Tagged: Blaine Boyer

In spite of Joe Blanton’s implosion on the mound, the Phils go on to defeat the Mets, 10-7.

After watching Joe Blanton allow the Mets to come back from a seven-run deficit, the Phils retook the lead before defeating the Mets, 10-7, evening the series, and regaining first place.

The Phils took the lead in the first as, with a runner on third, and with nobody out, Placido Polanco hits an RBI ground out, 4-3, knocking in Shane Victorino, who had earlier tripled, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. Three batters later, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Raul Ibanez hits an RBI single, knocking in Ryan Howard, who had earlier doubled, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead. The Phils then took a 3-0 lead in the second as, with two men on, and with one man out, Victorino hits an RBI ground out, 6-3, knocking in Pete Orr, who had earlier singled, then went to third as Mets’ starter Mike Pelfrey threw away Joe Blanton’s sacrifice bunt attempt for a throwing error, while Blanton, who had gone to second base on Pelfrey’s throwing error of his sac bunt, stayed at second. The Phils would increase their lead in the third as Howard hits a lead-off home run, his second home run of the season, giving the Phils a 4-0 lead. Then five batters later, with the bases loaded, via a single by Ibanez, a walk by Ben Francisco, moving Ibanez up to second base, and a single by Orr, moving both man up a base, and with one man out, Blanton hits a two-run single, knocking in both Ibanez and Francisco, giving the Phils a 6-0 lead, while sending Orr to third. The Phils then took a 7-0 lead two batters later as, with runners on the corners, and now with two men out, Polanco hits an RBI single, knocking in Orr, while sending Blanton up to second base. The Mets got two runs back in the fourth as, with one man on, and with no one out, Angel Pagan hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the year, knocking in Carlos Beltran, who had been hit by the pitch, cutting the Phils’ lead down to 7-2. The Mets then got to Blanton in the fifth as, with two men on, and with one man out, David Wright hits an RBI single, scoring Jose Reyes, who had earlier doubled, cutting the Phils’ lead to 7-3, while sending Willie Harris, who had just walked, up to second base. The Mets then cut the Phils’ lead down to 7-4 as Beltron hits an RBI single, scoring Harris, while sending Wright to second base. Two batters latter, with the bases now loaded, after Pagan hits a single, moving both Harris and Wright up a base, and with still one man out, Ike Davis hits a two-run double, knocking in both Harris and Wright, making it a 7-6 Phils’ lead, while Pagan would stop at third. Three batters later, the Mets tied the game up at seven-all as, after Brad Emaus walked to reload the bases, and with now two men out, pinch hitter Daniel Murphy hits an RBI single, knocking in Pagan, while sending Davis to third, and Emaus to second base. The Phils regain the lead in their half of the fifth as, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Polanco hits an RBI single, scoring Victorino, who had just doubled, giving the Phils an 8-7 lead. The Phils then made it a 9-7 lead two batters later, after Jimmy Rollins had walked, moving Polanco up to second base, as Howard hits an RBI infield single, as third base coach Juan Samuel aggressively sent Polanco home, while Rollins would stop at second base. The Phils then made it a 10-7 lead in the sixth as Francisco hits a solo home run, his second home run of the year. That would be the final score as the Phils’ bullpen would shut down the Mets for the final four innings, with Jose Contreras picking up his first save of the season with a scoreless ninth.

Joe Blanton received a no-decision as he pitched four and one-third innings, giving up seven runs on ten hits, two walks and a hit batter, while he struck out six. Antonio Bastardo (1-0, 0.00) got the win as he pitched one and two-thirds inning, giving up a hit, while striking out two. J.C. Romero received his first hold of the season as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Ryan Madson also received his first hold of the year as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out a batter. Jose Contreras recorded his first save of the season, as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a walk, as he struck out a batter. Mike Pelfrey also got a no-decision as he pitched only two innings plus four batters, as he gave up seven runs, six of which were earned, on eight hits and a walk, while he struck out a batter. Taylor Buchholz pitched two scorless innings, giving up three hits, while he struck out five. Blaine Boyer (0-1, 9.82) took the lost as he pitched two inning, giving up three runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out a batter. Pedro Beato and Francisco Rodriguez combined for two scoreless innings, as they walked one batter (Rodriguez), while striking out two (Rodriguez). The Phils’ bullpen came on to stop the Mets, after another Phils’ starter is knocked out of the game, this time pitching four and two-thirds innings, allowing only one inherited runner to score.

The Phils had sixteen hits in the game,  with Ryan Howard leading the team with four hits, an infield single, two doubles and a home run, as he knocked in two runs, while also scoring two, as he raised his average to .524. He would also walk. Placido Polanco followed with three hits, all singles, as he knocked in three runs. Shane Victorino (Double, Triple, RBI), Raul Ibanez (Singles, RBI) and Pete Orr (Singles) came next with two hits apiece. Ben Francisco (Home Run, RBI), Joe Blanton (Single, 2 RBIs) and pinch hitter John Mayberry, Jr. (Single), had the other three Phils’ hits.

The Phils (4-1, 1st) will conclude their three games series with the Mets (3-2, T-2nd) tomorrow with an afternoon game at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 3:05 pm. The Phils will send to the mound their ace, Doc Halladay (0-0, 1.50), as he received a no-decision on opening day against the Astros on April 1, as he pitched six innings, giving up a run on five hits, while he struck out six, in the Phils’ 5-4 walk-off win. He will be trying for a series win, while trying to increase his record over the Mets to 5-0. The Mets will counter with Jon Niese (0-0, 2.57), who also received a no-decision, his being against the Marlins on April 2, as he pitched seven innings, giving up two runs on four hits and a walk, while he struck out three, in the Mets’ 6-4, extra-innings win. He will be looking to give the Mets the series win. The Phils will be trying to head to Atlanta with a 5-1 record.

Three two-run home runs help propel the Phils over the last-place D-backs, 9-5, increasing their winning streak to six games.

The presently red hot Phils’ offense hit three two-run home runs to propel themselves over the last-place D-backs, 9-5, as they extend their winning streak to six games, and their present winning streak at home to nine, as their ace, Roy Halladay prepares to make a house call.

The D-backs took the lead in the first as, with the bases loaded, via a single to Justin Upton, Adam LaRoche being hit by the pitch, moving Upton to second base, and a walk to Miguel Montero, moving both Upton and LaRoche up a base, and with two men out, Mark Reynolds receives an RBI walk, scoring Upton, to give the D-backs a 1-0 lead, while moving up both LaRoche and Montero. The Phils tied it up at one-all in the third as, with two men on, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hits an RBI single, scoring Placido Polanco, who was safe at first on a fielder’s choice when Shane Victorino, who had earlier singled, and then stole second base, was caught between second and third on Polanco’s grounder, 6-4-5, then moved up to third on a single by Raul Ibanez, while Ibanez, who had just singled, would move up to third base. Three batters later, the Phils took the lead, after Jayson Werth walks to load up the bases as Howard moves up to second base, and with two men out, Carlos Ruiz receives an RBI walk, scoring Ibanez, while both Howard and Werth would move up a base, giving the Phils a 2-1 lead. The D-backs would tie it up at two-all in the fourth as, with one man out, Reynolds hits a solo home run, his twenty-fourth home run of the season. The D-backs took the lead in the fifth as, with runners on the corners, and with two men out, Stephen Drew hits an RBI single, scoring LaRoche, who had earlier doubled, and had gone to third on Montero’s ground out, three-unassisted, giving the D-backs a 3-2 lead, while sending Reynolds, who had been intentionally walked, on to second base. The Phils retook the lead in their half of the fifth as, with one man on, and with nobody out, Werth hits a two-run home run, his fourteen home run of the season, scoring Howard, who had earlier walked, to give the Phils a 5-4 lead. The D-backs would tie it up at four-all in the sixth as, with the bases loaded, via a Chris Young double, a walk to Kelly Johnson, and then a force attempt error by Howard that allowed Johnson to be safe at second and Gerardo Parra to reach first, while Young moved up to third, and with nobody out, LaRoche hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Young from third, while sending Johnson to third. The D-backs then took the lead as, with runners on the corners, and now with one man out, Montero hits a grounder to Polanco, who tried to tag out Parra in the basepath, but misses, before throwing to first for the out, 4-3, before Howard tried to throw out Parra at second for a doubleplay, but misses, allowing Johnson to score, to give the D-backs a 5-4 lead. The Phils then tied the game up at five-all in their half of the sixth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Ibanez hits an RBI single, scoring Victorino, who had earlier singled, and then had gone to second on Polanco’s grounder (liner) to the pitcher, 1-3, then went to third on Jordan Norberto’s wild pitch. One batter later, the Phils took the lead for good as Howard hits a two-run bomb into deep left center field, his twenty-third home run of the year, scoring Ibanez, giving the Phils a 7-5 lead. The Phils then made it 9-5 in the seventh as, with a man on, and with one man out, Cody Ransom hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the season, and the third two-run shot for the Phils in the ballgame, scoring Ruiz, who had earlier singled, then went to second on Wilson Valdez’s sacrifice bunt, 5-3. That would end up being the final score as Ryan Madson pitches a 1-2-3 ninth.

Cole Hamels receives a no-decision as he pitches only five innings, giving up three runs on six hits, four walks, and two hit batters, while striking out eight. David Herndon blew his first save of the year, before receiving his first career win (a win which he did not really deserve) as he pitches an inning, giving up two runs, one of which was earned, on a hit and a walk. His record is now 1-2 with a 4.19 ERA. Danys Baez records his sixth hold of the year as he pitches a 1-2-3 inning. Jose Contreras and Ryan Madson combine for two scoreless innings, giving up a hit (Contreras) and a walk (Contreras), while striking out two (Madson) between them. Rodrigo Lopez also receives a no-decision as he also pitches five innings, giving up four runs on seven hits and five walks, while striking out four. Blaine Boyer receives his fourth hold of the year as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on a hit. Jordon Norberto threw his first blown save of the year, before taking the lost, as he pitches to two batters, getting neither one out, as he gives up two runs on two hits and a wild pitch. His record is now 0-1 with a 11.05 ERA. Esmerling Vasquez pitches a third of an inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. Chad Qualls pitches two innings, giving up two runs on two hits.

The Phils had thirteen hits in the game, with Shane Victorino, Placido Polanco, Raul Ibanez, Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and Carlos Ruiz each getting two hits. Victorino, Ibanez and Ruiz’s hits were all singles, with Ibanez and Ruiz both knocking in a run, while Polanco’s hits were a single and a double, and both Howard and Werth’s hits were a single and a two-run home run, with Howard knocking in three runs, and Werth two. Cody Ransom had the Phil’s other hit, a two-run home run. The offense exploded last night, but is now back to the problem with the Disabled List as Victorino might be out for at least fifteen days because of his left hip bothering him late in the game. When will this stop???

The Phils (54-46, 2nd NL East) will continue their series with the D-backs (37-63, 5th NL West) with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils starter will be their ace Roy Halladay (11-8, 2.28), who is coming off a win against the Rockies on July 23, as he pitched eight shut out innings, giving up just five hits and a walk, while striking out nine, in the Phils’ 6-0 win. In his last three starts, his record is 1-1 with a no-decision, as he pitched twenty-four innings, giving up six runs, five of which were earned, on seventeen hits and two walks, while striking out twenty-one. He will be going for win no. twelve, while hoping the offense will continue to give him run support. The D-backs will try to counter with Edwin Jackson (6-9, 5.01), who is coming off a lost against the Giants on July 23, as he went six innings, giving up six runs, four of which were earned, on eight hits and a walk, while striking out four, in the D-backs’ 7-4 lost. In his last three starts, his record is 0-3, as he pitched seventeen and a third-innings, giving up fifteen runs, thirteen of which were earned, on twenty-three hits and ten walks, while striking out twelve. He will be hoping that he will not become the Phils’ offense latest victim. The Phils will be going for the series win tonight, while hoping that they can continue their six game winning streak and their nine game winning streak at home.

Cliff Lee dominates as he throws a two-hitter against the D-backs, going 4-0 in four starts since being traded to the Phils.

For the fourth time in as many start, Cliff Lee dominates the opposing batters, this time by pitching a complete game two-hitter, as he allowed in only an unearned run, as the Phils defeat the D-backs, 8-1. They increase their lead over the Marlins to five-and-a-half games as the fish lose to the Astros.

The Phils took the lead in the third as, with a runner on first, and with one out, Chase Utley hits a two-run home run to center field, his twenty-fifth home run of the season, scoring ahead of him Shane Victorino, who had just walked, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead. The D-backs would cut the Phils’ lead in half in the fourth as, with a man on third base, and with one man out, Stephen Drew hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Ryan Roberts, who had earlier reached base on a Pedro Feliz fielding error as he misplayed the ball, going to second on the error, then reaching third on Augie Ojeda’s ground out, 4-3, making it 2-1 Phils. That would turn out to be as much offense as the D-backs will be able to mustard. In the fifth, the Phils would bust the game wide open as, with two men on, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hit a three-run bomb into left center field, his thirty-first home run of the year, knocking in Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier double, and had gone to third on Victorino’s single, and Victorino, who had earlier singled, to give the Phils a 5-1 lead. The Phils then made it 6-1 as Jayson Werth followed Howard with a solo home run, his twenty-sixth home run of the season. In the top of the sixth, with one man out, pinch hitter Chad Tracy got on base with a pinch hit single, ending Lee’s no-hit bit at five and a third innings, before being stranded at first as the next two D-back hitters flew out to right (Roberts) and struck out looking (Ojeda). The Phils would increase their lead to 7-1 in the bottom half of the inning as, with a man on second, and with two men out, Victorino hits an RBI double, scoring Lee, who had earlier got on base with a single, and then went to second on a wild pitch. In the seventh,the Phils added another run as, with one man out, Werth hits a solo home run, his second of the night and his twenty-seventh home run of the year, making it an 8-1 Phils’ lead. That would be more than enough for Lee, as he would only allow two more base runners after giving up the single, a hit batter in the top of the seventh (Rusty Ryal) and a single in the eighth (Alex Romero), mowing down the D-backs in the ninth inning with a fly out to right (Josh Whitesell), a fly out to left (Drew) and a strike out swinging (Mark Reynolds), as he recorded a two-hitter, and his fourth straight victory since becoming a Phil and his seventh straight win in his last seven starts.

Cliff Lee picked up the win as he pitched a complete game, his second since joining the Phils, as he gave up an unearned run on two hits and a hit batter, while striking out eleven batters, tying a career high. His record is now 11-9 (4-0) with an ERA of 2.72 (0.82). Dan Haren took the lost as he lasted only five innings, giving up six runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out six. His record is now 12-8 with a 2.74 ERA. Clay Zavada pitched one and a third innings, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out two. Juan Gutierrez pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on one hit, while he struck out one. Blaine Boyer pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, as he struck out a batter.

The Phils had thirteen hits in the game, with Jayson Werth leading the way with three hits, with two of his hits being solo home runs, raising his average to .267. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley, and yes, Cliff Lee, followed with two hits apiece, with one of Shane’s hits being an RBI double, while one of Utley’s hits was a two-run home run. Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez and Paul Boko had the other four Phils’ hits, with Rollins’ being a double, and Howard’s being a three-run bomb which broke the game wide open. All but one of the Phils’ run came via the long ball, something the Phils do very well, but they will need to rely on less if they hope to win their second straight league title and world series championship. 

The Phillies (68-49, 1st National League East) will conclude their short home stand with the Diamondbacks (54-67, 4th National League West) with a night game. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm. The Phils will send to the mound Joe Blanton (7-6, 3.88), who is coming off a no-decision against the Braves on August 14, where he pitched seven innings, giving up just two runs, only one of which was earned, on seven hits and a walk, while striking out two, in the Phils’ 3-2 win. He will be trying for his first win in about a month, while also going for the series sweep. He will be opposed by Doug Davis (7-10, 3.59), who is coming off a no-decision of his own against the Dodgers on August 15, as he went six innings, giving up two runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out two, in the D-backs’ 4-3 win. He will be trying to prevent the sweep. The Phils will be trying to end the short home stand on a positive note, before going onto the road to face the hurting Mets for four games, and then the lowly Pirates for three, with a good chance to increase their lead in the East over the Marlins by the time they come back home.

Howard’s second grand slam of the year help to propel the Phils to a 6-1 win over the Cardinals.

Ryan Howard hits his second grand slam of the season, which placed him in a first place tie with Mike Schmidt for the most career grand slams hit by a Phil with seven each, help propel the Phils to a 6-1 win over the Central Division-leading Cardinals, as Joe Blanton collected his first victory of the 2009 season.

The Cardinals took a quick 1-0 lead in the third, as, with a runner on second, and two outs, Joe Thurston hits an RBI ground rule double, scoring Cardinals’ starter Kyle Lohse, who had earlier reached first base after being hit by the pitch, and had moved on to second on Skip Schumaker’s ground out, 1-3. The Phils took in the lead in the fourth, as, with one man on, and nobody out, Jayson Werth hits a two-run home run, his third home run of the year, knocking in Ryan Howard, who had earlier singled, making it 2-1 Phillies. In the fifth, with the bases loaded, via singles to Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino and Chase Utley being hit by the pitch, and with only one out, Howard drilled a 1-1 slider into right field for a grand slam home run, his fifth home run of the year, his second grand slam of the season, and the seventh of his career, knocking in Rollins, Victorino and Utley, as the Phils took a 6-1 lead. The Cardinals would threathen to get back into the ballgame in the bottom of the sixth, as they loaded up the bases via a walk to Ryan Ludwick, Rick Ankiel being hit by the pitch and Yadier Molina reaching base on a fielder’s choice grounder to Pedro Feliz, who was unable to throw out Ankiel at second base, with only one man out. But Blanton would get out of the jam by first striking out Tyler Greene swinging on a 3-2 fastball for the inning’s second out, and then getting pinch hitter Brian Barden to hit into a 6-4 force out at second base, wiping out Molina. That would be it for the Cardinals as the Phillies’ bullpen would take over and allow only two Cardinals’ batters to reach base during the last three innings. Meanwhile, in the eighth, Ankiel would be taken out of the game, after having make a catch of a fly ball hit by Feliz, as he tripped on his feet and ended up slamming into the outfield wall, head first. He would be driven out of the ballgame, giving a thumbs up to the fans signalling that he was okay. Hopefully, he is, as X-rays and a CT scan taken later has both proven negative.

Joe Blanton took the win, as he pitched six strong innings, giving up a run on four hits, two walks and two hit batters, while striking out three. His record is now 1-2 with an ERA of 6.84. Scott Eyre, Ryan Madson and Chad Durbin then came in to pitch three scoreless innings, giving up only one hit (Eyre) and a hit batter (Durbin). Kyle Lohse took the lost, as he was able to go only four and a third innings, giving up six runs on seven hits, two walks and a hit batter, while he struck out four. His record is now 3-1 with a 3.22 ERA. Trever Miller pitched a third of an inning, giving up no hits, while he struck out a batter. Blaine Boyer pitched a scoreless inning, striking out a batter. Denny Reyes pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a hit, as he struck out two. Kyle McClellan pitched a third of an inning, striking out the only man he would face. Ryan Franklin and Brad Thompson would each pitch a scoreless inning, with each pitcher striking out a batter.

The Phillies had eight hits in the game, with Jayson Werth and Ryan Howard both leading the team with two hits each. Werth’s hits would be a double and a two-run home run, raising his batting average to .262, while Howard’s hits would be a single and a grand slam home run, raising his average to .293. Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, Chase Utley and Carlos Ruiz would get the other four Phillies’ hits, all singles. Werth (2) and Howard (4) would collect the Phils six RBIs.

The Phillies (13-10, 2nd National League East) will conclude their two-games series with the Cardinals (17-9, 1st National League Central), in St. Louis. The game will be played tonight at Busch Stadium (III) and will begin at 8:15 pm Eastern (7:15 pm Central). The Phils will send to the mound Brett Myers (1-2, 4.83), who is coming off a lost to the Nationals on April 29, where he went six innings, giving up three runs on eight hits and three walks, while striking out three, in the Phillies’ 4-1 lost. He will be trying to even up his record, while also going for his fourth straight quality start. His opponent will be Adam Wainwright (3-0, 2.76), who is coming off a win against the Braves, also on April 29, as he pitched six innings, giving up just two runs on seven hits and five walks, while striking out two, in the Cardinals’ 5-3 win. He will be going for his fourth win of the year. The Phillies will be trying to leave St. Louis with a series sweep, before going on to New York for their first visit to the new Citi Field. 

Phillies’ eight-run seventh inning help lead to first victory of the season, 12-11, as Brad Lidge remains perfect in relief.

After trailing the Braves for the third straight game, the Phillies’ eight-run rally in the seventh inning lead to their first win of the 2009 season, as they defeat the Atlanta Braves, 12-11, ending the three-game series on a high note.

The Phillies began the afternoon by receiving their world series ring. After the ring ceremony, Joe Blanton started the game for the Phils, and right from the start was in for a long day as he gave up a two-out two-run home run to Brian McCann, his second home run of the young season, knocking in Yunel Escobar, who had earlier reached second base with a double, giving the Braves an early 2-0 lead. The Phils tied the game up in their half of the second as Raul Ibanez hit a two-run home run, his first homer as a Phil, and the team’s first home run of the season, scoring Ryan Howard, who had earlier doubled. The Braves retook the lead in the top of the third as they torched Blanton for five runs. After loading the bases via a single to Omar Infante, a walk to Kelly Johnson and another single to Escobar, with nobody out, McCann made the score 3-2 Braves by knocking in Infante with an RBI single, while moving Johnson and Escobar up to third and second respectively, leaving the bases loaded. After Casey Kotchman strikes out for the inning’ first out, Jeff Francoeur made it 5-2 Atlanta with a two-run single to center, knocking in both Johnson and Escobar, while McCann would move safely to third on Shane Victorino’s throw to home plate. Matt Diaz followed with a two-run double, scoring both Francoeur and McCann, giving the Braves a 7-2 lead. The Phils would get one of the runs back in the bottom half of the third, as Victorino, who had started the inning off with a triple, scored on an Infante throwing error of a Chase Utley ground ball to third base, making it 7-3 Atlanta. The Braves increased their lead to 9-3 in the fifth as rookie Jordan Schafer hit his second home run of his young career, a two-run shot to right, scoring Diaz, who had gotten on base earlier with a walk. Both runs came off of J.A. Happ, pitching in relief of Blanton, thus ending with one swing of the bat both the bullpen’s hitless and scoreless streak. The Braves added to their lead in the seventh, making it 10-3 Braves, as Chad Durbin gives up a bases loaded walk to Infante, forcing in Kotchman, who had earlier doubled and had moved over to third on Greg Norton’s walk, while moving Schafer to third, who had also walked, and moving Norton over to second base. Clay Condrey then came into the game in place of Durbin and got out of the inning by striking out Johnson. Now trailing 10-3, the offense decided to come to life. Victorino started off the Phils’ half of the seventh by grounding out, 5-3, for the inning’s first out. Utley followed with a single to center. Howard was then hit by the pitch, putting runners on first and second, as Utley moved up to second. The next batter, Jayson Werth, is then walked by Peter Moylan, who was pitching in relief of Eric O’Flaherty, loading the bases with still only one man out. Ibanez followed Werth with a single, knocking in Utley, as he collected his third RBI of the afternoon, making the score 10-4 Atlanta, while sending Howard over to third base, and Werth to second, leaving the bases loaded. Pedro Feliz then singled in Howard, making it 10-5 Braves, while Werth and Ibanez both moved up a base, leaving the bases loaded with Phils. Matt Stairs, pinch hitting for Carlos Ruiz, is given a four pitch walk, forcing in Werth with the third Phils’ run in the inning, reducing the Braves lead to 10-6, as the bases remained loaded. The next batter, pinch hitter Chris Coste, batting for Condrey, also walks, bringing home Ibanez, as the Phils now trailed 10-7, while the bases remained loaded for Jimmy Rollins, who became the ninth batter of the inning. Rollins received a four-pitch free pass, the third straight walk to a Phil batter, and the fourth walk of the inning, forcing in Feliz, as the bases stay loaded, making the score 10-8 Braves. The next batter, Victorino, followed with a single, scoring Stairs, making the score now 10-9 Atlanta, moving Coste and Rollins over to third and second base, respectively, as the bases remained loaded. The eleventh batter of the inning, Utley, walks, the fifth Phil to walk in the inning, tying the ballgame up at 10 all, as Coste crosses the plate, while Rollins and Victorino both moved up a base. Howard comes up to the plate, and with the count 1-1, hit the ball on a bounce towards Braves’ first baseman, Kotchman. Kotchman, having only one play, threw the ball over to relief pitcher Jorge Campillo, the fourth Braves reliever to pitch in the inning, who tagged the bag in front of Howard for the second out of the inning, as Rollins scored the go ahead run, giving the Phils their first lead of 2009, 11-10. Victorino and Utley both moved up a base on the play. Werth ended the inning by flying out to right. The Phils sent thirteen men to the plate, as they scored eight runs in the inning on four hits, five walks and a hit batter. Ryan Madson took over in the top of the eighth, pitching a strong 1-2-3 inning, throwing only seven pitches. The Phils added an insurance run in their half of the eighth, as Eric Bruntlett, pinch hitting for Madson, hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Ibanez, who had earlier walked and had gone to third on Feliz’s double, with nobody out, making it a 12-10 Phillies’ lead. In the ninth, Brad Lidge took the mound. Although he gave up a one-out solo home run to Diaz, his first home run of the season, Lidge recorded his first save of the 2009 season, as he struck out pinch hitter Garret Anderson for the final out, for the moment staying perfect in save opportunities as a Phil.

Joe Blanton received a no-decision as he got pummeled by the Braves, giving up seven runs on nine hits and two walks, while striking out six in four innings of work. J.A. Happ pitched two innings, giving up two runs on one hit and a walk, while he struck out two Braves. Chad Durbin pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on one hit and three walks. Clay Condrey received the win as he pitched a third of an inning, striking out the one man he would face. His record for 2009 is 1-0 with an ERA of 0.00. Ryan Madson pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning, as he held the lead. Brad Lidge recorded his first save of the season as he pitched an inning, giving up a run on one hit, as he struck out one. Javier Vazquez also received a no-decision, as he pitched six innings for the Braves, giving up just three runs on five hits and four walks, as he struck out five batters. Eric O’Flaherty followed him, pitching only a third of an inning, as he gave up two runs on one hit. Peter Moylan pitched to four batters, getting none of them out, as he gave up four runs on two hits and two walks. Blaine Boyer took the lost as he faced only two batters, with both of them scoring, as he gave up two runs on no hits and two walks. Jorge Campillo blew the save, giving up a run on two hits and two walks, in two-thirds of an inning. Jeff Bennett pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit while striking out a batter.

The Phillies had eleven hits in the game, with Victorino, Utley, Ibanez and Feliz each getting two hits. Howard, Ruiz and Coste had the other three hits. Ibanez knocked in three runs, Utley brought home two, while Feliz, Stairs, Coste, Rollins, Victorino, Howard and Bruntlett each knocked in a run, with Bruntlett’s coming in on a sacrifice fly. The Phillies collected five extra-base hits in the game, three doubles (Howard, Utley and Feliz), a triple (Victorino) and a home run (Ibanez). After three games, Utley leads the team in hitting with a .364 batting average, followed by Ruiz with a pleasently surprising .333 average.

The Phils (1-2) are off today. Their next game will be on the road against the Colorado Rockies (2-1) in Denver, Colorado, at Coors Field. The game will start at 2:10 pm Mountain Time tomorrow afternoon. The Phillies will send to the mound their ace, Cole Hamels, who ended 2008 with a record of 14-10 in 33 starts with an ERA of 3.09 in the regular season. His record for this season is presently 0-0 with a -.– ERA. The Rockies will oppose him with Jason Marquis, who last season had a record of 11-9 for the Chicago Cubs, with an ERA of 4.53 in 29 games (28 of which were starts). His record for this season is also 0-0 with a -.– ERA. The Phillies will be trying to even their season record tomorrow.

The Phillies use the long ball to win their first series of the second half as they defeat the Braves, 12-10.

The Phillies would use a combination of the long ball and situational hitting to come from behind again to defeat the Braves as they win their first series of the second half, 12-10. It didn’t look that way at the start as the Braves would score two runs in the top of the first off of Phillies’ starter Joe Blanton. With two men on and one out, Brian McCann would hit a RBI single, scoring Yunel Escobar, who has earlier singled, making it 1-0 Braves. Mark Kotsay would follow with a RBI double, scoring Mark Teixeira, who has earlier walked, to give the Braves a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the second, with Eric Bruntlett batting, the rain would come down, delaying the game for over two hours. The long rain delay would force the removal of both teams’ starters, Blanton and Jorge Campillo. The Braves would increase their lead in the top of the fourth off of Adam Eaton. With a runner on second and one out, Eaton would give up a two-run home run to Kelly Johnson, his ninth home run of the year, scoring Kotsay, who has earlier singled, to make it 4-0 Braves. Omar Infante would follow with a solo shot, his second home run of the year, to give the Braves a 5-0 lead. The Phillies would then come back in their half of the fourth. With two men out, and a runner on first, Chris Coste would hit a two-run home run, his eighth home run of the year, scoring Jayson Werth, who has earlier walked, cutting the Braves’ lead to 5-2. The next batter, pinch hitter So Taguchi would then get on base with a pinch single. Jimmy Rollins would follow by working a walk. Shane Victorino would then hit a three-run home run, his eighth home run of the year, scoring Taguchi and Rollins, tying the game at five all. In the fifth, the Phillies will take the lead as Pat Burrell would hit a solo home run, his twenty-sixth home run of the year, making it 6-5 Phillies. The Phils would then break the game wide open in the sixth. With Royce Ring now on the mound, he would be greeted by pinch hitter Carlos Ruiz with a pinch double. Ruiz would then go to third on a single by Rollins. Victorino would follow with a RBI single, scoring Ruiz, and sending Rollins to second to make the score 7-5 Phillies. Chase Utley would then strike out, making the first out of the inning. With Ryan Howard at the plate, Rollins and Victorino would perform a double steal, with Victorino just beating McCann’s throw from behind home plate. Howard would then hit a RBI single with the infield pulled in, scoring Rollins easily, and then scoring Victorino, as he knocks over McCann, as McCann tries to catch left fielder Jeff Francoeur’s throw from left on one hop, and then tries to turn around quickly to tag out Victorino, making it 9-5 Phillies. McCann would then lay on the ground for the next several minutes, with Victorino and Rollins, among others, looking to see if he was alright, before he is finally taken out of the game, and replaced by Corky Miller. Meanwhile, Royce is replaced on the mound by Blaine Boyer. Burrell would then fly out for the second out of the inning. Werth would then follow with a two-run home run, his fourteenth home run, to give the Phillies an 11-5 lead. Bruntlett would then end the inning by flying out. In the seventh, Rollins would increase the Phillies’ lead by hitting a solo home run, his seventh home run of the year, to give the Phils a 12-5 lead. The Braves would then make it close in the eighth. With Rudy Seanez on the mound, Kotsay would start the inning off with a single. After Francoeur pops up for the first out of the inning, Johnson would get on base with a walk, sending Kotsay to second. Infante would follow with a RBI double, scoring Kotsay and sending Johnson to third, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 12-6. Greg Norton would then load the bases as Seanez commits an error on his ground ball. Ryan Madson is then brought in to relieve Seanez. Gregor Blanco would then walk, scoring Johnson, while leaving the bases loaded as the Phillies now lead 12-7. Escobar would then pop out to Bruntlett in foul territory for the second out of the inning. Pinch hitter Martin Prado would then hit a double that a diving Werth would be unable to catch, scoring Infante, Norton and Blanco after it gets past Werth, making it a 12-10 Phillies’ lead. Madson would finally end the inning by getting Miller to ground out, third to first. In the ninth, Brad Lidge would proceed to nail down his twenty-fourth save of the year to finally end the ballgame.

Joe Blanton would get a no-decision thanks to the rain delay, as he pitches two innings, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Adam Eaton would also pitch two innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits. Clay Condrey would get the win as he pitches two innings, giving up no runs on one hit. His record is now 3-2 with a 3.72 ERA. J.C. Romero would go an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Rudy Seanez would go one-third of an inning, giving up four earned runs on two hits. Ryan Madson would go two-thirds of an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. Brad Lidge would pitch an inning, as he records his twenty-fourth save of the year, giving up no runs on no hits. Jorge Campillo would also pitch a no-decision because of the rain delay, going one and two-thirds innings, giving up no runs on two hits. Jo-Jo Reyes would go two and two-thirds innings, giving up five earned runs on four hits. Julian Tavarez would take the lost as he goes two-thirds of an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. His record is now 0-3 with a 6.48 ERA.Royce Ring would pitch a third of an inning, giving up four earned runs on four hits. Blaine Boyer would pitch two-thirds of an innings, giving up a run on one hit. Buddy Carlyle would pitch an inning, giving up one run on one hit. Will Ohman would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits.

The Phillies (56-49) have finally won their first series of the second half as well as the short home stand, while also starting a two game winning streak. For the second straight game the Phillies’ offense would score ten or more runs, this time with them doing it with a combination of the long ball and situational hitting. Does this mean that the offense is back? I’m going to wait until after the next several series before saying yes or no. The next Phillies’ game will be played on Tuesday as they meet the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park.

With the win, the Phillies continue to trail the Mets by a game, as they won their game against the Cardinals. The Marlins would drop to third place, a game behind the Phillies, as they lost to the Cubs. The Braves now trail the Phillies by six and a half games. As the Phillies take the day off before starting their series with the Nationals in D.C., the Mets go to Miami to start a three games series with the Marlins, while the Braves prepare for a four games series with the Cardinals.

The Phillies play situational ball as they come from behind to defeat the Braves, 10-9.

The Phillies used situational baseball to come from behind to defeat the Braves after it looked like they had finally imploded in the top of the fourth inning. The Phillies would score the game’s first runs in the second inning. Ryan Howard would start the inning off by getting on first base with a walk. He would be followed by a double from Pat Burrell, which would put runners on second and third with nobody out. Jayson Werth would then follow with a ground out, third to first, for the first out of the inning, doing what the Phillies’ batters have been doing too much of lately, hitting a ball to an opposing player with less than two outs, unable to score the runner(s) on base. Eric Bruntlett is then intentionally walked to load the bases. Chris Coste would follow him with a two-run double, scoring Howard and Burrell, making it 2-0 Phillies, while sending Bruntlett to second. Cole Hamels would then bunt the runners over to third and second base respectively, while making the second out of the inning. Unfortunately, Jimmy Rollins would then end the inning with a ground ball to the pitcher. The Phillies would increase their lead in the third, as Chase Utley would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Shane Victorino, who has earlier tripled, to make it 3-0 Phillies. But then the roof would appear to fall in on the Phillies and Cole Hamels in the fourth. The inning would begin with Hamels giving up a walk to Yunel Escobar. Mark Teixeira would follow with a single, sending Escobar to second. Hamels would then walk Brian McCann to load the bases with Braves. The next batter, Omar Infante, would then hit a two-run RBI double into left field, scoring both Escobar and Teixeira, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 3-2, while sending McCann to third. Jeff Francoeur would then hit a sacrifice fly for the first out of the inning, sending home McCann with the tying run, while Infante stayed at second. Martin Prado would then hit a grounder to second that was stopped by Utley. But instead of getting back up, picking up the ball and throwing out Prado, Utley would look at Prado and tried to pick up the ball at the same time, and dropped the ball, committing the first error of the inning, and leaving runners on the corners as Infante moved up to third. The next batter, Mark Kotsay would then hit a RBI single, scoring Infante and sending Prado to second, giving the Braves a 4-3 lead. Mike Hampton then followed with a ground ball right to Hamels. Instead of taking his time and throwing the ball straight to Rollins at second base to start a 1-6-3 double play to end the inning, he would throw the ball away as he throws it to where Rollins had originally started out, allowing Prado to score, Kotsay to reach third, and Hampton to be safe at first, on the second error of the inning, making it 5-3 Braves. Gregor Blanco would then follow with a single, scoring Kotsay and sending Hampton to second, as the Braves increased their lead to 6-3. Escobar, who has originally started the inning, would come up for the second time, but this time he would fly out to right for the second out of the inning. Teixeira would then come up for the second time and cap off the disastrous inning by hitting a three-run home run off of Hamels, his twentieth home run of the year, giving the Braves a 9-3 lead, and what looks to be the final knockout blow to the Phillies’ season. Charlie Manuel would after that finally come out and take a very snake bitten Hamels out of the game, replacing him with Rudy Seanez. Seanez would then end the inning with one pitch as he gets McCann to pop up to Utley, although that almost became a disaster in itself as the ball almost got away from him as it came back down. After Adam Eaton have come into his first game since being sent down to the bullpen after the Joe Blanton trade and put down the Braves in the top of the fifth, the Phillies’ batter would go after Braves’ starter Mike Hampton as they used something that they have not done for a while, playing situational baseball. Rollins would start the inning off with a single. Victorino would then hit a grounder towards deep shortstop that would be picked up by Braves’ shortstop Escobar, who would end up having no play, thus becoming an infield single as Rollins’ speed would allow him to get to second. Utley would then follow them with a single that would load the bases with Phillies. Hampton would then be taken out of the game at this point, replaced by Royce Ring. Howard would greet Ring with a two-run RBI single, scoring both Rollins and Victorino, cutting the Braves’ lead to 9-5, while sending Utley to third. Bobby Cox would then come out for the second time in the inning, and replace Ring with Blaine Boyer. Burrell would then hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Utley, making it 9-6 Braves. Werth would follow with a single, sending Howard to second. Bruntlett would then hit a deep fly ball to center, but Howard would stay at second, instead of going to third. It at first look like a base running blunder, but the next batter, Coste would hit a RBI single in the hole between first and second, allowing Howard to score, making it now a 9-7 Braves’ lead. Greg Dobbs would then come up to pinch hit for Eaton. On a 1-2 pitch, he would crush the ball into the second deck in right field for a three-run home run, his third home run of the year, and his team record tying twentieth pinch hit of the season, scoring both Werth and Coste, giving the Phillies a 10-9 lead. Rollins would then come up for the second time and tried to bunt himself back on. He would instead be thrown out by Boyer. The Phillies would then hold on, as Ryan Madson, Chad Durbin and J.C. Romero would combine for three shut out innings in which they would keep the Braves at bay, before the ball is finally handed over to Brad Lidge in the ninth, who would redeem himself for his previous night’s implosion by getting the Braves to go 1-2-3 for his twenty-third straight save without blowing it, breaking the team record that was originally set by Billy Wagner.

Cole Hamels would get a no-decision as he pitches three and two-thirds innings, giving up nine runs, four of which were earned, on six hits and three walks, two of whom would later score. Rudy Seanez would pitch a third of an inning, getting one man out on one pitch. Adam Eaton would get the win, as he pitched one inning, giving up no runs on one hits. Eaton’s record is now 4-8 with a 5.66 ERA. Ryan Madson, Chad Durbin and J.C. Romero would each pitch a scoreless inning, although Durbin would also pitch to one batter in the eighth, giving up only two hits (Durbin), while walking four. Brad Lidge would get a 1-2-3 inning, recording his twenty-third straight save without blowing one. Mike Hampton would also get a no-decision as he pitches four innings plus three batters, giving up six earned runs on six hits. Royce Ring would only pitch to one batter, giving up a single. Blaine Boyer would get the lost as he pitches an inning, giving up three earned runs on three hits. His record is now 2-6 with a 4.18 ERA. Will Ohman, Rafael Soriano and Julian Tavarez would each pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits to the Phillies.

I don’t know which one I am more shocked by, the implosion in the fourth inning, or the comeback in the fifth, using situational hitting. Seeing the Phillies collapse the way they did in the top of the fourth seems to show the way the Phillies have been screwing up so far this season, especially with Hamels throwing away the double play ground ball because he have been feeling frustrated up to that point in the inning, when he needed to just take his time and throw to Rollins at second for the second out of the inning, to lead to the end of the inning with a double play, and then to follow that up a few batters later by throwing up a home run pitch to Mark Teixeira in what, to me at least, seems to be the final collapse of the Phillies’ season. But then, to watch the team come back the way they did in the fifth inning, and doing it by using some situational hitting, something that they finally seems to be able to do, appear to show that the team isn’t dead yet. But, I’m going to wait to see if they can continue doing this for a while before thinking that the run machine is finally back and is now running once again on all cylinders.

The Phillies (55-49) will finish their three games weekend series with the Braves (49-54) this afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 1:35 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Joe Blanton (5-12, 5.00), who is coming off a so-so start against the Mets on July 22, where he would go six innings, giving up five earned runs on eight hits, in the Phillies’ dramatic come from behind 8-6 win. This will be his first ever start against the Braves as he try to continue adjusting to pitching to National League batters while trying to help the Phillies get their first series win of the second half. The Braves will counter with Jorge Campillo (5-4, 2.83), who is coming off a win against the Marlins, where he went seven innings, giving up no earned runs on two hits. He has pitched four time against the Phillies, twice in relief and twice as a starter, being 0-1 with a no-decision against them as a starter, and 0-0 as a reliever, pitching a combine total of thirteen and two-thirds innings, giving up eight earned runs on twenty-one hits. He will be trying to do better than he did in his last start against them, while trying to help the Braves will the series.

The Phillies stayed tied with the Marlins in second place, both now traling the Mets by a game, as the Mets have lost their game with the Cardinals in extra-innings. The Braves still trail the two second place teams by five and a half games. The Phillies will be trying for their first series win of the second half.