Tagged: Magic Number

Cole Hamels appear to have returned to form as he help pitch the Phils to a sweep of the Nationals, 4-2.

Cole Hamels pitched eight strong innings, giving up only one run on five hits as he help led the Phils to a three-game sweep of the Nationals, 4-2. The Phils now have a seven and a half games lead over the now second place Braves, while their magic number have now dropped to 10.

The game started as a pitchers’ duel between Phils’ starter Cole Hamels, who was working on a perfect game through the first five innings, striking out four, and Nationals’ starters Ross Detwiler, who was able to keep the Phils’ off the board for four innings, while giving up three hits and hitting a batter, while striking out four. The Phils then took the lead in the bottom of the fifth as, with a runner on second, and with two outs, Jimmy Rollins hits an RBI double, knocking in Pedro Feliz, who had earlier walked, and then moved up to second on a Carlos Ruiz ground out, 1-3, to give the Phils a 1-0 lead. The Phils then added to their lead in the sixth as, with the bases loaded, via walks to Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth, and a single to Ben Francisco, moving both Howard and Werth up a base, and with two man out, Ruiz received an RBI walk, forcing in Howard, and making it a 2-0 Phils’ lead, while moving Werth on to third and Francisco to second. The next batter, Hamels, then helped his own cause by hitting an RBI single, knocking in Werth, making it 3-0 Phils, while sending Francisco to third and Ruiz to second. The Nats’ would end the shut out in the seventh, an inning after Mike Morse had broken up Hamels’ no-hit bid with a lead-off single, as, with two men on, and with one man out, Elijah Dukes hits an RBI single, knocking in Ryan Zimmerman, who had earlier singled and had gone to second on Josh Willingham’s single, making it a 3-1 Phils’ lead, while sending Willingham, who had earlier singled, to second base. The Phils would get the run back in their half of the seventh as, with a runner on third, and with two men out, as Werth batted, Chase Utley, who had earlier walked, had moved up to second on a wild pitch, and then moved over to third on a Howard ground out, 4-3, would score on the second wild pitch of the inning, making it 4-1 Phils. The Nats would make it 4-2 Phils in the ninth as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Ian Desmond hits an RBI ground out, 5-3, knocking in Dukes, who had earlier tripled. But, that would be it as Brad Lidge would record his thirtieth save of the year by getting pinch hitter Willie Harris to fly out to center for the game’s final out.

Cole Hamels got the win as he pitched eight strong innings, giving up only one run on five hits and a walk, while striking out ten. His record is now 10-9 with a 4.07 ERA. Brad Lidge recorded his thirtieth save of the season as he pitched an inning, giving up a run on one hit. Ross Detwiler took the lost, as he went five innings, giving up a run on four hits and a walk, while he struck out six. Tyler Clippard pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up two runs on a hit and three walks. Saul Rivera pitched a third of an inning, giving up a hit. Ron Villone pitched a third of an inning, giving up a run on a walk and a wild pitch, while he struck out a batter. Logan Kensing pitched two-thirds of an inning, throwing a wild pitch. Marco Estrado pitched a 1-2-3 inning.

The Phillies had just six hits in the game, but getting them when they counted. Jimmy Rollins lead the way with two hits, including an RBI double, raising his average back up to .247. Chase Utley, Jayson Werth, Ben Francisco and Cole Hamels had the other four Phils’ hits, all singles, with Hamels’ single knocking in a run. Carlos Ruiz scored a Phil run with a bases loaded walk, while the other run (Utley) scored on a wild pitch. The Phils are now riding a five game winning streak, with starting pitching giving up very few, if any runs, while the Phils’ offense has been able to be a bit more productive at the plate with runners in scoring position.

The Phillies (85-60, 1st) begin a ten-games road trip with a three-games series with the Braves (78-68, 2nd), starting tonight. The game will be played at Turner Field and will start at 7:30 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be J.A. Happ (10-4, 2.77), who will be making his first start since September 2, when he lost to the Giants, as he pitched six innings, giving up four runs on eight hits and a walk, while striking out seven, in the Phils’ 4-0 lost. He will be trying to make his start since he had strained his intercostal muscle while taking batting practice in Houston. The Braves will send to the mound Tim Hudson (1-0, 3.63), who is coming off a no-decision against the Cardinals on September 12, when he went five innings, giving up four runs on ten hits and a walk, as he struck out one, in the Braves’ 7-6 win. He will be trying to keep the Braves’ slim pennant hopes alive. The Phils are entering their final road trip of the season, with a chance to all but kill the pennant chances of both the Braves this weekend and the Marlins early next week.

A Jayson Werth grand slam and a stellar pitching performance by Joe Blanton leads the Phils to a 6-1 victory over the Nats.

A stellar pitching performance for six innings by Joe Blanton, helped by a late innings grand slam by Jayson Werth, led the Phils to a 6-1 win over the last place Nationals, 6-1. The win reduced the Phils’ magic number over both the Marlins and the Braves to 11.

The Phils took a quick 1-0 lead in the first as, with runner on the corners, and with Raul Ibanez at the plate, with two men out, Chase Utley, who had earlier singled and then went to third on Ryan Howard’s single, stole home plate at the back end of a double steal as Howard first stole second. The game then became a pitchers’ duel between Phils’ starter Joe Blanton, who in six innings would give up only five hits and four walks, but no runs, and Nationals’ starter Livan Hernandez, who in his first five innings would give up a run on five hits. The Phils would then increase their lead in the sixth as, with two men on, and with one out, Pedro Feliz would hit a grounder to Nats’ shortstop Cristian Guzman. Guzman threw the ball to second baseman Ian Desmond to force out Jayson Werth, who had earlier walked, for the inning’s second out. But, Desmond then threw the ball away at first when he tried to double up Feliz. The throwing error would allow Ibanez, who had earlier singled, and had moved up to second base on Werth’s walk, to head for home, after having reached third at the start of the play, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead, as Feliz was safe on the error. The Phils then broke the game wide open in the seventh as, with the bases loaded, via Utley being hit by the pitch, Howard being intentionally walked after Utley had stolen second base, his second steal of the night, and then a walk to Ibanez, which would move both Utley and Howard up a base, with two men out, Werth hits a grand-slam home run, his thirty-fourth home run of the season, scoring Utley, Howard and Ibanez. In the ninth, the Nats would finally score a run as, with a runner on second, and with two men out. Willie Harris hits an RBI single, knocking in Justin Maxwell, who had earlier singled, and then moved up to second on defensive indifference, making it a 6-1 Phils’ lead, ending the Phils’ pitching staff’s 26 straight innings scoreless streak. That would be the final score as Tyler Walker would get the next batter, Guzman, to pop out to Utley to end the game.

Joe Blanton gets the win as he pitched six scoreless innings, giving up just five hits and four walks, while striking out seven. His record is now 10-7 with a 3.97 ERA. Chan Ho Park pitched a scoreless inning as he recorded his thirteenth hold, giving up a hit. Ryan Madson pitched a scoreless inning as well, as he walked a batter, while striking out one. Tyler Walker pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits. Livan Hernandez took the lost as he pitched six innings, giving up two runs on seven hits and two walks, while striking out four. His record is now 8-11 with a 5.22 ERA. Tyler Clippard pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on no hits and a hit batter. Sean Burnett pitched to two batters, getting neither of them out as he walked both of them, giving up two runs. Jason Bergmann pitched a third of an inning, giving up a run on one hit. Zack Segovia pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out a batter.

The Phils had eight hits in the game, with Jayson Werth leading the way with two hits, including his grand-slam home run, knocking in four of the Phils’ run, while he raised his batting average to .272. Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez, Carlos Ruiz and Joe Blanton had the Phils other six hits, all singles. During the game, the Phils lost Chan Ho Park, as he injured his right hamstring while throwing a pitch to the mound. It is not, as of yet, known how long he may be out.

The Phils (84-60, 1st) will continue their home stand tonight with a night game against the Nats (50-95, 5th). The game will be played tonight at 7:05 pm Eastern and will be played at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies starter will be Cole Hamel (9-9, 4.21), who is coming off a victory against the Mets on September 11, as he pitched a sharp six and two-thirds innings, giving up only a run on seven hits and a walk, while he struck out six, in the Phils’ 4-2 win. He will be shooting for his tenth win, while trying to continue his recent string of good starts to get back to his playoff form. The Nats will counter with Ross Detwiler (0-5, 6.17), who last pitched in relief on September 12 against the Marlins, pitching two shut out innings, giving up only two walks, in the Nats’ 11-3 win. He will be trying to help the Nats avoid the sweep. The Phils hope to make it five wins in a row, with a series sweep, while trying to both increase their lead in the East and reduce their magic number even further.

Cliff Lee pitches a complete game shutout of the Nats as the Phils defeat Washington, 5-0.

Cliff Lee threw his first complete game shutout as a Phil (his second one this season) as the Phils defeat the Nationals, 5-0. The Phils’ magic number is now down to twelve over both the Marlins and the Braves as their lead over the fish remains at seven games.

The Phils jumped to a quick 1-0 lead in the first inning as, with a man on third, and with one man out, Chase Utley hits an RBI single, scoring Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier doubled, and had gone over to third on Shane Victorino’s sacrifice bunt, 2-3. The Phils would then bust the game wide open in the second as, with the bases loaded, via a double by Raul Ibanez, a single by Jayson Werth, which sent Ibanez over to third, and a Pedro Feliz walk, which moved Werth up to second base, and with no outs, Carlos Ruiz hits a three-run double, knocking in Ibanez, Werth and Feliz, giving the Phils a 4-0 lead. And two batters later, after Phils’ starter Cliff Lee flied out to center for the Phils’ first out, Rollins hits an RBI single, scoring Ruiz, making it 5-0 Phils. After Rollins’ hit, the Phils’ offense would get only four more hits on the night. But, it would not matter as Cliff Lee easily handled the Nationals, giving up only six hits and three walks as he pitched a complete game shut out, his first since being traded to the Phils, his second of the season, and the fourth complete game shut out of his career.

Cliff Lee recorded the victory as he pitched a complete game, giving up only six runs and four walks, while striking out nine Nats. His record is now 14-11 (7-2) with an ERA of 3.00 (2.67). Garrett Mock took the lost as he pitched six innings, giving up five runs on seven hits and two walks, while he struck out two. His record is now 3-8 with a 5.89 ERA. Saul Rivera, Ron Villone and Logan Kensing combined for two scoreless innings, giving up only three hits (Rivera (1), Kensing (2)) and a walk (Villone), while they struck out only one batter among them (Kensing).

The Phils had ten hits in the game, with Jayson Werth leading the way with three hits, all singles, raising his batting average up to .270. Jimmy Rollins and Carlos Ruiz followed with two hits apiece, with one of Rollins’ hits being a double, as he knocked in a run, while both of Ruiz’s hits were doubles, as he knocked in three of the Phils’ runs with the first one. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley and Raul Ibanez had the other three hits, with Ibanez’s hit being a double. Utley knocked in the Phils’ other run, as the Phils’ offense last night was successfully able to knock in runners in scoring position when given the opportunity.

The Phils (83-60, 1st) continue their home stand with the Nats (50-94) with a night game. The game will start at 7:05 pm and will be played at Citizens Bank Park. The Phils will send to the mound Joe Blanton (9-7, 4.11), who is coming off his worst start of the season as he lost to the Nats on September 10, where he went only four and two-thirds innings, giving up eight runs on seven hits and four walks, while striking out four, in the Phils’ 8-7 lost. He will be trying to get back on track as he once again attempt to win his tenth game of the season. The Nats will counter with Livan Hernandez (8-10, 5.30), who is coming off a win against the Phils on September 10, as he pitched seven and a third innings, giving up just two runs on six hits and a walk, while striking out only two, in the Nats’ 8-7 win. He will be trying for his second straight win against the Phils in as many starts. The Phils will be trying to continue their present winning streak while trying to lower their magic number against both the Marlins and the Braves even more.

Phils hang on last night to defeat the Nationals, 6-5. Lead in the East stays at six games.

The Phils continue the adventure that is the 2009 season, as Ryan Madson complete his second straight save opportunity by getting Adam Dunn to hit into a 4-6 line out double play with a runner on second and one man out, as the Phils finally defeat the pesty Nats, 6-5. Their lead over the Marlins remain at six games while their magic number drop down to nineteen.

The Nats took a quick 1-0 lead in the first as, with a runner on second, and with one man out, Adam Dunn hits an RBI single, knocking in Cristian Guzman, who had earlier doubled. The Phils would strike back in the second, as, with a runner on second, and with nobody out, Jayson Werth hits an RBI single, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had earlier doubled, tying the score at one-all. The Phils would then take the lead as, with the bases loaded, via a Pedro Feliz single, moving Werth up to second base, and then a walk to Paul Bako, moving Werth to third and Feliz to second, and still with no one out, Cliff Lee helped his own cause by hitting an RBI single, easily scoring Werth, and giving the Phils a 2-1 lead, while sending Feliz up to third, and Bako to second. The Phils would then make it 3-1, as with the bases still loaded, and with still no outs, Jimmy Rollins hits into an RBI ground out, 4-3, making the inning’s first out as he scores Feliz, while moving Bako to third, and sending Lee to second. The Phils made it a 4-1 lead in the fifth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Ibanez hits an RBI double, knocking in Ryan Howard, who had just walked. The Nats would get that run back in their half of the fifth as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Guzman hits an RBI ground out on a slow roller to Lee, 1-3, scoring Alberto Gonzalez from third, who had earlier doubled, and had gone to third on Justin Maxwell’s single, making it a 4-2 Phils’ lead, while moving Maxwell up to second base. Dunn would make the score 4-3 as he hits an RBI single, scoring Maxwell, who just beat Werth’s throw to the plate, while Dunn would move up to third on the throw. The Nats tied the game up at four-all in the seventh as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Guzman hits into a force out, 6-4, on a ball misplayed by Rollins, allowing Gonzalez, who had earlier doubled, and had gone to third on pinch hitter Jorge Padilla’s single, wiping out Padilla at second, to score, as Guzman beat out the throw to first. The Phils regained the lead in the eighth as Jayson Werth hits a lead-off home run, his thirty-third home run of the season, giving the Phils a 5-4 lead. The next batter, Feliz, followed with a home run of his own, his tenth home run of the year, making it a 6-4 Phils’ lead. The Nats got a run back in their half of the eighth as, with the bases loaded, with Ryan Zimmerman reaching base on a catch error by Howard, a double by Josh Willingham, sending Zimmerman to third base, and a walk to Elijah Dukes, and with one man out, pinch hitter Pete Orr hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Zimmerman from third, making it a 6-5 Phils’ lead. That would end up being the final score, as Ryan Madson converted his sixth save of the season, by getting Dunn to hit into a line out double play, 4-6, as Justin Maxwell, is doubled off second base.

Cliff Lee got the win as he went seven innings plus two batters, giving up five runs, four of which were earned, on ten hits, as he struck out four. His record is now 13-11 (6-2) with an ERA of 3.13. Chan Ho Park converted his tenth hold as he pitched an inning, giving up just a walk. Ryan Madson collected his sixth save, as he also pitched an inning, giving up a hit, as he struck out a batter. Garrett Mock received a no-decision as he pitched five innings, giving up four runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out four. Jason Bergmann pitched one and a third scoreless innings, giving up just a hit and a walk. Sean Burnett pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a walk, while striking out a batter. Tyler Clippard took the lost, as he gave up two runs on two hits, while striking out a batter. His record is now 2-2 with a 3.16 ERA. Mike MacDougal pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits, as he struck out two batters.

The Phillies had eleven hits in the game, with Shane Victorino, Raul Ibanez, Jayson Werth and Pedro Feliz each leading the team with two hits, with one of Victorino’s hits and one of Ibanez’s hits being for doubles, while Werth and Feliz both hit solo home runs, as Werth knocked in two runs, and Feliz and Ibanez each knocking in a run. Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard and Cliff Lee had the other three Phils’ hits, with Lee’s hit knocking in a run, while Rollins knocked in the other Phils’ run with a ground out.

The Phils (79-58, 1st) will play their final game of the road trip with the Nationals (47-92, 5th) tonight with a night game. The game will be played at Nationals Park and it will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils will send to the mound Joe Blanton (9-6, 3.80),  who is coming off a no-decision against the Astros on September 5, where he pitched six strong innings, giving up just three runs on six hits and a walk, while he struck out five, in the Phils’ 4-3 lost. He will be trying once again for his tenth win of the season. The Nats will counter with Livan Hernandez (7-10, 5.44), who is coming off a lost against the Marlins on September 5, as he went five innings, giving up six runs on eight hits and four walks, while striking out six, in the Nats’ 5-4 lost. He will be trying to keep the Nats from being once again swept by the Phils. The Phils will be going for a sweep before coming home for seven games with the Mets and the Nats, as they hope to keep the Marlins at bay in the pennant race.

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 4: Myers will try to bounce back to lead the team to another series win.

The Phillies (89-69) will play the last game of their three games series with the Braves (70-88) tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (10-12, 4.46), who is coming off his worst outing since his return from the minors, as he lost to the Marlins on September 19, as he went four innings plus five batters, giving up ten earned runs on nine hits, in the Phillies’ 14-8 lost. Myers should be able to bounce back from that start, like his did in his previous start against the Brewers on September 14, when he pitched a complete game shut out, after his lost to the Marlins on September 10. The lost makes Myers 7-3 since his return. He will be trying for his eleventh win overall while getting the Phillies a bit closer to the playoff with four games left to play in the season. The Braves will oppose him with Jo-Jo Reyes (3-11, 5.74), who is coming off a recent no-decision against the Mets on September 19, where he only lasted three and a third innings, giving up five earned runs on seven hits, in the Braves’ 9-5 lost. Against the Phillies this year, he has appeared in three games, two of them starts, where his record is 0-2 with a 7.56 ERA, hoping that he won’t get bombed again by the Phillies’ bats as he starts against them.

The Phillies’ offense should be trying to rebound from last night’s hard lost and Jo-Jo Reyes and his 7.56 ERA against them should be what the doctor ordered. Of course, they need to concentrate on the HRP: Hits, Runs and Pile it on. Get base hits, score runs early and score runs often. A steal or two from either Jimmy Rollins or Shane Victorino once they get on base wouldn’t hurt the cause. Brett Myers, for his part, needs to just forgot about last Friday’s game and take his frustrations out on the Braves’ bat, shutting them down so that they won’t be able to get any run opportunities like they got in last night’s game. He will have to be ready to put on his A-game to pick up Cole Hamels. At the same time, the bullpen should be ready to keep down the Braves once they are given the ball in relief.

The Phillies lead the Mets by a game and a half in the East as the Mets prepare to face the Cubs once again. The magic number for the Divisional crown is still at four. In the Wild Card chase, the Mets’ lead over the Brewers is still a game as they get ready to face the Pirates. The Phillies will be trying to recover from last night’s lost, hoping for another good outing from Myers while hoping to once again sting Reyes and send the Braves packing with another lost.

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Game 5: Phillies lose tough one to the Braves as their lead in the East shrinks to a game and a half.

A throwing error by Cole Hamels, the lack of a clutch hit with the bases loaded and a base running error in the sixth would all lead to a hard lose as the Phillies lose a close one to the Braves, 3-2. The Mets’ win against the Cubs cuts the Phils lead in the East down to a game and a half and leaves the magic number for winning the East at four while a Brewers’ win leave the playoff magic number at one.

The Braves took the lead in the first as, with a runner on second and one out, Kelly Johnson would hit a RBI single, scoring Martin Prado, who has earlier singled, giving the Braves a quick 1-0 lead. The Phillies would tie up the game in the second as, with a runner on third and two outs, Pedro Feliz would hit a RBI single, scoring Ryan Howard, who has earlier singled, went to second on Pat Burrell’s walk and would go to third on Shane Victorino’s 4-6-3 double play ball, which wiped out Burrell at second. The Braves would retake the lead in the third as, with runners on first and second and two out, Coel Hamels would have Johnson, who has gotten on base earlier with a single and then would move to second on Omar Infante’s single, picked off as Johnson was trying to steal third. But, Hamels’ throw to Feliz at third would go behind the third baseman and into left field, allowing Johnson to score and make it 2-1 Braves. The Phillies would threaten to even the score in their half of the third as they loaded up the bases with a double (Chase Utley), a throwing error by Johnson (Jayson Werth) and a walk (Howard), with two men out. But Braves’ starter Mike Hampton would end the threat by getting Burrell to pop out to the third baseman. The Braves would increase their lead in the sixth, as, with two outs, Casey Kotchman would hit a solo home run, his fourteenth home run of the year, making it 3-1 Braves. The Phillies would get a run base in their half of the sixth, as, with a runner on third and no one out, Pat Burrell would hit a RBI double, scoring Howard, who has earlier tripled, to make it a 3-2 Braves’ lead. Then Burrell would make a crucial base running blunder as, when Shane Victorino hit a hard ground to Braves’ shortstop Brent Lillibridge, instead of going back to second, as he should’ve done, he would be caught off second and then be run down before finally being tagged out by Johnson, with the play going 6-5-4, with Victorino being safe at first on the fielder’s choice. Later, with Feliz batting, Victorino would try to steal second. He would be thrown out by Braves’ catcher Brian McCann for the inning’s second out as Johnson supplies the tag. Feliz would then end the inning by grounding out, 6-3. The Burrell base running blunder would seems to take the wind out of the Phillies’ sails for the rest of the night as they would be unable to mount another threat as the game ended up being a win for the Braves.

Cole Hamels would take the lost as he pitched seven innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on eight hits, as he struck out seven. His record is now 14-10 with an ERA of 3.09. Scott Eyre, Chad Durbin and J.C. Romero would combine for two scoreless innings, giving up no hits between them, while striking out one (Romero). Mike Hampton would get the win as he pitches six innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits. His record is now even at 3-3 with a 4.88 ERA. Will Ohman and Jeff Bennett would each pitch a scoreless inning, with both man giving up no hits while Bennett would walk a batter. Mike Gonzalez would record his fourteenth save of the year as he pitches a scoreless ninth, giving up no hits as he walked a batter and struck out one.

The Phillies would get done in by the kind of mistakes that they have been avoiding lately, namely a throwing error by Cole Hamels when he had Kelly Johnson dead to rights when Johnson was trying to steal third, being unable to get the clutch hit when they needed it after they had loaded up the bases and Pat Burrell’s base running blunder with no one out. With Hamels’ errant throw, even with his throwing behind Pedro Feliz, if the throw has gone into Feliz’s glove, and Johnson has been safe at third, the Braves would have been turned back as Hamels then struck out Casey Kotchman to end the inning, keeping the game tied at 1-1. This might have been the turning point of the game, as the Phillies, in the later half of the inning, would mount a bases loaded threat that would be turned back because of a pop up into foul territory by Pat Burrell that was caught by Braves’ third baseman Martin Prado. But what really killed the Phillies was Burrell’s later base running blunder in the sixth. With the play in front of him, he should’ve went back to second when Braves’ shortstop Brent Lillibridge caught Shane Victorino’s hard ground ball. Instead, he allowed himself to get trapped between second and third, and then compounded things by not staying in the base paths long enough to allow Victornio to get to second base. An added insult would be Braves’ catcher Brian McCann throwing out Victorino when Victorino tried to steal second. Hopefully the Phillies will be able to bounce back from the lost and win tonight’s game with the Braves.

The Phillies (89-69) will play the final game of their three games home stand with the Braves (70-88) tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will begin at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (10-12, 4.46), who is coming off his worst outing since his return from the minors, as he lost to the Marlins on September 20, where he only went four innings plus five batters, giving up ten earned runs on nine hits, in the Phillies’ 14-8 lost. Myers should be able to come back from that start, like his did in his previous start against the Brewers on September 14, where he pitched a complete game shut out, after his lost to the Marlins on September 10. The lost makes Myers 7-3 since his return. He will be trying for his eleventh win overall while getting the Phillies a bit closer to the playoff with four games left to play. The Braves will oppose him with Jo-Jo Reyes (3-11, 5.74), who is coming off a recent no-decision against the Mets on September 19, where he only lasted three and a third innings, giving up five earned runs on seven hits, in the Braves’ 9-5 lost. Against the Phillies this year, he has appeared in three games, two of them starts, where his record is 0-2 with a 7.56 ERA, hoping that he won’t get bombed again by the Phillies’ bats as he starts against them.

The lost would cut the Phillies’ lead over the Mets down to a game and a half as the Mets defeated the Cubs. The magic number for the Division crown is still at four. In the Wild Card chase, the Mets’ lead is still a game over the Brewers as they defeated the Pirates, while their lead over the Astros is now four and a half as they lost to the Reds. The Phillies will be trying to recover from last night’s lost, hoping for another good outing from Myers while hoping to once again sting Reyes and send the Braves packing with another lost.