Cole Hamels threw seven and one third innings of shut out ball, as the Phillies rebound to defeat the Nationals, 4-0. After a scoreless first, and after the Phillies have gone 1-2-3 in the top of the second, the Natonals would threaten to take the lead in their half of the second. After Ronnie Belliard started the inning off with a single, Elijah Dukes would follow with a ground-rule double, sending Belliard to third, and putting runners on second and third with no one out. But the next batter would then lined out into a double play, 8 to 4, doubling up Dukes at second. Phillies’ starter Cole Hamels would then get Alberto Gonzalez to ground out, 4 to 3, to end the inning, with the score still nothing to nothing. The Phillies would then break the tied in the third inning as, with a runner on second and two outs, Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI single, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who was safe at first on a force out and then have gone to second on Hamels’ sacrifice bunt, beating left fielder Willie Harris’ throw to the plate, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead, while Rollins would go on to second on the throw. Chase Utley would then follow with a RBI single, scoring Rollins, and giving the Phils a 2-0 lead. Jayson Werth would then follow with the third straight single of the inning, sending Utley to third. With the count 1-0 to Ryan Howard, Nationals’ starter John Lannard would throw to first, trying to pick off Werth. On the play, Utley broke for home. Nationals’ first baseman Belliard would then throw home, where the ball is caught by Jesus Flores. Flores is then bowl over by Utley, but held onto the ball as he tags Utley out for the third out of the inning. Flores would then lie on the ground for a while, as him appear to have gotten injured on the play, as his spiked right shoe would not let go of the ground during the collision at the plate. He would eventually be taken off the field in a cart. The Phillies would then add to their lead in the seventh, as the Nats replaced Lannard with Levale Speigner. Pedro Feliz would greet him with a single, followed by a single by Ruiz, which would place Feliz on second base, with no one out. Hamels would then move the runners as he grounded out, third to first, putting runners on second and third with one man out. Rollins would folow with a RBI single, scoring Feliz, making it 3-0 Phillies, and sending Ruiz to third. The Nats then replace Speigner with Mike Hinckley. Utley would greet him by hitting a grounder to second baseman Anderson Hernandez who would throw out Utley for out number two. Belliard would then throw to the Nats’ shortstop Gonzalez, trapping Rollins between first and second. Rollins would stay in the basepath long enough for Ruiz to score the Phils’ fourth run before he is finally tagged out by Hinckley for out number three. In the meantime, Hamels would keep the Nats’ under control, striking out six batters, before an one out single by Hernandez would lead to Hamels being replaced by J.C. Romero. Romero would then proceed to strike out Harris for the inning’s second out. Romero is then taken out and is replaced by Chad Durbin. He would end the inning by getting Ryan Zimmerman to hit into a force out for the inning’s final out. Brad Lidge would then come out to pitch the ninth. After giving up a lead off triple to Lastings Milledge, he would get the next three hitters out to end the game.
Cole Hamels would get the win as he pitches seven and one third shut out innings, giving up only five hits and strking out six batters. His record is now 12-8 with a 3.01 ERA. J.C. Romero and Chad Durbin would each pitch a third of an inning, giving up no hits between them. Brad Lidge would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. John Lannan would take the lost as he pitches six innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits. His record is now 8-13 with a 3.88 ERA. Levale Speigner would pitch a third of an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Mike Hinckley would pitch one and two-thirds innings, giving up no runs on no hits. Garrett Mock would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits.
Although getting very few hits in the ballgame, the Phillies’ offense would get enough of them to knock in enough runs to win the game. With last night’s game, Hamels would reach two hundred innings’ pitched for the first time in his young career, with more to come before the season is over. J.C. Romero and Chad Durbin, in the meantime, would come in to help get the Phils through the eighth inning after Hamels is unable to get the second out of the inning.
The Phillies (76-63) will end their three games series with the Nationals (53-86) with a night game. The game will be played at Nationals Park and wil start at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Joe Blanton (6-12 (1-0), 4.69), who is coming off another no-decision, this time against the Cubs on August 29, going five and two-thirds innings, giving up only two earned runs on two hits, in the Phillies’ 3-2 lost. Blanton will be trying to get his second win as a Phil while trying to go deeper into the ballgame. The Nationals’ starter will be Odalis Perez (6-10, 4.14), who is coming off a win against the Braves on August 29, as he went six and a third innings, giving up only two earned runs on seven hits, in the Nationals’ 7-3 win. He will be trying to improve his record while also trying to win the seres for the Nats.
The Phillies remain two games behind the Mets as they once again defeated the Brewers, while they stay six games ahead of the now fading Marlins as they lost to the Braves. The Phillies will try to win the present series with the Nationals before heading to New York to face the Mets for the last time this season.
Kyle Kendrick once again can not get past the fourth inning as he would give up four runs in that inning to a presently red-hot Nationals squad as the Phillies lose once more to Tim Redding, 7-4. The Phillies’ batters, who acted a bit more patiently at the plate than they normally would with Redding, would start the game off by putting two men on base (Jimmy Rollins (Walk) and Chase Utley (Hit by the Pitch)) with one man out in the first inning, before the pair would both move up a base on a Redding’s throwing error, as he tried to pick off Rollins at second. Sadly, that would be as far as they would get as Redding would get out of the inning by striking out Ryan Howard and then getting Jayson Werth to fly out. The same can not be said of Kyle Kendrick, as, with runners on second and third and one out, he would give up a two-run single to Lastings Milledge, scoring Cristian Guzman, who was safe at first on a force out, and Ryan Zimmerman, who has walked, and have both moved up a base on a Kendrick’s wild pitch, to make it 2-0 Nationals. As the Phillies’ batters continue to be patient, thus raising Redding’s pitch count, but be unable to get a hit off of him, Kendrick would continue to have control problems, until finally, in the bottom of the third, he would throw two piches to the inside of Zimmerman, the first Nats’ batter of the inning, which would both almost hit him, especially with the second one, as it would almost hit him in the head. This would cause the home plate umpire to give him a warning that the next man he would throw out would lead to an ejection. That would later hurt Kendrick as he would now no longer throw to the inside of right handed batters. Kendrick would then get hurt in the fourth. He would start the inning off by giving up singles to both Jesus Flores and Emilio Bonifacio, giving the Nationals runners on first and second. Redding would then attempt to bunt the pair over, but Kendrick would throw out Flores at third for the inning’s first out, as Greg Dobbs would beat him to the bag, while Bonifacio would be safe at second as Redding would be safe at first on the force out. Kendrick would then pick off Bonifacio, throwing to third base where he is tagged out by Dobbs for the second out of the inning. Now seeing a chance to get out of the inning, Kendrick would instead get bombed by the next three batters. First, Willie Harris would hit a long, high, fly ball to right that new Phil Matt Stairs would lose sight of for a while so that when the ball finally hit off of the wall, it would bounce over his head, allowing Harris to reach third with a triple as Redding scored to give the Nationals a 3-0 lead. Guzman would then follow with a double, knocking in Harris, to make it 4-0 Nats. Zimmerman would come up next and hit a two-run home run, his tenth home run of the year, scoring Guzman, to make it 6-0 Nationals. The Phillies would finally get to Redding in the sixth, as, with a runner on third and two outs, Howard would hit a RBI double, scoring Shane Victorino, who has hit an infield single, the Phillies’ first hit of the game, would steal second and then go to third on Nationals’ catcher’s Flores’ throwing error, to make it 6-1 Nationals. After walking Werth to put two men on base, Redding would be taken out of the game and replaced by Charlie Manning. Manning would proceed to walk pinch hitter Pedro Feliz to load the bases. Manning is then taken out of the game and is replaced by Marco Estrada. Estrada would then walk pinch hitter Pat Burrell, scoring Howard, to make the score 6-2 Nats. Chris Coste would then get hit by the pitch, forcing in Feliz, to make it 6-3 Nats. Estrada would finally get out of the inning as pinch hitter Carlos Ruiz would ground out, third to first. The Nats would get one of the runs back in the seventh, as, with a runner on second and two men outs, Flores would hit a RBI double, scoring Elijah Dukes, would has earlier reached base with an infield single and would go to second on Rollins’ throwing error, to make it 7-3 Nationals. Then in the ninth, with two men out, Rollins would hit a solo home run, his tenth home run of the year, to make it 7-4 Nats. But, that would be it as Victorino would follow with a grounder to the first baseman for the game’s final out.
Kyle Kendrick would take the lost as he would once more be unable to pitch past the fourth inning, as he goes four innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits and three walks. His record is now 11-8 with a 5.06 ERA. J.A. Happ would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit while striking out two. Clay Condrey would pitch an inning, giving up an unearned run on two hits, while also striking out two. Rudy Seanez would also pitch an inning, giving up no runs on one hit. Tim Redding would get the win, as he would go five and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on two hits. His record is now 10-8 with an ERA of 4.55. Charlie Manning would face only one batter, walking him. Marco Estrada would pitch a third of an inning, walking a batter. Saul Rivera would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Steven Shell would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Jesus Colome would pitch an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit while striking out two hitters.
And once again, Kyle Kendrick’s recent fears of getting hit by the opposing batters has done him in, as he once again doesn’t challenge the hitters. It would appear that whatever advice that he has gotten from Greg Maddux several days back has been quickly forgotten. Maybe having Kendrick miss a start and having Rich Dubee and Jamie Moyer both talk to him in the meantime might be in order if he is going to help the team recapture the pennant. Otherwise, the Phillies are in trouble.
The Phillies (75-63) will continue their three games series with the Nationals (53-85) tomorrow night. The game will be played at Nationals Park and will begin at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (11-8, 3.13), who is coming off a no-decision against the Cubs on August 28 as he would pitch seven innings, giving up only one earned run on five hits while striking out six, in the Phillies’ 6-4 lost. Lifetime against the Nats, he is 4-3 with a 2.25 ERA in eleven starts. He will be trying for his third straight win and his fourth straight quality start while trying to stop the Nats’ present winning streak at seven. The Nationals’ starter will be John Lannan (8-12, 3.92), who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on August 28, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits, in the Nationals’ 11-2 win. He will be trying to improve his record while continuing the Nationals’ winning streak.
With the lost, the Phillies now trail the Mets by two games as they came from behind to defeat the Brewers. The Phllies are ahead of the Marlins by five games as they defeated the Braves. The Phillies will be trying to recover from this afternoon’s lost and try to stop the Nationals’ attempt to be a spolier.
Ryan Madison blows a save opportunity in the eight inning as he runs into some buzzard luck as the Phillies are denied a sweep of the Nationals, losing 4-3. The first five innings of the game would involve a pitchers’ duel between veteran Jamie Moyer and the Nationals’ starter Tim Redding. Moyer would only give up a single and two walks in the first five innings, while Redding would give up just a single and a walk, while at one point getting out twelve Phils in a row. The Nationals would finally break the scoreless tie in the sixth, when, with two men on, and one out, Lastings Milledge would hit a grounder to third. Pedro Feliz, who was reactived last night, would throw to second base, forcing out Cristian Guzman, who has gotten on base with a single, for the innings’ second out, but Guzman’s take out slide would cause Chase Utley to throw widely of first for a throwing error, an error that Ryan Howard could have prevented by getting off the bag to block the ball, which would allow Anderson Hernandez, who has earlier singled and has moved to second on Guzman’s single, to score, giving the Nats a 1-0 lead, as Milledge would be safe on the error, moving up to second on the errant throw. Moyer would end the inning by getting Ronnie Belliard to ground out, short to first. The Phillies would tie it in their half of the inning, when, with a runner on second and two out Chase Utley would single in Jayson Werth, who has earlier doubled. The Nats would retake the lead in the seventh, when, with runners on second and third, and two outs, Moyer would give up a RBI single to Hernandez off of Jimmy Rollins’ glove, scoring Austin Kearns, who has earlier walked and has gone to third on Willie Harris’ single, to give the Nats a 2-1 lead. That would be it for Moyer, as he would be taken out for Chad Durbin, while being given a standing ovation by the fans for his effort. Durbin would quickly end the inning by geting Guzman to ground out to first base. The Phillies would then strike back in their half of the inning, as, with one out, Shane Victorino would get an infield single and then go to third on Ryan Zimmerman’s two-base throwing error. Victorino would then score on pitch hitter Greg Dobbs’ ground out on the drawn in infied, second to first, to tie the score at two. The Phillies would then take the lead on Carlos Ruiz’s solo home run, his third home run of the year, to give the Phillies a 3-2 lead. The lead would then vanish in the eighth inning, as Ryan Madson would run into some buzzard luck while on the mound. It would start when Zimmerman hit a ground ball to third, which would hit the third base bag and then bounce high into the air, before it finally came down to be caught by Feliz, who by then would have no play at first as Zimmerman would get an infield single. The next batter, Milledge, would then pop a fly ball into right field that would fall in for a hit, putting runners on first and second with no body out. After Belliard bunts the runners over to second and third for the inning’s first out, Jesus Flores would get an infield single off of Utley’s glove, tying the game at three all, and putting runners on the corners. Kearns would then hit a hard ball up the middle for a single, scoring Milledge, giving the Nationals a 4-3 lead, and moving Flores to second. Madson is then replaced with J.C. Romero. Romero would proceed to end the inning by striking out Harris and pinch hitter Wil Nieves. The Phillies would threaten to tie the game in both the eighth and the ninth, but would be unable to get a key hit as Nats’ closer Joel Hanrahan would come in to pitch two innings of shut out ball, recording his fourth save of the year and ending the Nats’ twelve games losing streak.
Jamie Moyer would get a no-decision as he pitched six and two-thirds innings, giving up two runs, only one of which was earned, on five hits. Chad Durbin would pitch a third of an inning, getting out the only man he would face. Ryan Madson would get the lost as he blew his second save, going a third of an inning, giving up two earned runs on four hits, only one of which was actually a clean hit ball. His record is now 3-2 with an ERA of 3.38. J.C. Romero would go two-thirds of an inning, striking out both man that he would face. Clay Condrey pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk. Tim Redding would also get a no-decision, as he pitched six innings, giving up only one earned run on three hits. Saul Rivera would get the win while also receiving his fifth blown save of the year, as he pitches an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Joel Hanrahan would record his fourth save as he pitched two innings of shut out ball, giving up two hits and a walk while striking out one as he kept the Phillies from being able to tie the game.
The Phillies’ bullpen would be as much of a culprit in last night’s lost as was the Phillies’ offense, which did not do anything until the bottom of the sixth inning, and would once again be unable to get the key hit in the eighth and ninth innings. But in Madson’s defense, he got hit by what I tend to call buzzard luck. What I mean by that is that things happen that at any other time would not happen, and seems to happen to the Phillies once too many times. The ground ball that would hit the third base bag and go up into the air for an infield hit, the pop up that would drop in between Chase Utley and Jayson Werth before either of them could reach the ball and the infield single off of Utley’s glove that would allow the tying run to score in the eighth, along with the single off of Rollins’ glove in the previous seventh inning, are all examples of buzzard luck. It drives me nuts when that happens, since I know that I have no one to blame for those situations other than dame luck, and even then, you can’t blame her when the situation is just plain goofy. So, while Madson blew the save and got the loss, it was mainly because he got hit with buzzard luck.
The Phillies (68-59) will start a four games series tonight with the Dodgers (65-62, 2nd National League West). The first game of the series will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Kyle Kendrick (10-7, 5.01), who is coming off his second straight bad start against the Padres on August 16, where he is only able to go three and two-thirds innings, giving up six earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 8-3 lost. His only start against the Dodgers this year, on August 11, would be an equally rough start, as he would go only three and a third innings, giving up seven earned runs on nine hits, in the Phillies’ 8-6 lost. He will be looking to rebound from those two loses, trying to regain his agressiveness and trying to get his eleventh win of the season. His opponent, returning like a horror film nightmare, is Phillies’ killer Greg Maddux (6-9, 3.99), who has just been acquired by the Dodgers to take the place of injured starter Brad Penny. His last start was against the Phillies for the Padres on August 15, where he would pitch seven innings, giving up only an earned run on five hits, in the Padres’ 1-0 lost. This would be his first start as a Dodgers, but he would have faced the Phillies in two starts for the Padres, going 0-2 as he would pitch thirteen and a third innings, giving up five earned runs on thirteen hits. He will be trying for his first win this year against the Philles while trying to make it five straight wins against the Phillies for the Dodgers.
The Phillies are now trailing the Mets by two and a half games, thanks to last night’s lost, while the Mets prepare for a four games series with the Astros in New York. The Phillies are ahead of the Marlins by three and a half games, as the fish prepare for a three games series with the D-backs in Phoenix. The Phillies hope to regain some ground in the East while trying to get even with the Dodgers for last week’s sweep.
The Phillies have completed their sweep of the last place Nationals as Kyle Kendrick goes six and two-thirds innings to record his ninth win of the year as the Phillies defeated the Nats, 8-4. The Phillies would take the lead in the second inning as Jayson Werth hits a solo home run, his fifteenth home run of the year, to give the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. Four batters later, with runners on second and third, and one out, Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI ground ball, third to first, scoring Eric Bruntlett, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, making it 2-0 Phillies. The next batter, Shane Victorino, would also hit a ground ball to the third baseman, but Ryan Zimmerman would this time throw the ball away trying to get the out at first, allowing Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier singled, to score on the throwing error, giving the Phillies a 3-0 lead, and allowing Victorino to reach second base. In the bottom of the second, Kory Casto would score the Nationals’ first run on a Kyle Kendrick wild pitch, after getting on base with a double, and going to third on a ground out, short to first, to make it a 3-1 Phillies’ lead. The Nationals would make it a 3-2 Phils’ lead as Jesus Flores would hit a RBI single, knocking in Zimmerman, who has reached base earlier after being hit by a pitched ball. The Phillies would increase their lead in the fourth to 5-2 as Rollins would hit a two-run home run, his ninth home run of the year, scoring Kendrick, who has earlier reached first base on catcher Jesus Flores’ throwing error to first after Kendrick has struck out on a pitch that Flores has to block in the dirt. Then in the sixth, with a runner on second, and two outs, Victorino would get a single on a hard grounder to the third baseman, reaching first safely on Ronnie Belliard’s throwing error, while Rollins, who has doubled earlier, would score on the error, to make it 6-2 Phillies. Ryan Howard would two batters later get a RBI single, scoring Victorino, giving the Phillies a 7-2 lead. Pat Burrell would follow with a RBI single, scoring Chase Utley, who has earlier singled, to give the Phillies an 8-2 lead. In the ninth, with Rudy Seanez on the mound, the Nationals tried to create a very late rally. Pete Orr would start the inning off with a single. Pinch hitter Felipe Lopez would follow with a double, putting Orr on third. Willie Harris would then hit a RBI ground ball to first base for the inning’s first out, scoring Orr, while moving Lopez to third, making it an 8-3 Phillies’ lead. Lasting Milledge would then hit a slow ball towards first, that Seanez would grab before he tags out Milledge for the second out of the inning, while Lopez scores, giving the Phillies an 8-4 lead. After a walk to Ryan Langerhans, Charlie Manuel would come out and replace Seanez with Chad Durbin. Durbin would then end the game by getting Austin Kearns to fly out to left.
Kyle Kendrick would get the win, as he pitches six and two-thirds innings of strong ball, giving up only two earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 9-5 with a 4.59 ERA. Clay Condrey would pitch an inning and a third of shut out ball, giving up no hits. Rudy Seanez would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on two hits. Chad Durbin would pitch to only one batter, getting him to fly out. John Lannan would get the lost, lasting five and two-thirds innings, giving up eight runs, six of which were earned, on nine hits. His record would fall to 6-11 with a ERA of 3.61. Chris Manning would pitch to one batter, giving up a hit. Garrett Mock would pitch an inning and a third, giving up a hit and no runs. Jesus Colome would go two innings, giving up no runs on no hits.
The Phillies have completed their first sweep of the second half, while winning their fifth straight game. This is the fourth game during their winning streak that the Phillies’ offense have knocked in eight runs or more, while getting three extra-bases hits (1 (2B), 2 (HR)). This is also the first time in a while that the Phillies have been ten games over .500 since Interleague play. The Phillies would end July with a 15-10 record. The Phillies hope that their rejuvenated offense will continue in St. Louis, the city where their dangerous offense would begin to disappear back in mid-June.
The Phillies (59-49) will now go on to St. Louis to play the Cardinals (61-50, 2nd-T National League Central) in a three games weekend series. The first game of the series will be played in the new Busch Stadium and will start at 8:15 pm Eastern (7:15 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be their ace Cole Hamels (9-6, 3.27), who is coming off a bad outing against the Braves on July 26, where he would get a no-decision as he would only last three and two-thirds innings, giving up nine runs, only four of which would be earned, in the Phillies’ 10-9 win. He has already faced the Cardinals once before this year on July 8, losing that game as he went seven innings, giving up just two earned runs on three hits, in the Phillies’ 2-0 lost. He will for his fifth straight start try for his tenth win of the year, while trying to increase the Phillies’ present winning streak to six games. The Cardinals will counter with Kyle Lohse (12-3, 3.68), who is coming off a lost against the Mets on July 27, pitching five innings as he gave up seven earned runs on eleven hits, in the Cardinals’ 9-1 lost. He has already faced the Phils once before back on June 14, winning the game as he goes eight innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits, in the Cardinals’ 3-2 win. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to silence the Phillies’ bats.
With the win, the Phillies’ lead over the Mets is now a game, as the Mets gets ready to play the Astros for a three games series in Houston. The Phillies’ lead over the Marlins is now at one and a half games, as they continue their four games series with the Rockies. Their lead over the Braves stay at nine games, as they start a three games series with the Brew Crew. The Phillies will be trying to increase their lead in the East while increasing their winning streak to six wins in a row.
Jamie Moyer records his tenth win of the year and the 240th victory in his long career, while leading the Phillies back into first place over the Mets as the Phillies defeat the woeful Nationals, 8-5. The Phillies would finally score some runs off of their nemesis Tim Redding as Pat Burrell would hit a two-run single, knocking in both Shane Victorino and Chase Utley, who have both singled earlier, to give the Phillies a quick 2-0 lead. In the Nationals’ half of the first, they would take the lead. Willie Harris would score the Nats’ first run as he hit Moyer’s first pitch out of the park for his eighth home run of the year, to cut the Phillies’ lead to 2-1. Three batters later, wirh a runner on second, and with one out, Jesus Flores would hit a two-run home run, his seventh home run of the year, scoring Austin Kearns, who has doubled earlier, to give the Nationals a 3-2 lead. The next three innings would see a pitchers’ duel between the veteran and the youngster, that would keep the score at 3-2 until the top of the fifth when the Phillies would get to Redding again. Carlos Ruiz would start the inning off with a single. Ruiz would then go to second on a walk to Moyer, as Redding would be unable to throw a strike as Moyer has originally gone up to the plate to put down a sacrifice bunt. Jimmy Rollins would follow with a double, scoring Ruiz to tie the game at three all, while sending Moyer over to third. The Phils would then retake the lead as Victorino would hit a two-run RBI single, scoring both Moyer and Rollins to make it 5-3 Phillies. Utley would then end the scoring as he would hit a two-run shot, for his twenty-seventh home run of the year, to make it 7-3 Phillies. After the home run, Redding would be taken out of the ballgame. The Phillies would add one more run in the seventh, as Victorino would hit a solo shot for his ninth home run of the year, to make it an 8-3 Phillies’ lead. In the bottom of the seventh, with runners on second and third and one man out, Lastings Milledge, would hit a RBI ground out, short to first, for the second out of the inning, scoring Pete Orr, who has gotten on base earlier via a force out, to make it an 8-4 Phillies’ lead. Roy Zimmerman would then follow with a RBI ground rule double that was misplayed by Jayson Werth, who would fall down when trying to make the play, scoring Harris, who has earlier doubled, to give the Phillies an 8-5 lead. That would be how the game would end as Brad Lidge would come into his fifth straight game (in six days) and records his twenty-sixth save of the years in as many tries.
Jamie Moyer would get the win, as he pitches another quality start, as he goes six inning, giving up only three earned runs, all in the first inning, on six hits. His record is now 10-6 with an ERA of 3.79. Ryan Madson would pitch an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Chad Durbin would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, recording his twenty-sixth straight save, as he pitched a scoreless inning, while giving up just one hit. Tim Redding would take the lost as he would go only four innings plus five batters as he would get hammered for seven earned runs on ten hits. His record is now 7-6 with a 4.34 ERA. Steven Shell would pitch three innings, giving up an earned run on one hit. Luis Ayala would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up one hit. Jesus Colome would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits.
The Phillies’ offense would finally unload on Tim Redding, knocking in seven runs on ten hits, with only two of them being for extra-bases, a double and a home run, before they finally knocked him out of the box in the fifth. For the fourth time in as many games, the Phils would score five or more runs in an inning. It would seem that the offense is finally back, and if it is, I feel sorry for the rest of the league. Now, if they would just become more consistent with their runs production. Meanwhile, with the win, Jamie Moyer become the Phillies’ first ten games winner for 2008. He has also won his 240th career victory, while needing just ten more wins to reach 250. He has also pitched another quality start, giving up no runs for five innings after giving up three runs on a pair of home runs in the first, being helped by a couple of double play balls.
The once more first place Phillies (58-49) will conclude their three games series with the woeful Nationals (38-69) later tonight. The game will be played in Nationals Park and will start at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Kyle Kendrick (8-5, 4.70), who would pitch a quality start in a game that would end up being a lost against the Braves on July 25, as he would go six innings, giving up only an earned run on seven hits, in the Phillies’ 8-2 lost. He will be trying for his ninth win while trying to increase the Phillies’ lead in the East. The Nationals’ starter will be John Lannan (6-10, 3.33), who is coming off a lost to the Dodgers on July 25, going seven innings as he gives up three earned runs on six hits, in the Nationals’ 3-2 lost. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to stop the Nationals’ present losing streak.
The Phillies now lead the Mets by a half game and the Marlins by one and a half games as the Mets lost their game to the Marlins. The Braves now trails the Phils by nine games as they’d lose again to the Cardinals, their fifth lost in a row. As the Phillies try for their fifth straight win, the Mets will take the day off, the Marlins will face the Rockies for the first of four games in Miami and the Braves will end their four game series with the redbirds. The Phillies will be going for their fifth straight victory and their first sweep of the second half, while also trying to increase the lead on the Mets.
For the second straight game, the Phillies were involved in a shut out. Only this time, they were the ones to come out on top, but just barely, as they defeated the Nationals 1-0. Cole Hamels would pitch seven strong innings, as he gives up no runs to the Nats, on four hits, while striking out eleven batters. Hamels has now pitched nineteen straight scoreless innings, going back to the last three innings of his May 9 start against the Giants. The Phils’ offense has been kept from scoring for just as many innings, not scoring a run for seventeen and two-thirds innings, as it continues, until the top of the ninth, to leave men on base, in this case nine runners, with four of them in scoring position, in the first eight innings, as Tom Bergmann and Saul Rivera would both find ways to keep them from scoring. The Phillies would finally get a run across in the ninth inning, when, with the Nats’ closer Jon Rauch pitching, Pedro Feliz would start the inning off with a double. After Eric Bruntlett comes in to pinch run for Feliz, Carlos Ruiz would sacrifice him over to third, putting the winning run on third base with one out. Greg Dobbs would then come out to pitch hit for Tom Gordon, who has kept the Nationals from scoring in their half of the eighth, keeping the game scoreless. With the count 2-0, Dobbs would hit a blooping single to center field, scoring Bruntlett and giving the Phillies a 1-0 lead. After Jimmy Rollins flies out, Shane Victorino would hit a double to center field. But, Dobbs would be tagged out at home plate, thanks to a strong throw from Lastings Milledge to shortstop Cristian Guzman to catcher Jesus Flores, who would block the plate, thus keeping Dobbs from scoring. This would keep the score 1-0 Phils. Brad Lidge would pitch the bottom of the ninth in relief of Gordon. After striking out the first two batters he faced, he would walk Elijah Dukes with the count full. Dukes would then proceed to steal second and third, before Lidge would walk pitch hitter Rob Mackowiak, also on a full count, giving the Nationals runners on the corners, with the winning run on first. Then on the first pitch to Felipe Lopez, Lopez would hit a grounder to Chase Utley. Utley would bobble the ball before finally throwing out a slow moving Lopez to end the game and preserve the victory for the Phillies as Lidge records his eleventh save in as many tries.
Cole Hamels, with his seven innings of shut out ball, would get a no-decision while dropping his ERA to 2.61. Tom Gordon, pitching an inning of relief, would get the win as he gives up no runs on one hit. His record is now 4-2, with an ERA of 4.26. Brad Lidge records his eleventh save of the year as he goes one full innings, giving up no runs on no hits, striking out two while also walking two. Tom Bergmann would also get a no-decision as he pitches seven innings, giving up no runs while scattering five hits. Saul Rivera would pitch an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Jon Rauch would take the lost, giving up an earned run on three hits. His record is now 2-1, with a 2.78 ERA.
The Phils’ offense, expected to be the best run producer in the National League this year, is scoring less runs than expected, while the batters have suddenly stopped getting the key hit. Maybe having the offense play some small ball for a few games might be what the doctor ordered, else the starters will soon find themselves in for a lot of long games without offensive support. And, considering how some of them are pitching right now (I’m talking to you Myers and Eaton), that might end up meaning a bullpen weaken from overwork by September.
The Phillies (25-22) will conclude their trip to the nation’s capitol with a night game tonight from Nationals Park. The game will start at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (3-3, 4.89), who is coming off of a good outing against the Toronto Blue Jays on May 16, where he went six and two-thirds innings, giving up only three earned runs on seven hits, in the Phils’ 10-3 victory. He hopes to improve his record while trying to help the Phils win the series as he pitches in the 46th ballpark in his 22 years career. The Nationals (20-27) will counter with Matt Chico (0-5, 6.07), who they are using in place of Shawn Hill, who has an ailing right elbow. Chico is coming out of the bullpen, where he was demoted after losing five of his six starts earlier this season. Coming out of the bullpen, he would appear in three games, where he would pitch six and one third innings, giving up just one earned run on six hits, as his ERA drops from 6.87 to 6.07. He hopes to win his first start of the year while adding to the Phils’ offensive problems, while the Phils hopes to final break out the bats and start scoring runs.
The Phils’ victory keeps them a game of a half behind the Florida Marlins, who won their game against the Diamondbacks, 3-2. The Phils are technically still tied for second place, but now they are a .001 percentage point behind the Atlanta Braves, who have swept a double header from the New York Mets, by scores of 6-1 and 6-2. The losts put the Mets in fourth place, a game behind both the Phils and the Braves. The Phils hopes to get a win tonight, to keep pace with both the Marlins and the Braves and stay ahead of the Mets in the tight National League East.