After a terrific performance by their ace Roy Halladay, the bullpen almost let another game get away, as the pesky fish tried to get back into the game in the ninth before the Phils finally wins it, 8-6.
The Phils took a 1-0 lead in the first as, with two men on base, via walks to Shane Victorino and Chase Utley, with Utley’s walk moving Victorino up to second base, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hits an RBI single, knocking in Victorino, while sending Utley up to second base. Three batters later, now with the bases loaded, as Raul Ibanez is walked, sending Utley to third, and moving Howard up to second base, and now with two men out, Juan Castro hits an RBI single, scoring Utley, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead, while sending Howard on to third, and Ibanez up to second base, leaving the bases loaded. The Phils then made it 3-0 as Carlos Ruiz hits an RBI single, knocking in Howard, while sending Ibanez to third, and moving Castro up to second base. The Phils then made it 4-0 in the second as, with one man out, Placido Polanco hits a solo home run, which hits the left field foul pole, his second home run of the year. The Phils increased their lead in the third as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Castro hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Jayson Werth, who had earlier doubled and then went to third on an Ibanez ground out, 4-3, giving the Phils a 5-0 lead. The Marlins then made it a 5-1 Phils’ lead in the fourth as, with two men out, Dan Uggla hits a solo home run, his second home run of the season. In the seventh, the Phils added to their lead as Chase Utley hits a solo home run, his sixth home run of the season, and his fifith in four days, making it a 6-1 Phils’ lead. Two batters later, with a man on base, and with still no outs, Werth hits an RBI double, knocking in Howard, who had earlier singled, giving the Phils a 7-1 lead. Two batters later, with two men on base, and still with no outs, the Phils made it 8-1 as Castro hits an RBI single, scoring Werth, while sending Ibanez, who had just walked, on to second base. The Marlins then made it an 8-2 Phils’ lead as, with two men on, and with two men out, Hanley Ramirez hits an RBI single, knocking in Gaby Sanchez, who had earlier singled, and then moved up to second on John Baker’s single, while sending Baker, who had just singled, over to third base. The Marlins then tried to make a comeback in the top of the ninth. With runners on second and third, and with one man out, Brett Carroll hits an RBI infield single, scoring Uggla, who had earlier got on base with an infield single, went to second on Cody Ross’ single, and then went to third on pinch hitter’s Brian Barden’s soft ground out, 4-3, making it an 8-3 Phils’ lead, while sending Ross, who had earlier singled, and had gone to second on Barden’s ground out, on to third. Sanchez then made it 8-4 Phils with an RBI double, scoring Ross, while sending Carroll on to third base. Cameron Maybin then made it an 8-5 Phils’ lead as he hits an RBI single, knocking in Carroll, while sending Sanchez on to third. Charlie Manuel then came out to relieve Rookie David Herndon, and replace him with Ryan Madson for the save. The next batter, Baker, then hits into an RBI force out, 3-6, scoring Sanchez from third, while wiping out Maybin at second, for the inning’s second out. After Ramirez gets on base with a single, moving Baker up to second base, Madson finally records his third save of the season as he gets Jorge Cantu to hit into a force out, 6-4, wiping out Ramirez at second, for the final out.
Roy Halladay gets the win as he pitches eight innings, giving up two runs on eight hits, while he strikes out four. His record is now 3-0 with a 1.13 ERA. David Herndon pitches a third of an inning, giving up four runs on five hits. Ryan Madson records his third save as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up a hit. Anibal Sanchez took the lost as he pitches six innings, giving up five runs on eight hits and four walks, as he strikes out one. His record is now 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA. Dan Meyer pitches to five batters in the seventh, getting none of them out, as he gives up three runs on four hits and a walk. Chris Leroux pitches two scoreless innings, giving up just a walk, as he strikesout one.
The Phils had twelve hits in the game, with Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth, and Juan Castro leading the team with two hits each. Utley’s hits were a solo home run and a single, knocking in a run; Howards’ hits were both singles, knocking in a run; Werth’s hits were a single and a double, knocking in a run; while Castro’s hits were both singles, as he knocks in three runs. Shane Victorino, Placido Polanco, Carlos Ruiz and Roy Halladay had the other four Phils’ hits. Polanco’s hit was a solo home run, knocking in a run, while Victorino, Ruiz and Halladay’s hits were all singles, with Ruiz plating the final Phils’ run.
The Phils (8-2, 1st) continues their three-game series with the Marlins (6-5, 3rd) with a night game. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park, and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be the ageless Jamie Moyer (1-0, 7.50), who is coming off a sub-par start against the Astros on April 10, where he went six innings, giving up five runs on nine hits and a walk, in the Phils’ 9-6 win. He will be trying to continue his dominance of the fish, while improving his ERA. The Marlins will counter with Ricky Nolasco (0-0, 5.68), who is coming off a no-decision against the Reds on April 12, where he went six innings, giving up five runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out four in the Marlins’ 6-5 lost. He will be trying to even the series for the fish, hoping to continue his modest success against the Phils. The Phils will be trying to increase their lead in the NL East while trying to win their fourth straight series in the early season.
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.