In a wild game, the Phils hold on in the ninth as Jose Contreras pitches himself out of a two on, two out, jam, to defeat the Cubs, 5-4.
The Phils took a quick 1-0 lead as, with two men out, Chase Utley hits a solo home run, his tenth home run of the season. The Cubs tied the game up at one-all in the fifth as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Starlin Castro hits an RBI single, scoring Alfonso Soriano, who had earlier doubled, and then went to third on a Mike Fontenot ground out, 3-unassisted. The Phils regained the lead in the sixth as, with two men on, and with two men out, Jimmy Rollins hit a three-run bomb, knocking in Placido Polanco, who had earlier doubled, and Utley, who had just walked, giving the Phils a 4-1 lead. The Cubs then comes back in the seventh as, with nobody out, Derrek Lee hits a lead-off home run, his fifth home run of the year, making it a 4-2 Phils’ lead. Four batters later, with the bases loaded via a walk to Soriano and singles to Fontenot and Castro, and with one man out, pinch hitter Tyler Colvin hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Soriano, making it a 4-3 Phils’ lead, while sending Fontenot to third. The Cubs then tied it up at four-all in the eighth as, with nobody out, Kosuke Fukudome hits a lead-off home run, his sixth home run of the season. The Phils retook the lead in their half of the eighth as, with two men on, and with two men out, Raul Ibanez hits an RBI single, scoring Utley, who had earlier walked, and had moved up to second on Rollins’ walk, giving the Phils a 5-4 lead, while sending Rollins, who had just walked, over to third. That would be the final score as Jose Contreras would records his second save of the season by pitching himself out of a two on, no outs jam by first striking out Castro and Aramis Ramirez and then by getting Geovany Soto to foul out to first to end the ballgame.
Joe Blanton receives a no-decision as he pitches seven strong innings, giving up three runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out three. Antonio Bastardo is credited with his first blown save as he gives up a home run to the only batter that he would face. Danys Baez picks up the win as he pitches a scoreless inning, striking out a batter. His record is now 2-1 with a 5.00 ERA. Jose Contreras records his second save of the season as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and hitting a batter, while striking out two. Ryan Dempster also receives a no-decision as he pitches six innings, giving up four runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out three. James Russell and Jeff Stevens combines for one and a third scoreless inning, giving up a hit (Russell) between them. John Grabow took the lost as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on a hit and two walks. His record is now 0-3 with a 8.44 ERA.
The Phils had seven hits in the game, with Placido Polanco and Raul Ibanez having two hits a piece, with Polanco’s hits being a double and a single, with him scoring a run, while Ibanez’s hits were both singles, with him knocking in a run. Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and pinch hitter Ben Francisco having the other three Phils’ hits, with Utley and Rollins’ hits being home runs, Utley’s a solo shot, and Rollins’ a three-run dinger, while Francisco’s hit was a single.
The Phils (25-15, 1st National League East) will conclude their home stand with three interleague series games with the Red Sox (22-20, 4th American League East). The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound Cole Hamels (4-2, 4.29), who is coming off a win against the Brewers on May 16, when he pitched six and two-third innings, giving up two runs on six hits and three walks, while he struck out three, in the Phils’ 4-2 win. Hamels will be going for his third win in a row and his third strong start in his last four. The Bosox will counter with John Lackey (4-2, 4.86), who is coming off a lost to the Tigers on May 16, as he pitched seven innings, giving up five runs on nine hits and four walks, while striking out four, in the Bosox’s 5-1 lost. He will be trying to make the Phils’ night a long one. The Phils will be trying to start Interleague Play this year on a high note.
The Phils continue their recent winning ways at home, as they crush the Cubs, 10-1, increasing their winning streak at home to six games and their overall winning streak to nine. They are now a .500 team (23-23) at home.
The Phils took an early lead in the first as, with two men on, and two men out, Raul Ibanez hits a three-run home run, his twenty-fifth home run of the year, knocking in Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier singled, and then went to third on Shane Victorino’s double, and Victorino, who had earlier doubled, making it 3-0 Phils. The Phils increased their lead in the second as, with one man on, and nobody out, Carlos Ruiz hits a two-run home run, his fourth home run of the year, knocking in Pedro Feliz, who had just walked, making it 5-0 Phils. The Phils would then bust it wide open in the fourth. With two men on, and nobody out, Ruiz hits an RBI double, knocking in Jayson Werth, who had earlier walked and had gone to second on Feliz’s single, making it a 6-0 Phils’ lead, and sending Feliz, who had earlier singled, to third. Two batters later, now with one man out, Rollins hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Feliz, giving the Phils a 7-0 lead, while Ruiz would move up to third. It would become 8-0 Phils as Cubs’ left fielder Alfonso Soriano committed a fielding error on Victorino’s fly ball, allowing Ruiz to score, while Victorino was safe at second on the two-base error. Chase Utley would make it 9-0 Phils with an RBI single, scoring Victorino, before he would be tagged out at second base when he tried to move up to second on the throw, 9-3. The Cubs would get a run back in the fifth as, with a runner on third, and one man out, Ryan Theriot hits an RBI single, scoring Andres Blanco, who had earlier doubled, and then went to third on Kosuke Fukudome’s ground out, 4-3, making it a 9-1 Phils’ lead. Other than that, Phils’ starter Rodrigo Lopez had an easy six innings, as he gave up only one run on five hits and three walks, before handing the ball over to Chad Durbin in the seventh. In the eighth, Ryan Howard made it 10-1 Phils with a lead-off home run, his twenty-fourth home run of the year. Durbin then proceeded to end the game by pitching a scoreless ninth inning as he got Koyie Hill to hit into a 6-4-3 double play, wiping out at second Soriano, who had earlier singled, to record his first save of the year.
Rodrigo Lopez got the win as he pitched six strong innings, giving up only one run on five hits and three walks, as he struck out five. His record is now 2-0 with an ERA of 2.60. Chad Durbin pitched three scoreless inning, giving up only a hit, while striking out two, as he recorded his first save of the year. Ted Lilly took the lost as he went only four innings, giving up nine runs, only seven of which were earned, on eight hits and two walks, as he struck out six. His record is now 9-7 with a 3.59 ERA. Jeff Stevens and Aaron Heilman together pitched three scoreless innings, while striking out two batters (one strikeout apiece). Angel Guzman pitched an inning, giving up a run on one hit while striking out two.
The Phils collected nine hits in the ballgame, with Shane Victorino and Carlos Ruiz leading the way with two hits a piece, with one of Victorino’s hits being a double, while Ruiz’s two hits were a double and a two-run home run, knocking in three runs. Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez and Pedro Feliz had the other five Phils’ hits, with Ibanez’s hit being a three-run home run, and Howard’s being a solo shot. Besides Ibanez and Ruiz’s three RBIs and Howard’s one, Rollins and Utley both knocked in a run, with Rollins’ being on a sac fly. The Phils have now even their record at home as they have won ten of their last eleven home games and thirteen of their last fourteen overall, since being swept by the Braves. They will be trying to make it ten wins in a row tonight.
The Phillies (52-38, 1st National League East) will continue their three-games set with the Cubs (47-44, 2nd National League Central) with a night game. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm. The Phils’ starter will be Joe Blanton (6-4, 4.44) who last start, on July 18 against the Marlins, was cancelled due to rain after he had given up two runs in the first inning. He will once again be going for his seventh win of the season. The Cubs will counter with Rich Harden (6-6, 5.06), who is coming off a win against the Nationals on July 16, when he went six innings, giving up no runs on three hits, while striking out seven, in the Cubs 6-2 win. He will be trying for his seventh win as well, while hoping that he will be able to stop the presently hot Phillies’ offense. The Phils will be going for their tenth win in a row tonight, while trying to further increase their lead in the NL East.