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Powered by four home runs, Brett Myers pitched the Phils to a 7-3 victory over the Bronx Bombers.

Helped by four home runs, Brett Myers would pitch eight strong innings as the Phils defeated the New York Yankees in the New Yankees Stadium, 7-3.

The Phillies took a quick 1-0 lead on the game’s first pitch as Jimmy Rollins hits a lead-off home run, his third home run of the season. In the second, the Phils increased their lead as, with one man on, and one man out, Carlos Ruiz hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the year, knocking in Matt Stairs, who had earlier singled, to give the Phils a 3-0 lead. In the fifth, with one man on, and two men out, Jayson Werth hits a two-run home run, his eighth home run of the year, scoring Ryan Howard, who had earlier hit into a force out, 1-6, wiping out Raul Ibanez, who had earlier walked, at second base, to make it a 5-0 Phils lead. The Yankees finally got onto the board in the sixth as, with two men out, Alex Rodriguez hits a solo home run, his sixth home run of the year, making it a 5-1 Phils’ lead. The Phils got that run back in the seventh, as, with one man out, Ibanez hits a solo home run, his sixteenth home run of the season, giving the Phils a 6-1 lead. The Phils tacked on another run in the eighth as, with two men on, and one man out, Chase Utley hits an RBI single, scoring Pedro Feliz, who had earlier singled, and had gone on to second on Rollins’ single, making it a 7-1 Phils’ lead, while he sent Rollins, who had just singled, over to second. In the bottom half of the eighth, the Yanks would get a run back as Derek Jeter hits a lead-off home run, his sixth home run of the season, making it a 7-3 Phillies’ lead. Two batters later, with one man out, Mark Teixeira would hit a solo home run of his own, his twelfth home run of the season,  cutting the Phillies’ lead down to 7-3. But that would be the final score as Ryan Madson would shut down the Yanks in the ninth inning.

Brett Myers got the win as he pitched eight strong innings, giving up three runs on eight hits, while striking out five. His record is now 4-2 with a 4.34 ERA. Ryan Madson pitched a 1-2-3 ninth, striking out a batter. A. J. Burnett took the lost, as he went six innings, giving up five runs on eight hits, two walks and a hit batter, while he struck out seven. His record is now 2-2 with a 5.28 ERA. Chien-Ming Wang pitched three innings of relief, giving up two runs on six hits and a walk, as he struck out two.

The Phils had fourteen hits in the game, with Carlos Ruiz leading the way with four hits, raising his average to .271. Jimmy Rollins, Raul Ibanez, Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino followed with two hits each. Chase Utley, Matt Stairs and Pedro Feliz had the other three Phillies’ hits.Ryan Howard was the other starter not to get a hit. Werth and Ruiz had two RBIs each, while Rollins, Ibanez and Utley each knocked in a run. The Phils had five extra-base hits in the game, four home runs and a triple. The Phillies have now won seven of the eight games that they have so far played on this road trip as they go for their third straight road series win this afternoon.

The Phillies (23-17, 1st) continue their three-games weekend series with the Yankees (24-18, 3rd American League East), with an afternoon game that will be televised nationally on Fox Sports. The game will begin at 4:10 pm Eastern at the new Yankees Stadium. The Phillies will send to the mound J.A. Happ (2-0, 2.49), who will be making his first start of the season. His last appearance, as a reliever, was made on May 15, as he pitched two innings, giving up no runs on one hit and a walk, while striking out three, as he picked up the win, in the Phils’ 10-6 extra-innings win. Happ will be going out there to prove that he deserved to be the team’s fifth starter. The Yankees will counter with Andy Pettitte (4-1, 4.18), who is coming off a win against the Twins on May 18, where he went six and two-thirds innings, giving up four runs on twelve hits and one walk, while striking out three, in the Yanks’ 7-6 win. He will be going for his fifth win of the season. The Phillies will be going out to try and win their eighth game in their ten games road trip, while showing that they are a team to be respected.

Cole Hamels wins his first start as the Phils beat the Braves, 10-6.

After being knocked out of two straight starts by freak injuries, Cole Hamels was able to stay on the mound long enough last night to pitch six strong innings against Atlanta, as he wins his first start of the year, as the Phils defeated the Braves, 10-6.

The Phils took the lead in the second inning, as, with the bases loaded via a walk to Jayson Werth, Pedro Feliz reaching base on Braves’ shortstop Yunel Escobar’s fielding error, and a walk to Chris Coste, and two men outs, Phillies’ starter Cole Hamels hits a ground ball to Braves’ starter Jo-Jo Reyes. Reyes, after picking up the grounder, threw it away for a throwing error, allowing both Werth and Feliz to score, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead, while allowing Coste to go to third, and Hamels to reach second base. Jimmy Rollins then followed with a two-run double, scoring both Coste and Hamels, making it 4-0 Phils. The Phillies added to their lead in the third, as, with one man on base, and one out, Werth hits a two-run home run, his sixth home run of the year, knocking in Ryan Howard, who had earlier hit a ground-rule double, giving the Phils a 6-0 lead. The Braves would finally get on the board in the fourth, as, with runners on second and third, and two men out, Brian McCann hits a two-run single, scoring Chipper Jones, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Garret Anderson’s double, and Anderson, who had earlier doubled and had just beaten out Werth’s throw to the plate, cutting the Phils’ lead to 6-2. The Phillies would get one of the runs back in their half of the fourth as Coste hits a lead-off home run, his first home run of the year, making it a 7-2 Phils’ lead. The Phils made it 8-2 in the fifth, as Chase Utley hits a lead-off home run of his own, his ninth home run of the year. The Braves made it an 8-3 Phils’ lead in the top of the eighth as Omar Infante hits a lead-off home run, his first home run of the year. The Phils would get that run back in their half of the eighth, as, with two men on, and one man out, Feliz hits an RBI double, knocking in Werth, who had earlier been hit by the pitch and had gone over to second on Raul Ibanez’s single, making it 9-3 Phils, while sending Ibanez, who had earlier singled, over to third. Two batters later, after Coste had walked to load the bases, with still only one out, pinch hitter Greg Dobbs hits an RBI single, scoring Ibanez, giving the Phillies a 10-3 lead, while moving both Feliz and Coste up a base, leaving the bases loaded. Then, in the ninth, the Braves made it a close game, as, with two men on, and nobody out, Casey Kotchman hits a three-run home run, his second home run of the year, knocking in McCann, who had earlier walked, and had gone on to third on Jeff Francoeur’s double, and Francoeur, who had earlier doubled, making it a 10-6 Phils’ lead. But that would be the final score as Brad Lidge would get out the next three batters to end the ballgame.

Cole Hamels got the win as he pitched six strong innings, giving up only two runs on three hits and two walks, while striking out seven. His record is now 1-2 with an ERA of 6.17. Jack Taschner pitched a scoreless inning, giving up just a walk. Clay Condrey pitched an inning, giving up a run on one hit. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, giving up three runs on two hits and a walk, while striking out two batters. Jo-Jo Reyes took the lost, as he went five innings, giving up eight runs, only four of which were earned, on five hits and two walks, while he struck out six. His record is now 0-2 with an ERA of 5.48. James Parr pitched a scoreless inning. Eric O’Flaherty also pitched a scoreless inning, striking out a batter. Jeff Bennett pitched an inning, giving up two runs on three hits and a walk.

The Phillies had eight hits in the game. Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth, Raul Ibanez, Pedro Feliz, Chris Coste and Greg Dobbs each had a hit, with Rollins, Howard and Feliz’s hits being doubles, while Utley, Werth and Coste’s hits were home runs. Rollins and Werth both knocked in two runs, while Utley, Feliz, Coste and Dobbs knocked in one run each. Hamels has pitched his best game, so far, this season, which could be an harbinger of things to come from the rest of the staff, if they can just follow up the other two quality starts that were thrown earlier this week.

The Phillies (15-12, 1st) continue their three-games series with the Braves (13-16, 4th) at Citizens Bank Park. The game will be nationally televised on Fox Sports and will start at 3:40 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be Joe Blanton (1-2, 6.84), who is coming off a quality start against the Cardinals on May 4, when he went six strong innings, giving up just one run on four hits and two walks, while striking out three, in the Phillies’ 6-1 win. He win be trying for both his second straight win and quality start. The Braves will counter with Javier Vazquez (2-3, 4.19), who is coming off a lost against the Mets, also on May 4, as he pitched six and two-thirds innings, giving up six runs on seven hits and three walks, while striking out eight, in the Braves’ 6-4 lost. The Phillies will be looking for their second straight win, while looking for the second straight quality start from their starters.

Chan Ho Park’s bad pitching performance lead to a Mets victory over Phils in the series’ opener, 7-4.

The Phillies are unable to overcome Chan Ho Park’s poor performance, as he gave up seven earned runs to the Phillies’ main rival in the East, the Mets, as the Phils lose, 7-4.

The Mets took a quick 2-0 lead in the first, as, with one man on, and one man out, Daniel Murphy hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the season, knocking in Alex Cora, who had earlier walked. The Mets added to their lead in the second, when, with two men on, and no one out, Mets’ starter Mike Pelfrey helped his own cause by hitting a sacrifice fly, scoring Fernando Tatis, who had earlier singled, and had moved over to third on Omir Santos’ double, making it 3-0 Mets, while sending Santos over to third. One batter later, with Santos on third, and now one man out, Jose Reyes knocked him in with a sacrifice fly of his own, giving the Mets a 4-0 lead. The Mets made it 5-0 in the third, as, with the bases loaded via a walk to Carlos Beltran, a double to David Wright, sending Beltran over to third base, and an intentional walk to Tatis, with one man out, Santos hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Beltran, who beat out Jayson Werth’s throw to the plate, while Wright and Tatis both moved up a base. The Phillies would strike back in their half of the third, as, with the bases loaded, via a single to Shane Victorino, who later moved to second base on a throwing error by Pelfrey, who was trying to pick him off first, and walks to both Chase Utley and Werth, and two men out, Raul Ibanez hits a two-run RBI single, scoring both Victorino and Utley, while sending Werth over to third, making it a 5-2 Mets’ lead. One batter later, Pedro Feliz made it a  5-3 Mets’ lead by hitting an RBI single, scoring Werth, and sending Ibanez over to third. In the fifth, Wright made it 6-3 Mets as he hits an RBI single, knocking in Beltran, who had earlier doubled. Later in the inning, with two men on, and two men out, Pelfrey once again helped his cause by hitting an RBI single, scoring Tatis, who had earlier doubled, while sending Santos, who had earlier been intentionally walked, over to third. In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Phillies ran themselves out of a scoring opportunity, as, with one out, with Chris Coste, who had earlier been safe on a force out as Feliz, who had earlier singled, was thrown out at second, 6-4, and had moved on to second on pinch hitter Greg Dobbs’ pinch hit single, on second, and Dobbs’ on first via his pinch hit single, Jimmy Rollins hits a ground ball to shortstop Reyes. Reyes committed a throwing error, as he tried to throw out Coste at third. But, instead of going home, Coste stopped in front of third base, which turned out to be a bad move, as Dobbs, who had not seen Coste stop, had ran past second and had continued on to third. This would force Coste to head for home, where he would be tagged out by catcher Santos, after being caught in a rundown, 2-4-2, for the inning’s second out, while Dobbs would be safe at third, and Rollins would move up to second base on the rundown. Victorino then ended the inning with a fly out. Utley would make it a 7-4 Mets’ lead in the seventh, as he hits a lead-off solo home run, his eighth home run of the year. But that would be the final score as Francisco Rodriguez came in and pitched a 1-2-3 ninth, recording his fifth save of the year.

Chan Ho Park took the lost, his first as a Phillie, as he would pitch only four and two-thirds innings, giving up seven runs on eight hits and six walks, while striking out only one batter. His record is now 0-1 with an 8.57 ERA. Chad Durbin followed for one and one-third innings of relief, giving up only one hit and a walk. J.A. Happ and Clay Condrey would combine for three scoreless innings, only giving up a walk (Happ), while striking out one batter (Happ). Mike Pelfrey got the win, as he pitched five and a third innings, giving up just three runs on seven hits and three walks. His record is now 3-0 with a 6.00 ERA. Pedro Feliciano pitched an inning and two-thirds, holding off the Phils, as he gave up a run on one hit, while he struck out two. J.J. Putz pitched a 1-2-3 inning, recording a hold. Francisco Rodriguez recorded his fifth save of the year, as he also pitched a 1-2-3 inning, recording a strikeout. 

The Phillies had eight hits in the game, with Pedro Feliz leading the way with two hits, knocking in a run. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez, Chris Coste and Greg Dobbs had the Phillies’ other hits, with Utley’s hit being a solo home run. Besides Feliz and Utley, Ibanez knocked in two runs. The Phillies were unable to get into this game thanks to Parks ineffectiveness on the mound which put them behind early.

The Phillies (11-10, 2nd) continue their three-games weekend series with the Mets (10-12, 4th). The second game of the series will be played this afternoon at Citizens Bank Park and will be nationally televised by Fox Sports. The game will start at 3:40 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter with be the ageless veteran Jamie Moyer (3-1, 5.09), who will be going for his 250th career victory. He is coming off a victory against the Marlins on April 26, where he went six innings, giving up only one run on seven hits and a walk, while striking out six, in the Phils’ 13-2 blowout win. He will be going for his fourth win of the season while hoping to end the Phils’ present two-game slide. The Mets will counter with Oliver Perez (1-2,  9.31), who is coming off a lost to the Nationals, also on April 26, as he pitched only four and one-thirds innings, giving up seven runs on nine hits and three walks, while striking out only three, in the Mets’ 8-1 lost. He will be trying to even his record. The Phillies will be trying to even the series while doing so in front of a national audience.

National League Championship Series: Game 5: The Phillies Win the Pennant!!! The Phillies Win the Pennant!!!

Behind the five hit pitching of the National League Championship Series MVP Cole Hamels, the Phillies have defeated the Dodgers, 5-1, to win the NLCS four games to one. The Phillies are now in the World Series for the sixth time in the organization’s 126 years history and are now looking for their second World Series crown. The Phillies would strick first in the first inning as Jimmy Rollins would smack Chad Billingsley’s 3-2 fastball into the right center field seats for a lead-off home run, giving the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. The Dodgers would threaten to tie the game in the second as they would put two men on base, via singles to James Loney and Matt Kemp, with only one out. But Hamels would get out of the jam as he would get Blake DeWitt to hit into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Kemp at second base. The Phillies would then increase their lead in the third, as, with runners on first and second, and two outs, Ryan Howard would get a RBI single, knocking in Rollins, who has earlier walked, and then steal second, giving the Phillies a 2-0 lead, while sending Chase Utley, who has also walked, over to third. Pat Burrell would then follow with a RBI single, scoring Utley, making it 3-0 Phillies, while sending Howard over to third. After a wild pitch by Billingsley would send Burrell over to second base to put two runners in scoring position, Billingsley would intentionally walk Shane Victorino to load the bases. Billingsley would then be taken out of the game by Joe Torre and be replaced on the mound by Chan Ho Park. Park would then end the inning by getting Pedro Feliz to ground out, 6-3. The Phillies would then put the game away in the fifth. Jayson Werth would start the inning off with a lead-off single. Utley would then hit into a force out, 3-6, that would wipe out Werth at second for the inning’s first out, while Utley would beat the throw back to first. Howard would then follow with a single, putting Utley on second base. Burrell would then hit a ground ball to Dodgers’ shortstop Rafael Furcal, who would proceed to first boot the ball off of his glove and then kick it away from himself with his left foot, for a fielding error. Utley, who was running on the play, would then turn around third and head for home, while Howard would round second and head for third. Furcal, after catching up with the ball, would then uncork a wild throw towards home plate which would get past Dodgers’ catcher Russell Martin, allowing Utley to score safely and make it a 4-0 Phillies lead as Furcal would receive his second error on the play. Meanwhile, Howard would stop at third, while Burrell would move up to second, with still one man out. Shane Victorino is then intentionally walked to load up the bases. Feliz would then strike out swinging for the inning’s second out. Carlos Ruiz would then come up and hit a grounder towards Furcal, who would then proceed to commit his third error of the inning as he threw the ball past Dodgers’ first baseman Loney, allowing Howard to cross the plate with the Phillies’ fifth run, giving the Phillies a 5-0 lead, while allowing Burrell to get to third and Victorino to move up to second, while leaving the bases still loaded. Hamels would then end the inning by grounding out to Loney at first. The Dodgers would then try to get back into the ballgame in their half of the fifth, as Casey Blake and Kemp would both reach base with back-to-back singles. But Hamels would then get DeWitt to hit into another double play, 4-6-3, wiping out Kemp at second for two outs, while sending Blake over to third. Hamels would then end the inning by striking out pinch hitter Jeff Kent swinging. The Dodgers would finally score a run in the sixth, as, with no one on base and two out, Manny Ramirez would hit a solo home run, his second home run of the series, to make it a 5-1 Phillies’ lead. Hamels would then end the inning by striking out Martin looking. The Dodgers would threaten again in the seventh, as, with two men out, first Kemp and then pinch hitter Nomar Garciaparra would both reach base on walks, putting runners on first and second. Hamels would then settle down enough to end the inning by striking out Kent, looking, on a 2-2 fastball. In the Dodgers’ eighth, after getting out the first two batters, Ryan Madson would give up a single to Ramirez. After Ramirez would move up to second base on defensive indifference, Madson would end the inning by getting Martin to ground out to Howard at first. In the bottom of the ninth, the Phillies would hand the ball over to their closer Brad Lidge. Lidge would give up a lead-off single to Loney. Lidge would then get Blake to fly out to Victorino in right center field for the inning’s first out. He would then get Kemp to hit a deep fly ball to center that would be caught in front of the fence by Victorino for the inning’s second out. After Loney would move up to second on defensive indifference, Lidge would end the game by getting Garciaparra to pop up a 3-2 slider into third base foul territory, which would be caught by Ruiz for the final out of the ballgame, sending the Phillies into the 2008 World Series.

Cole Hamels would get the win, as he would pitch seven strong innings, giving up only one earned run on five hits and three walks, while striking out five. His record in the series is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA, earning him the NLCS MVP. Ryan Madson would pitch an inning of scoreless relief, giving up only one hit. Brad Lidge would also pitch an inning of scoreless relief, giving up just one hit. Chad Billingsley would take the lost, as this time he would only last two and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on four hits and four walks, while striking out four. His series record is 0-2 with an 18.00 ERA. Chan Ho Park would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs or hits. Greg Maddux would pitch two innings, giving up two unearned runs on two hits and a walk, while striking out three. James McDonald would pitch two innings of shut out ball, giving up only one hit and a walk, while striking out two. Joe Beimel, Cory Wade and Hong-Chih Kuo would combine for two scoreless innings, giving up only one hit (Kuo), while striking out one (also Kuo).

Like in the fourth game in Milwaukee, the Phillies would take the Dodgers’ fateful out of the game early with Jimmy Rollins’ lead-off solo home run. The Phillies’ offense would then knock Dodgers’ starter Chad Billingsley out of the ballgame in the third by scoring two more runs against a pitcher who has wilted under the post-season spotlight. The Phillies would then get their last two runs in the fifth, thanks to three errors by Dodgers’ shortstop Rafael Furcal, who would commit four errors in the series, all of them detrimental to the Dodgers’ hope for a series victory. Meanwhile, Cole Hamels would pitch a superb game, getting the first two Dodgers’ batters out constantly, so that Manny Ramirez would be unable to do any major damage against him, so that his solo shot late in the game would turn out to have no effect upon the game’s final outcome. Hamels was also helped along by a pair of double play balls that were hit by Blake DeWitt that would help to defuse Dodgers’ rallies in the second and fifth innings, while a Russell Martin strike out would help end a post two out threat in the seventh. The Phillies’ bullpen was once again superb as both Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would combine for two shut out innings, both giving up only one hit.  

With the victory, the Phillies can now relax for close to a week before they will finally face the American League Champion on October 22 in the home of the American League Champion. Of the two teams, I myself would prefer that the Phillies face the Boston Red Sox, as that would give them both a chance to snatch the World Series crown from the present champs as well as get revenge for the lost back in ’15. But, unless the Red Sox are able to pull off another trailing three games to one-three victories in a row senario, it looks like it’ll be a Phillies-Rays World Series, Fox’s ratings nightmare come true. And if it does, I’ll be laughing my head off, as this is what Fox gets for trying to overlook a couple of good teams because they were hoping for a Manny v. Red Sox wet dream. Shame on you, Fox. And, let go, PHILLIES!!!!

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Games 2 & 1: On the threshold of Winning the Eastern Division.

The Phillies (90-70) will conclude their final home stand of the regular season with the Nationals (59-100) with a game this afternoon, which will be nationally televised by Fox Sports and another game tomorrow afternoon. Today’s game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern, to be shown on Fox Sports. The Phillies’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (15-7, 3.78), who is coming off a victory over the Marlins on September 21, where he went six innings, giving up only one earned run on six scattered hits, in the Phils’ 5-2 win. In his last start against the Nats on August 21, he would receive a no-decision as he went six and one third innings, giving up just an earned run on five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-3 lost. He will be trying for both his team leading sixteenth victory and for the second straight year of pitching the Phillies into the playoffs, if the Marlins don’t defeat the Mets earlier today. The Nationals will counter with John Lannan (9-14, 3.86), who is coming off a lost to the Padres on September 20, when he went seven innings, giving up four runs, only one of which was earned, on four hits, in the Nationals’ 6-1 lost. In his last two starts against the Phillies, his record is 0-2, where he pitched a combined total of eleven and two-thirds innings, giving up eight earned runs on fourteen hits. He will be trying to get his tenth victory of the season while trying to see if he can stop the Phillies’ clinching celebration for one more day.

Tomorrow afternoon’s game, which will be the Phillies’ Fan Appreciation Day, will start at 1:35 pm Eastern. If the Phillies do not clinch the division today, their starter for tomorrow’s game will be their ace Cole Hamels (14-10, 2.09), who is coming off a hard lost against the Braves on September 23, where he pitched seven innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on eight hits, in the Phillies’ 3-2 lost. In his last start against the Nationals on September 2, he would get the victory as he pitched seven and a third innings of shut out ball, giving up only five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-0 win. He would be going for win number fifteen and clinching the division for the Phillies, and thus ending the Mets’ hope of gaining the divisional pennant. If the Phillies clinch on Saturday, their starter will more than likely be the rookie J.A. Happ (1-0, 3.90), who pitched a no-decision in his previous start against the Braves on September 22, going six and two-thirds innings, giving up only two earned runs on five hits, in the Phillies’ 6-2 win. He has faced the Nationals once before this season, pitching an inning of relief on September 1, giving up no earned runs on one hit, in the Phillies’ 7-4 lost. He has started four games, going 1-0 with three no-decisions, all of which the Phillies would win. He will be trying for his second victory of the year. Either pitcher will be opposed by Odalis Perez (7-11, 4.27), who is coming off a no-decision against the Padres on September 21, going six innings, as he gave up three earned runs on five hits, in the Nationals’ 6-2 lost. He will be trying to improve his record and if the pennant race is still on, ruin the Phillies’ chance to clinch the pennant.

The Phillies are presently ahead of the Mets in the East by two games as they play the Marlins in the next to last game to be played inside Shea Stadium, with the Phillies’ magic number to win the division at one. In the Wild Card race, the Brewers now lead the Mets by one game as they get ready to face the Cubs, with their magic number to clinch the Wild Card at two. The Phillies can clnch the East this afternoon, with the clinching party being seen on national television, if the Mets haven’t lost to the Marlins by the start of the ballgame. Whatever happens, the Phillies just need to take care of their own buisness and beat the Nationals. GO PHILLIES!!!!

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Game 3: The Phillies’ bat and Blanton’s pitching would help the Phillies defeat the Nats, 8-4. The Marlins’ defeat of the Mets would help shrink the Phils’ magic number down to 1.

The Phillies’ offense early innings offensive, and Blanton’s excellent pitching, would lead the Phillies to easily defeat the Nationals, 8-4. A Mets’ lost to the Marlins would help drop the Phillies’ magic number to win the Eastern Division down to one. The Phillies would take a quick lead in the first, as, with runners on the corners and one man out, Ryan Howard would hit a three-run home run, his forty-eighth home run of the year, scoring Jayson Werth, who has earlier singled and has moved to third on Chase Utley’s single, and Utley, who has singled earlier, to give the Phillies a quick 3-0 lead. The Nationals would get a run back in the second, as, with a runner on third and two outs, Luke Montz would hit a RBI single, knocking in Elijah Dukes who has earlier walked, went to second on a pass ball, moved to third on Kory Casto’s ground out, 4-3, to make it a 3-1 Phillies’ lead. The Phillies would blow the game wide open in their half of the second, as, with the bases loaded via a double (Greg Dobbs), a walk (Jimmy Rollins) and an infield single (Werth) and two outs, Utley would clear the bases by hitting a three-run RBI double, scoring Dobbs, Rollins and Werth, giving the Phillies a 6-1 lead. Howard would then follow with a RBI double, knocking in Utley, making it 7-1 Phils. The Nationals would cut the Phillies’ lead down in the fifth, as, with two men on and one out, Emilio Bonifacio would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Pete Orr, who would reach first on Howard’s fielding error and would move to third on Roger Bernadina’s double, to make it a 7-2 Phillies’ lead. One batter later, Bernadina would score on a Cristian Guzman’s single, cutting the Phillies’ lead down to 7-3. In the sixth, the Nationals would cut the lead down further to 7-4 Phillies as, with two outs, Casto would hit a solo home run, his second home run of the year, after the umpires have reviewed the play and dismissed Charlie Manuel’s argument that a fan has pulled the ball into the right field stands. The Phillies would get that run back in the seventh as, with runners on second and third and two men outs, Utley, who has earlier singled, stole second and would reached third on Shane Victorino’s force out, which would wipe out Pat Burrell, who has earlier walked, would crossed the plate on a pass ball, while Victorino, who has earlier stole second, would move on to third, making it 8-4 Phillies. Brad Lidge would then be given the ball in the ninth and would pitch a 1-2-3 inning.

Joe Blanton would get the win as he pitches six very strong innings, giving up four runs, only one of which was earned, on five hits. His record is now 9-12, 4-0 as a Phil, with an ERA of 4.69. Scott Eyre would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits while striking out two. Ryan Madson would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs on one hit. J.C. Romero would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs or hits. Brad Lidge would pitch a 1-2-3 ninth, striking out two. Collin Balester would take the lost, as he only went an inning and a third, giving up seven earned runs on seven hits. Jason Bergmann would pitch two and one third innings, giving up no runs on one hit. Charlie Manning would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Garrett Mock would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Mike Hinckley would pitch two thirds of an inning, giving up an unearned run on one hit. Jesus Colome would pitch an inning and a third, giving up no runs on no hits.

The Phillies’ offense would bust the game open early in the first two innings, via a three-run home run by Ryan Howard and a three-run double by Chase Utley. With this big runs support, Joe Blanton would be able to mow down the Nationals, getting most of them out via a large number of ground ball outs. The score is closer than it actually should have been, as one National run would come in thanks in part to a Carlos Ruiz pass ball on a Blanton pitch, and their second and third runs would cross the plate because of Ryan Howard’s fielding error on a ball that was hit straight to him. Whatever Charlie Manuel has told his men during their afternoon meeting must’ve worked as they would score several very early runs.

The Phillies (90-70) will continue their final three games home stand of the regular season with the Nationals (59-100) with a game this afternoon, which will be nationally televised by Fox Sports. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be the 45 years old veteran Jamie Moyer (15-7, 3.78), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on September 21, where he went six innings, giving up only one earned run on six scattered hits, in the Phillies’ 5-2 win. In his last start against the Nats on August 21, he would receive a no-decision as he went six and one third innings, giving up just an earned run on five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-3 lost. He will be trying for both his team leading sixteenth victory and to clinch the Phillies into the playoffs, if the Marlins don’t defeat the Mets earlier in the day. The Nationals will send to the mound John Lannan (9-14, 3.86), who is coming off a lost to the Padres on September 20, when he went seven innings, giving up four runs, only one of which was earned, on four hits, in the Nationals’ 6-1 lost. In his last two starts against the Phillies, his record is 0-2, where he pitched a combined total of eleven and two-thirds innings, giving up eight earned runs on fourteen hits. He will be trying to get his tenth victory while trying to see if he can stop the Phillies’ clinching celebration for one more day.

The Phillies are now ahead of the Mets in the East by two games after their lost to the Marlins, leaving the Phillies’ magic number to win the division at one. In the Wild Card race, the Brewers are now leading the Mets by one game as they defeated the Cubs, with their magic number to clinch the Wild Card now at two. The Phillies could clnch the East Saturday afternoon, with the clinching party being seen on national television, if the Mets haven’t already lost to the Marlins by then. Whatever happens, the Phillies need to take care of their own buisness and defeat the Nationals. GO PHILLIES!!!!

The Phillies-Brewers game has been postponed because of rain.

The second game between the Phillies (80-67) and the Brewers (83-64, 2nd National League Central, 1st NL Wild Card) has been postponed because of rain. Although no make up game has yet been scheduled, since both teams have the day off this upcoming Monday, it’ll more than likely be made up on that date. The next game in the four games series will be played tomorrow afternoon. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern, and will be shown nationally on Fox Sports. The Phillies’ starter will most likely be their ace Cole Hamels (12-9, 3.12), who is coming off a disastrous start against the Mets on September 7, where he only went five innings, giving up four earned runs on nine hits, in the Phils’ 6-3 lost. Lifetime against the Brewers, he is 1-1 with a 4.76 ERA in four starts. He will be trying once again for his thirteenth win, while trying to see if he can keep the slumping Brewers’ bats quiet and put the Brewers into panic mode with a win against them. The Brewers will likely counter with Manny Parra (10-7, 4.03), who is coming off a lost against the Padres on September 7, as he goes five innings, giving up six runs, only one of which was earned, on six hits, in the Brewers’ 10-1 lost. He will be trying to see if he can stop the Brewers present slide while trying to stop the Phillies from getting any closer to them in the wild card race.

Because of the rain out, the Philles are presently still three games behind the Mets, as the Mets, in a rain delay in New York, prepare to play the Braves. The Phillies are ahead of the Marlins by five and a half games as the fish play the Nationals in Miami. In the wild card chase, the Phillies trail the Brewers by three games as they continue their series, while they are still tied with the Astros for second place in the wild card race as they now wait out Hurricane Ivan for the next two days before facing the Cubs on the 14th, while they are both ahead of the Cardinals by a game and a half as they play the Pirates, which is also in a rain delay. The Phillies hope to be able to gain ground in both the East and in the wild card race.

Updates: The rain out will be made up tomorrow as part of a day/night doubleheader. The Mets were also rained out, so the Phillies are still trailing the Mets by three games in the East, as the Mets prepared to face the Braves this afternoon. The Phillies are now ahead of the Marlins by five games as they defeated the Nationals, who they will be playing again tonight. In the wild card chase, as the Phils and Brewers prepare for this afternoon’s game, the Astros have to wait one more day before they can play the Cubs thanks to Hurricane Ivan. The Cardinals are now trailing both the Phillies and the Astros by two games as they lost to the Pirates, whom they will be playing again tonight.