up two runs on two hits and two walks, while striking out four, in the Astros’ 3-2 win. In his last three starts, his record is 2-0 with a no-decision, as he pitched twenty and two-thirds innings, giving up eight runs on fourteen hits and five walks, while striking out twenty-one. He will be going for his third win in a row. The Phils’ offense will be out to score runs for Hamels tonight.
A blast by Carlos Ruiz in the top of the tenth, after the Phils should had lost it in the bottom half of a real weird ninth because of an ump’s bad call, leads the Phils to an extra-innings win, and a sweep of the free falling Marlins, 5-4.
The game for the first five innings was a pitchers’ duel between Phils’ starter Roy Oswalt and Marlins’ starter Chris Volstad, with both man getting out of bases loaded jams, Volstad in the top of the first, Oswalt in the bottom of the second. The Phils took the lead in the sixth as, with two men on, and with two outs, Carlos Ruiz hits a two-run double, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had earlier singled, then moved up to second on Dom Brown’s single, and Brown, who had just singled, to give the Phils a 2-0 lead. The Marlins then cut the Phils’ lead in the seventh as, with two men on base, and with one man out, pinch hitter Donnie Murphy hits a pinch hit ground-rule double, knocking in Wes Helms, who had earlier singled, and was safe on second when Ronnie Paulino sacrifice bunted into a force out at third, forcing out Mike Stanton, 1-5, to make it a 2-1 Phils’ lead, while Paulino, who was safe at first on the fail sacrifice bunt attempt, stopped at third. Two batters later, after Paulino is replaced at third by pinch runner Brett Hayes and Hanley Ramirez is intentionally walked to load the bases, the Marlins tied the game at two-all as Logan Morrison walks, forcing in Hayes with the tying run, while moving both Murphy and Ramirez up a base. The Marlins then took a 4-2 lead as Gaby Sanchez hits a two-run single, scoring both Murphy and Ramirez. The Phils then come back in the ninth. They begin the inning with Placido Polanco reaching base on a throwing error by Ramirez. Ross Gload then follows with a single, sending Polanco to second. The next batter, Raul Ibanez, then follows with a double, scoring Polanco, making it a 4-3 Marlins’ lead, while sending Gload to third base, with nobody out. Jayson Werth then tie the game at four-all with an RBI single, knocking in Gload, while sending Ibanez to third. Then the inning starts to get weird. Brown hits a sharp grounder to first, which is caught by Sanchez, who then throws home, catching Ibanez, who was trying to score from third on contact. Ibanez is then run back to third, before being tagged out for the inning’s first out, 3-2-5, while Werth would be safe at second, and Brown at first. Then, with Ruiz batting, Werth is picked off second, before being tagged out, 1-4, for the inning’s second out. Then, with the count 0-2 on Ruiz, the Marlins pitch out, before throwing out Brown on a steal attempt, 2-4, for the inning’s final out, as the Phils run themselves out of an inning. In the bottom of the ninth, the Marlins tries to win the game as their lead-off man, Ramirez, gets on base by being hit by the pitch, then steals second as Morrison strikes out swinging, putting him in scoring position with one out. The next batter, Sanchez, then hits a grounder down the third base line that is declared a foul ball by the third base umpire, while instant reply shows that it had actually been fair, denying the Marlins the chance of a walk-off win, as Sanchez then strikes out swinging for the second out. After Dan Uggla is intentionally walked, Cody Ross ends the inning by also striking out, swinging. In the tenth, the Phils regain the lead as Ruiz hits a lead-off home run, his fifth home run of the year, giving the Phils a 5-4 lead. That would end up being the final score, as Brad Lidge collects his twelfth save of the season by getting Emilio Bonifacio to end the game by flying out to right.
Roy Oswalt receives a no-decision as he pitches six innings and a third, giving up two runs on three hits and four walks, while striking out five. J.C. Romero pitches to three batters as he collects his third blown save, as he gives up two runs on a hit and two walks. Jose Contreras pitches two thirds of an inning, giving up a hit, as he strikes out two. Danys Baez pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Ryan Madson gets the win as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a walk and hitting a batter, while striking out the side. His record is now 4-1 with a 4.37 ERA. Brad Lidge records his twelfth save of the year as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out two. Chris Volstad also receives a no-decision, as he pitches five and two-thirds innings, giving up two runs on eight hits and three walks, while striking out two. Jose Veras pitches an inning and a third, giving up two hits, while striking out two. Clay Hensley collects his eighteenth hold as he pitches a scoreless inning, walking a batter, while striking out a batter. Leo Nunez blew his sixth save attempt of the year as he pitches an inning, giving up two runs, only one of which was earned, on three hits. Will Ohman took the lost as he pitches an inning, giving up a run on one hit, while striking out two. His record is now 0-1 with a 3.27 ERA.
The Phils had fourteen hits, with Placido Polanco, Raul Ibanez and Carlos Ruiz all leading the team with three hits each, with Polanco’s hits being singles, as he scored a run, while Ibanez’s hits were two singles and a double, as he knocked in a run and Ruiz’s hits were two doubles and a solo home run, once again being a triple short of the cycle, as he knocks in three runs. They were followed by Jayson Werth, who had two hits, both singles, as he knocks in a run. Jimmy Rollins, Ross Gload and Dom Brown had the other three Phils’ hits, all singles, as both Gload and Brown scored a run. Newcomer Mike Sweeney went to the plate in the eighth as a pinch hitter, receiving a walk. The Phils’ offense outhit the Marlins, although it took a bit of luck in the late innings for them to leave Miami with a series sweep.
The Phils (60-48, 2nd) come home to start a home stand, playing a three-game weekend series with the fading Mets (54-54, 3rd). The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm. The Phils will start the series with Joe Blanton (4-6, 5.86), who is coming off a no-decision against the Nationals on July 31, as he pitched six innings, giving up four runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out eight, in the Phils’ 7-5 walk-off lost. In his last three starts, his record is 1-1 with a no-decision, as he pitched nineteen innings, giving up eleven runs, nine of which were earned, on twenty-two hits and five walks, while striking out thirteen. He will be trying to start off the home stand on a winning note, while trying to stop giving up first inning runs. The Mets will counter with Jon Niese (7-5, 3.78), who is coming off a lost to the D-backs on August 1, as he pitched only four and a third innings, giving up seven runs, six of which were earned, on seven hits and three walks, while striking out two, in the Mets’ 14-1 lost. In his last three starts, his record is 1-1 with a no-decision, as he pitched fifteen and a third innings, giving up eleven runs, ten of which were earned, on twenty hits and six walks, while striking out nine. He will be trying to keep the Mets afloat. The Phils will be trying to increase their home winning streak to twelve games and their recent winning streak to five games, while trying to help sink the Mets chances even more.