Yesterday, Major League Baseball announced that Phils’ catcher Carlos Ruiz was named the National League Player of the Week for last week. Ruiz, during last week, batted 11 for 22 for a .500 average, and a .593 on-base percentage, while he lead the NL with seven RBIs and was tied for first with 20 total bases. He was also ranked second among NL catchers with eight runs scored and a .909 slugging percentage, and was tied for second with eleven hits. He also went five for six with runners in scoring position.
In the Dodgers series, Ruiz would go 7 for 14 with four doubles, a triple, a home run and six RBIs, with his six extra base hits in the four-game series being the most by a Major Leaguer since Jayson Werth had done it, reaching the same total from Sept. 28-31, 2008. He also helped the Phils in their victory over the D-backs this past Saturday night, as he went 3 for 4 with an RBI, and being a major part of the Phils four-run eighth inning rally.
This is Ruiz’s first weekly award, as he is presently ranked second among NL catchers with eight doubles, and is third in batting average with a .296 average.
Congratulations on winning the award, Carlos.
The Phils (3-3, 3rd) will end their short home stand with a weekend series against the Mets (4-2, 2nd), starting with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm EDT.
The Phils, who presently own a two-game winning streak, will see if they can continue the Mets present two-game slide, as they send to the mound their number two starter, Cliff Lee (0-0, 1.50), who is presently coming off a no-decision against the Pirates on April 7, in which he pitched six innings, giving up just one run, thanks to a wild pitch, and his not being able to catch Carlos Ruiz’s throw back to him as he still had a chance to tag out the runner, on two hits and two walks, while he struck out four, in the Phils’ 2-1 extra-inning lost. Lee, who has a career record of 2-0 against the Mets with an ERA of 0.43 and seventeen strikeouts, as he pitched in 21 innings, will once again be going for his first win of the year. The Mets will counter with R.A. Dickey (1-0, 3.00), who is coming off a win against the Braves on April 7, where he pitched six innings, giving up just two runs on six hits and four walks, as he struck out three, in the Mets’ 4-2 win. Dickey, who has a caeer record of 2-3 against the Phils with a 2.61 ERA and twenty-seven strikeouts, will be trying to see if he can again give the Phils’ batters fits.
The Phils’ offense, after being able to score only eight runs in their first four games of the season, for an average of two runs per game, have scored a total of ten runs in their last two, while their pitching have allowed only two runs, after being rung up for six in the home opener. In their last two games, the Phils have cranked out a total of twenty-two hits, including six extra-base hits (2B (3), HR (3)), with Carlos Ruiz, Shane Victorino and Ty Wigginton all hitting their first home runs of the season. The offense would also have three stolen bases, with Victorino swiping his third and fourth stolen bases, and Juan Pierre swiping his second stolen base of the young season, as the team continues to use small ball, along with some timely hitting added in the second game of the series, as well as some Marlins’ fielding mistakes and some luck finally going their way. Pitching wise, the starters have had only one bad start, Cole Hamels’ opening day dud at home in which he gave up four runs, all but one of which was earned, while the rest of the staff (Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Vance Worley and Joe Blanton) have allowed a grand total of four runs in thirty-four innings pitched, for a record of 3-1 for the starters, with two no-decisions, in six starts. Lee will be trying to continue the so far excellent starting pitching when he faces the Mets tonight. The Phils hope that they can extend their winning streak, while putting the Mets back in their place, before they start an early trip to the West Coast.
Pat Burrell, who had played left field for the Phils from 2000-2008, and was a key member of the 2008 World Series Championship team, and the Phils have announced that he will officially retire as a Phil during the team’s weekend series with the Red Sox, May 18-20, after first signing a one-day contract. Burrell, the team’s no. 1 draft pick in 1998, would spend nine seasons with the ball club, playing in a total of 1306 games, with a batting average of .257 (1166 for 4535) with an OBP of .367 and an SLG of .485. As a Phil, among his 1166 hits were 253 doubles (14th), 14 triples and 251 home runs (4th) for a total of 518 extra-base hits (9th). He would also walk 785 times (5th). Burrell would knock in 827 RBIs (8th), while scoring 655 runs. Burrell’s main claim to fame as a Phil would be him hitting a double in the bottom of the seventh inning of game five of the 2008 World Series, which would lead to the game winning run. Burrell would then become a member of the 2009-10 Blue Jays, before joining the Giants later in 2010, becoming a member of their 2010 World Series Championship team, and then a member of their 2011 squad, before being released because of an aching right foot late in the season, and then announcing his retirement after the 2011 season. During his twelve years in the Major Leagues, Burrell would appear in a grand total of 1640 games, mostly as a left fielder and a DH (Rays), accumulating a career batting average of .253 (1393 for 5503), with an OBP of .361 and an SLG of .472 for an OPS of .834. He would have a total of 299 doubles, 16 triples and 292 home runs for a total of 607 extra-base hits, while he would walk a total of 932 times. Burrell would bring in a total of 976 runs, while crossing the plate 767 times.
The Phils tag their nemesis, Johan Santana, for ten runs, including four home runs, as they hammer the Mets, 11-5, taking the opening series in their rivalry, as they regain first place in the NL East.
The Mets took a quick 3-0 lead in the first as, with two men on base, and with two men out, David Wright hits a three-run home run, his fifth home run of the season, scoring Luis Castillo, who had earlier singled and moved up to second base on a Jason Bay’s single, and Bay, who had just singled. The Phils would strike back in their half of the first as, with one man out, Placido Polanco hits a solo home run, his third home run of the season, cutting the Mets’ lead down to 3-1. Two batters later, now with two men out, Ryan Howard would hit a solo home run of his own, his fifth home run of the season, making it a 3-2 Mets’ lead. The Mets increased their lead in the fourth as, with a man on base, and with one out, Rod Barajas hurt the Phils again as he hits a two-run home run, his sixth home run of the season, as he knocks in Jeff Francoeur, who has earlier been hit by a pitch, and then stole second, to make it a 5-2 Mets’ lead. The Phils would then lash out at Mets’ starter Johan Santana in their half of the fourth. With a runner on third, and with two men out, Raul Ibanez hits an RBI single, scoring Chase Utley, who had earlier doubled, and had gone to third on Jayson Werth’s ground out, 2-3, cutting the Mets’ lead to 5-3. Three batters later, with the bases loaded, via a single to Juan Castro, moving Ibanez up to secod base, and a walk to Carlos Ruiz, moving both Ibanez and Castro up a base, and still with two out, Phils’ starter Jamie Moyer forces in a run with a walk, scoring Ibanez, and making it 5-4 Mets, while Castro and Ruiz both moved up a base. The next batter, Shane Victorino, then gives the Phils the lead with a grand slam home run, his fifth home run of the season, and the second in two days, giving the Phils an 8-5 lead, as he knocks in Castro, Ruiz and Moyer. Two batters later, the Phils makes it a 10-5 lead as, with a man on base, and with still two men out, Utley, as the Phils have batted around, hits a two-run home run, his seventh home run of the season, knocking in Polanco, who had earlier singled. That would be it for Santana as he would be taken out of the game. Two batters later, the Phils would make it an 11-5 game, as Werth hits an RBI double, knocking in Howard, who had earlier singled. That would end up being the final score, as Danys Baez would pitch a 1-2-3 ninth, as Moyer and the Phils’ bullpen would silence the Mets’ bats for the final five innings.
Jamie Moyers gets the win as he pitches six innings, giving up five runs on six hits, and a hit batter, while striking out two. His record is now 3-2 with a 5.70 ERA. Chad Durbin and Danys Baez follows by pitching three scoreless innings, giving up just a walk (Durbin) between them. Johan Santana took the lost as he pitches just three and two-thirds innings, being hammered for ten runs on eight hits, including four home runs and two walks, while striking out one. His record is now 3-2 with a 4.50 ERA. Hisanori Takahashi pitches an inning and a third, giving up a run on five hits, striking out a batter. Pedro Feliciano, Fernando Nieve and Francisco Rodriguez combine for three shut out innings, giving up just two hits (Feliciano), while striking out three (Feliciano (1), Nieve (2)).
The Phils’ bat struck for fifteen hits in the game, with Placido Polanco and Ryan Howard both leading the team with three hits each, with Polanco’s hits being a solo home run and two singles, knocking in a run, while Howard was a hit short of the cycle as he hit a single, a double and a solo home run, knocking in a run. They were followed by Shane Victorino, Chase Utley and Jayson Werth, each getting two hits. Victornio’s hits were a single and a grand slam home run, knocking in four runs, Utley’s hits were a double and a two-run home run, plating two runs, while Werth’s hits were a single and a double, scoring a run. Raul Ibanez, Juan Castro and Jamie Moyer had the other three Phils’ hit, all singles, as Ibanez knock in a run with a single, while Moyer brought home a run with a walk. The Phils had a total of seven extra-base hits in the game (2B (3), HR (4)).
The Phils (14-10, 1st East) with continue their home stand with a four game series with the Cardinals (17-8, 1st Central). The game will be played later tonight at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound Joe Blanton (0-0, -.–), who is making his first start of the year after coming off an injury. He hopes to cool down the Cards. The redbirds will counter with Jaime Garcia (2-1, 1.04), who is coming off a win against the Braves on April 28, as he went seven innings, giving up no runs on four hits and a walk, while striking out five, in the Cadinals’ 6-0 win. He will be trying to keep the Phils’ potent offense under control. The Phils hope that their bats will continue to be hot as they get ready to meet the Cardinals.
The Phils have now won two games in a row in Grapefruit League play, evening their record at 3-3, as they defeat the Blue Jay, 4-2. Phils starter, Cole Hamels, had an up and down start. He started out with three scoreless innings, before giving up a lead-off home run at the start of the fourth inning, before being lifted after pitching three and two-thirds innings, giving up only one hit and two walks, while striking out three. He was followed by eventual winner Ryan Vogelsong, who pitched two and a third innings, giving up a run on three hits and two walks, while striking out a batter. Prospect J.C. Ramirez, part of the Cliff Lee trade with Seattle, then came in to pitch the final three innings, recording the save, his first in Spring Training, as he gave up just two hits, while striking out three.
The Phils scored a run in the fourth, taking a short lead, before taking the lead for good in the sixth, as they scored twice in that inning. They then scored an insurance run in the ninth. The Phils’ bats collected ten hits, with Wilson Valdez leading the team with three hits, followed by Placido Polanco, Greg Dobbs and John Mayberry Jr. with each recording two hits, while Cody Ransom had one. The Phils had three extra-base hits, two doubles, one by Dobbs, and the other by Mayberry, and a home run, a solo shot in the ninth by Ransom. Besides Ransom, Mayberry, Valdez and Carlos Ruiz each knocked in a run, with Ruiz’s rbi being on a sacrifice fly.
The next Phillies game will be tomorrow afternoon at Bright House Field in Clearwater against the Detroit Tigers, with game time at 1:05 pm.
New Phils ace Roy Halladay seems to already be in mid-season form as he gave up only three hits, all singles, to the Braves, as he struck out five batters, increasing his Grapefruit League total to eight, while pitching three scoreless innings against the Phils’ Eastern Division rival. The Phils would eventually win the game as they score two runs in the second on a two-run homer by Jayson Werth, one of his two hits in the game, and with a five-run outburst in the sixth, as John Mayberry, Jr. and Ben Francisco both knocked in two-runs apiece, while Brian Schneider brought home one run. The Phils had thirteen hits overall, with Werth and Ryan Howard leading the team with two hits apiece, while Mayberry, Francisco, Schneider, Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, playing in his first Grapefruit League game, Freddy Galvis, Greg Dobbs, Brian Bocock and Ozzie Chavez each had one hit. Francisco had the only other extra-base hit besides Werth’s homer, a two-run double.
After Halladay had pitched his three scoreless innings, Ryan Madson came in to pitch the fourth, his first Grapefruit League appearance. Madson did not have a good outing, as he gave up all four of the Braves’ runs, on three hits and two walks, getting his first blown save of Spring Training. Danys Baez and Sergio Escalona followed Madson, with each man pitching a scoreless inning, giving up between them just one hit and a walk (both by Baez). Andrew Carpenter then followed as he pitched three scoreless innings, giving up a hit, while striking out two, noting his first save of Spring Training. Baez got the victory, his first for Spring Training, for a 1-0 record, while Escalona received his first Spring Training hold.
The Phils, now 2-3 in Grapefruit League play, next play two games today with the Toronto Blue Jays, an A game this afternoon, and an earlier B game.
Behind the complete game pitching of Cliff Lee and an offensive attack powered by Chase Utley’s two solo home runs, the Phils defeated the Yankees, 6-1, taking a 1 games to 0 lead in the best of seven World Series.
The Phils took a quick 1-0 lead in the top of the third as, with two men out, Chase Utley hits a solo home run to right, his first home run of the series. The Phils increased their lead to 2-0 in the top of the sixth as, with one man out, Utley hits to right field his second solo home run of the night, and of the series. The Phils would then make it 4-0 in the eighth as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Jimmy Rollins, who then stole second, a walk to Shane Victorino, and then a walk to Jayson Werth, after Ryan Howard hits a fly ball which would move Rollins up to third base, while Victorino would move up to second base on Werth’s walk, and with two men out, Raul Ibanez hits a two-run seeing eye ball single into right field, scoring both Rollins and Victorino, while sending Werth up to second base. The Phils then made it 5-0 in the ninth as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Victorino hits an RBI single, knocking in Carlos Ruiz, who had earlier doubled, and then went to third on Rollins’ single up the third base line, while Rollins would move up to second. Two batters later, with runners once again on the corners as Rollins moved up to third on an Utley fly out, the Phils would make it 6-0 as Howard hits an RBI double, scoring Rollins, before Victorino is thrown out at home, 9-2, to end the inning. As the Phils build up their lead, Cliff Lee was handling the Yankees with ease, giving up only four hits by the ninth inning, with only one man reaching second base, Derek Jeter with a two-out double in the third, while striking out eight batters. The Yankees would finally score a run in the bottom of the ninth as, with two men on, via singles to Jeter and Johnny Damon, and with nobody out, Mark Teixeira hits a grounder to Utley, who threw to Rollins for a force out, for the first out of the inning, wiping out Damon at second base. But Rollins, who actually had time to make an accurate throw to first for a double play, instead threw the ball wildly past Howard and into the dugout, allowing Jeter to score, making it a 6-1 Phils’ lead, and allowing Teixeira to go to second base. But that would be it as Lee would then proceed to strike out both Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada swinging to end the ball game.
Cliff Lee pitched a complete game, giving up an unearned run on six hits, while striking out ten batters. His series record is now 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA. CC Sabathia took the lost as he pitched seven innings, giving up two runs on four hits and three walks, while striking out six. His series record is now 0-1 with a 2.57 ERA. Phil Hughes pitched to two batters, walking both, giving up two runs. Damaso Marte pitched two-thirds of an inning, striking out a batter. David Robertson pitched a third of an inning, giving up a hit and a walk. Brian Bruney pitched a third of an inning, giving up two runs on three hits. Phil Coke pitched a third of an inning, giving up a hit.
The Phils had nine hits in the game, with Chase Utley and Ryan Howard both leading the team with two hits a piece, with both of Utley’s hits being solo home runs, while both of Howard’s hits were doubles, knocking in a run. Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, Jayson Werth, Raul Ibanez and Carlos Ruiz had the other five Phils’ hit, with Victorino’s hit being an RBI single, Ibanez’s hit being a two-run single, and Ruiz’s hit being a double. The Phils had a total of four singles and five extra-base hits (2B (3), HR (2)). The Phils did rather well with RISP last night being 4 for 9.
The Phillies (1-0) continues the 2009 World Series with the Yankees (0-1) in the new Yankees Stadium with a ballgame tonight. The game is to start at 7:57 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound Pedro Martinez (0-0, 0.00), who last pitched on October 16 in game two of the NLCS against the Dodgers, where he received a no-decision as he went seven scoreless innings, giving up just two hits, while he struck out three, in the Phils’ 2-1 lost. He will be trying to keep the Yankees off-balance and give the Phils a commanding 2-0 lead in the series. The Yankees will counter with A.J. Burnett (0-0, 5.84), who is coming off a no-decision against the Angels in game five of the ALCS on October 22, where he pitched six innings, giving up six runs on eight hits and three walks, while he struck out three, in the Yankees’ 7-6 lost. He will be trying to even up the series at a game apiece. The Phils will be trying to leave New York with a two game to none lead, but will be happy to leave with a split before coming back home to Philadelphia with home field advantage.