The Phillies, behind a bunch of rookies and bench players, defeated the Nationals, 8-3, ending the 2008 regular season on a high note. They will now be facing the Brewers in the National League Divisional Series starting this coming Wednesday afternoon.
The Phillies took a quick 1-0 lead in the first as, with two men on base and one out, Eric Bruntlett, who has earlier singled and then moved to third on Tadahito Iguchi’s double, would cross the plate on Nationals’ starter Odalis Perez’s wild pitch, while Iguchi would move up to third. The Nationals would tie the game in the third, as the Phillies’ surprise starter Kyle Kendrick would give up a lead-off home run to Luke Montz, his first career home run. The Nationals would then take the lead in the fourth as, with a runner on second and no one out, Kory Casto would hit a RBI double, scoring Anderson Hernandez, who has earlier doubled, to make it 2-1 Nationals. Two batters later, with Casto now on third, after moving up on Ryan Langerhans’ ground out, 4-3, he would score on Alberto Gonzalez’s RBI single, making it 3-1 Nationals. The Phillies would strike back in their half of the fourth, as, with runners on second and third and two outs, So Taguchi would hit a two-run single, scoring Lou Marson, who has earlier singled, his first hit in the majors, and would move up to third on pinch hitter Jayson Werth’s single, who would later steal second, tying the game up at three all. Eric Bruntlett would then follow with a RBI double, knocking in Taguchi and giving the Phillies a 4-3 lead. The Phillies would add to their lead in the sixth, when, with a runner on first and two outs, Taguchi would hit a RBI triple, knocking in pinch hitter Ryan Howard, who has earlier singled to the left of the shift that most major league teams would put up against him, making it 5-3 Phillies. Then in the eighth, the Phillies would put the game away, when, with a runner on first and two outs, Marson would hit a monster two-run home run to left, his first career home run, scoring Greg Golson, who was earlier safe at first on a force play, which has wiped out Mike Cervenak, who has earlier reached base on a fielding error by Nationals’ shortstop Hernandez, giving the Phillies a 7-3 lead. Pinch hitter Matt Stairs would then follow with a solo home run to right, his thirteen home run of the year, to give the Phillies an 8-3 lead. That would be the ballgame as Clay Condrey would come in to pitch a scoreless ninth, although he would give up a walk and then a single before recording the final out of the Phillies’ 2008 regular season by getting Emilio Bonifacio to ground out, 3-1.
Kyle Kendrick, the surprise starter, would get a no-decision as he pitches four innings, giving up three earned runs on four hits. Kendrick, who is not on the Phils’ post-season roster, will now be sent down to the Florida Instructional League to rebuild his confidence in his pitches as well as being taught two more pitches to help compliment his slider, before he comes back to join the team for spring training 2009. Les Walrond would get the win as he pitches two scoreless innings, giving up two hits as he struck out four. His record is now 1-1 with a 6.10 ERA. J.A. Happ would pitch one and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief, giving up two hits as he struck out three. Rudy Seanez would pitch a third of an inning, getting out the only batter he would face. Clay Condrey would pitch a scoreless ninth, giving up a hit and a walk. Odalis Perez would get the lost, as he is only able to pitch three and two-thirds inning, leaving the game early because of a possible injury and with the Nats not taking any chances with his career, giving up four runs, only three of which were earned, on eight hits while striking out five. His record is now 7-12 with an ERA of 4.34. Shairon Martis would pitch two innings and a third, giving up an earned run on two hits while striking out three. Marco Estrada would pitch two innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on three hits.
The Phillies (92-70) would end the year with a sweep of the Nationals, winning the third game of the series with rookies and bench players, although two of the regulars, Jayson Werth and Ryan Howard would both come up to bat as pinch hitters, both getting singles and both scoring. Among the bench players, So Taguchi would lead the way by going 3 for 5, getting a triple, knocking in three runs while scoring one. Eric Bruntlett and Tadahito Iguchi would be next as they each went two for five, with Bruntlett knocking in a run and scoring one. Geoff Jenkins would be the other bench player who would get a hit. The only one among the rookies with a good day would be Lou Marson, who would go 2 for 4, getting his first major league career hit, a single, score his first run, knock in his first RBI and hit his first home run of his career, all in the same game. He also threw out his first base stealer of his career, as he caught the Nationals’ Emilio Bonifacio when he overslid second base on a steal attempt, tagged out by Iguchi when he tried to put his foot back on the bag. Also, all three pinch hitters that the Phillies would send up to the plate would hit safely as Matt Stairs would add a solo home run to Werth and Ryan’s singles. The victory gives the Phillies the second best record in the National League, beind the Central Division Champions Chicago Cubs, and the fifth in the majors, behind the American League Western Division Chmpions Los Angeles Angles, the American League Eastern Division Champions Tampa Bay Rays and the American League Wild Card Winner and Current World Champions Boston Red Sox.
The Phillies ended the season in first place in the National League Eastern Division, with a record of 92-70 for a winning percentage of .568, ending twelve wins over .500. They ended up being three games ahead of the Mets, who ended up with a record of 89-73 .559, seven and a half games ahead of the Marlins, who ended up with a record of 84-77 .522, twenty games ahead of the Braves, who ended up with a record of 72-90 .444 and thirty-two and a half games ahead of the Nationals, who ended up with a record of 59-102 .366.
The Phillies will now have today and tomorrow to rest up before they get ready to face the Wild Card Winner Milwaukee Brewers for a five games National League Divisional Series, which will start in Philadelphia on Wednesday.
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’ bullpen would give up four runs in the bottom of the eighth which would help to do the Phillies in, 9-7, as the team now fall three games behind the first place Mets before their important weekend series with them. The Phillies would take the lead in the first, as, with a man on and two outs, Ryan Howard would hit a two-run home run, his thirty-eighth home run of the year, scoring Chase Utley, who has earlier been hit by the pitch, to give the Phils a quick 2-0 lead. The Nats would come back in their half of the first, as, with a man on and one man out, Ryan Zimmerman would hit a RBI double, knocking in Cristian Guzman, who has singled earlier, to cut the Phillies lead to 2-1. The Nats would then tie the score at two all, as, with two men on and two out, Kory Castro would hit a RBI single, scoring Zimmerman and sending Elijah Dukes, who has earlier walked, to third. Phillies’ starter Joe Blanton would finally end the inning by getting Wil Nieves to ground out, second to first. The Phillies would retake the lead in the third, as Utley would hit a RBI triple, scoring Jimmy Rollins, who has earlier singled, to give the Phils a 3-2 lead. The Nationals would then tie the score in the fifth, as, with the bases loaded via a walk (Emilio Bonifacio), a single (Guzman) and a second walk (Zimmerman), and with Ryan Madson now on the mound in place of Blanton, the next batter, Lastings Milledge, would hit a ground ball to Howard. Instead of going home to force out Bonifacio, Howard would instead throw to second, which would force out Zimmerman for the inning’s first out, as Bonifacio would score the tying run, while Guzman would move over to thiird as Bonifacio would be safe at first, leaving runners on the corners for the Nationals. Dukes would then come up and hit a grounder to third baseman Pedro Feliz. Instead of throwing home to cut down Zimmerman, Feliz would instead throw over to second to try and start a double play. Instead, Feliz would only force out Bonifacio for the inning’s second out as Bonifacio would take out Utley with a good slide, allowing Zimmerman to score, giving the Nats a 4-3 lead, while Dukes would be safe at first. Madson would finally end the inning by striking out Castro. The Phillies would retake the lead in the sixth as Howard would hit his second two-run home run of the night, his thirty-ninth home run of the year, knocking in Jayson Werth, who has earlier singled, to make it 5-4 Phillies. The Nationals would then tie it five all in the seventh, as, with two outs, Zimmerman would hit a solo home run, his eleventh home run of the year. Then would come the nightmarish eighth inning. With Chad Durbin still pitching for the Phils, Castro would start off the inning with a single. After Castro is replaced by pinch runner Pete Orr, Nieves would mess up a sacrifice bunt attempt by poping up to Howard for the inning’s first out. Then everything would unravel for the Phils. Durbin would unfurl a wild pitch that would send Orr over to second base. Roger Bernadina would then get a single, sending Orr to third, putting runners on the corners. Ronnie Beliard would follow with a RBI single, knocking in Orr, to give the Nationals a 6-5 lead, while sending Bernadina to second. Durbin would then be replaced by J.C. Romero. Bernadina would proceed to steal third before Romero would walk Bonifacio to load the bases. Guzman would then hit a three-run double, scoring Bernadina, Beliard and Bonifacio, to give the Nationals a 9-5 lead. Clay Condrey would then come in to replace Romero, soon ending the inning without any more damage. The Phillies would then strike back in the ninth, as with one man on and no one out, Matt Stairs would hit a RBI double to score Shane Victorino, who has only earlier singled, to make it 9-6 Nationals. Rollins would then move Stairs over to third as he grounds out, second to first, for the inning’s first out. Utley would then hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Stairs, to make it 9-7 Nats. And that would be the final score as Werth would end the game by striking out swinging.
Joe Blanton would receive a no-decision as he pitches only four innings plus three batters, giving up four earned runs on six hits. Ryan Madson would pitch two scoreless innings, giving up no hits. Scott Eyre would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs and no hits. Chad Durbin would receive his sixth blown save of the year, as well as the lost as he goes two-thirds of an inning, giving up four earned runs on five hits. His record is now 5-4 with a 2.69 ERA. J.C. Romero would face only two batters, getting out neither of them as he gives up a hit and walks one. Clay Condrey would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs on one hit. Odalis Perez would also get a no-decision as he pitches five innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits. Marco Estrada would have his first blown save of the year as he faces three batters, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Jesus Colome would pitch a scoreless, hitless inning. Mike Hinckley would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up one hit. Steven Shell would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no hits or runs. Saul Rivera would get the win as he pitch a scoreless inning, giving up jut one hit. His record is now 5-5 with a 3.52 ERA. Joel Hanrahan would pitch an inning, giving up two runs on two hits.
The lost put the Phillies in a bind as they now head to New York, needing to either sweep or win the series if they don’t want to fall any further behind the Mets. It would seems that Charlie Manuel’s strategic thinking in this game would backfire on him in the seventh as he would take out Scott Eyre, after he has gotten out the two batters that he would face, to have Chad Durbin handle the right handers in the Nationals’ line-up. The move would blow up in his face instead as Durbin would give up a solo home run to Ryan Zimmerman to tie the score The less said about the eighth inning nightmare that he started the better, as the Phillies would lose another recent game in that inning. Something needs to be done about this, and quickly, before that inning becomes a real major problem for the Phillies’ bullpen’s egos during the last twenty-two games of the season.
The lost puts the Phillies’ three games behind the Mets as the Mets would sweep the Brew Crew in Milwaukee, while they are now five games ahead of the now fading Marlins as they lost to the Braves. The Phillies, who have tomorrow off, now heads into New York with a series that will either see them get closer to the Mets or see them fall further behind them.
A solo home run by Jayson Werth helps to cap a come from behind win as the Phillies defeated the last place Nats in the first game of a three games set. The Nationals would strike first in the first inning as Willie Harris would hit a solo home run off of Phils’ starter Joe Blanton for his tenth home run of the year to give the Nats a quick 1-0 lead. The Phillies would come back to tie it in the second as Greg Dobbs would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Ryan Howard, who has earlier singled and would then move to third on Shane Victorino’s double. The Nationals would retake the lead in the fourth as Jesus Flores would hit a RBI single, knocking in Lastings Milledge, who has earlier singled and has gone to third on Ronnie Belliard’s single, giving the Nats a 2-1 lead. The Nats would then increase their lead in the fifth as, with one out and a runner on first, Ryan Zimmerman would hit a RBI triple, scoring Harris, who has earlier singled, to make it 3-1 Nationals. Zimmerman would then score on a two out single by Belliard, to make it 4-1 Nats. The Phillies would then do something that they haven’t done successfully for a while, strike back. In their half of the fifth, Victorino would start the inning off with a triple. He would then score to make it a 4-2 Nats’ lead as Dobbs’ fly ball to left is booted by the left fielder Harris for an error. Dobbs would then steal second, before going to third on Chris Coste’s line drive single to left that was deflected by Nats’ shortstop Belliard, putting runners on the corners. Geoff Jenkins, who has come up to pinch hit for Blanton, would make the score 4-3 Nationals as he hit a sacrifice fly. But the inning would then end on a Jimmy Rollins’ double play ball, 4-6-3. The Phillies’ bullpen, in this case Chad Durbin, would then come in to pitch two innings of shut out ball. The Phillies’ bat would then tie the game at four all in the seventh, as, with runners on first and third, and one out, Coste would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Victorino, who was earlier safe on a force out, and then would go to third on a Dobbs’ single, although he has gotten to third base earlier in the inning when a pick off attempt by Nats’ catcher Flores would go past first baseman Kory Casto into foul territory, but it was called back because home plate umpire Joe West said that Flores’ throwing hand has hit his mask when he was getting ready to throw the ball towards first. After Ryan Madson pitched a quick 1-2-3 eighth, with one out in the Phils’ half of the inning, Jayson Werth would give the Phillies the lead as he would hit his seventeenth home run of the year, a career high, giving the Phils a 5-4 lead. That would turn out to be the game, as Brad Lidge would come up in the ninth, and would record his thirty-first save of the year as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two.
Joe Blanton would get a no-decision as he would pitch five so-so innings, giving up four earned runs on eight hits. Chad Durbin would pitch two scoreless innings, giving up three hits. Ryan Madson would get the win as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, strriking out two batters. His record is now 3-1 with a 3.11 ERA. Brad Lidge would also pitch a 1-2-3 inning, strking out two men as well, as he records his thirty-first save in thirty-one tries. Jason Bergmann would also get a no-decision as he went six and a third innings, giving up four runs, three of which were earned, on six hits. Steven Shell would get the lost and his first blown save, as he would go an inning, giving up one earned run on one hit, Jayson Werth’s home run. Charlie Manning and Saul Rivera would each pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits.
Other than Jayson Werth’s home run, the offense would not get a key hit to produce runs. Instead, their other four runs would come in via three sac flies and a Nats’ error. If the offense want to do better than that, it will need to get more than just six to seven hits a night, as it got outhit 11 to 7 by the worst team in the majors. That will not do if they want to get back into first place.
The Phillies (67-58) will continue their three games series with the Nationals (44-82) with a game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Brett Myers (5-10, 5.02), who is coming off a hard lost to the Dodgers on August 14 as he pitched his fourth straight quality start, going seven innings as he gave up only three earned runs on five hits, in the Phils’ 3-1 lost. In his last start against the Nats, on July 29, he would get the win as he went seven innings, giving up an unearned run on four hits, in the Phillies’ 2-1 win. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to dominate the Nationals once again. The Nats will counter by sending Collin Balester (2-5, 5.06), who is coming off a lost against the Mets on August 14, where he would pitch five innings, giving up five earned runs on four hits, in the Nationals’ 9-3 lost. His previous start against the Phillies was a defeat on July 29, as he gave up two earned runs on six hits in six innings of work, in the Nationals’ 2-1 lost. He will also be looking to improve his record while trying to stop the Nationals’ present losing streak at eleven games.
The Phillies continue to trail the Mets by a game and a half as the Mets came from behind to defeat the Braves. They are ahead of the Marlins by two and a half games as the Marlins cool off the Giants. The Phillies will try to stay close to the Mets, praying that they won’t lose any more ground before their meeting at the end of the home stand.
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.