Pat Burrell’s three-run home run will help keep the Phillies in first place in the East before the All-Star break as the Phillies defeat the Diamondbacks, 6-3. The D-backs would score the game’s first run in the top of the second as Cole Hamels would throw a fastball on a 1-2 pitch that Chad Tracy would hit out of the park for a solo home run, his fifth home run of the season, to give the D-backs a 1-0 lead. The D-backs would increase their lead in the fourth as Hamels would give up a two out RBI single to Robby Hammock, scoring Chris Young, who has gotten on base earlier with a bunt single, and has gone to second on a Chris Burke infield single, to give the D-backs a 2-0 lead. Normally, that would be the ballgame, as the D-backs’ starter, Brendon Webb was getting the Phillies’ batters out with a nasty changeup, which he was throwing in conjunction with his curveball. But, it wouldn’t be so today, as the Phillies would refuse to go down easily. In the fifth, the Phillies would cut the D-backs lead to 2-1, as with one out, Hamels would hit a RBI double, which would score Pedro Feliz, who has earlier singled, all the way from first base as the ball went into the gap in left center field. Hamels would then keep the score at 2-1 as he stopped two attempts by the D-backs to break the game open. In the sixth, after Mark Reynolds would get on base with the only walk that Hamels would give up and then goes to second on Tracy’s single, Hamels would end the threat by first striking out Young and Burke, and then getting Hammock to fly out to right. Then in the seventh, Webb would lead off the inning with a single, and then move to second on Stephen Drew’s single. But, the Phillies would get the first out as Conor Jackson pushes a hard bunt down the third base line that would be picked up by Feliz, who would then touch third base, getting Webb out, but is unable to double up Jackson, while Drew goes to second on the play. The next batter, Orlando Hudson, would then get a single deep to right, which would hit the wall in front of Geoff Jenkins. This would turn out to be good luck for the Phillies, as the D-backs’ third base coach, unable to tell whether Jenkins has caught the ball or not, would stop Drew at third base, which in turn would force Jackson to stop at second, as Chase Utley would relay Jenkins’ throw to catcher Chris Coste. As soon as he has caught it, Coste would see Hudson, who has thought that he was going to get a double on his hit, trapped near second base, since Johnson was still standing on the bag. After looking over at Drew, he threw the ball to Ryan Howard. Howard, while also keeping an eye on Drew, to make sure thst he wouldn’t score during the rundown, forced Hudson back towards second. When Hudson tried to run out of the basepath to keep from being tagged by Howard, he was automatically called out by the umpire, for the second out of the inning, with men on second and third. Hamels would then end the threat by striking out Reynolds for his eighth strike out of the game. In the Phillies’ half of the seventh, with two outs and a man on second, Jimmy Rollins would get a RBI double off of Webb, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who was pinch running for Coste, who has earlier singled, that would tie the game at two all. After Ryan Madson would put down the D-backs in the top of the eighth, the Phillies went to work on the D-backs’ reliever Chad Qualls. Utley would start the inning off with a single to center, then would go to second on Howard’s single to left. With two men on, Qualls would throw a 2-2 slider to Pat Burrell which Burrell would hit to left, into the flower garden, for a three-run homer, for his twenty-third home run of the season, to give the Phillies a 5-2 lead. Two batters later, with one out, Feliz would hit a solo home run, his twelfth home run of the year, to give the Phillies a 6-2 lead. In the ninth inning, with Brad Lidge pitching, Hudson would hit a RBI single, scoring Emilio Bonifacio, who has earlier singled, to make it 6-3 Phillies. But that would be it as Lidge would end the game by striking out Reynolda.
Cole Hamels would get a no-decision, pitching seven innings, as he gives up only two earned runs on eleven scattered hits, while striking out eight D-backs. Ryan Madson would get the win, as he pitched a shut out inning while giving up one hit. His record is now 2-0 with a 2.77 ERA. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, giving up an earned run on two hits. Brandon Webb would also get a no-decision as he goes seven innings, giving up two earned runs on seven hits while he struck out six. Chad Qualls would take the lost as he goes only a third of an inning, giving up four earned runs on four hits. His record is now 2-7 with a ERA of 3.89. Connor Robertson would go two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits.
With the win, the Phillies will stay in first place in the National League East, no matter what either the Marlins or the Mets will do tonight. The Phillies’ players will now spend the next four days, except for Chase Utley and Brad Lidge who will both be in Yankee Stadium on Tuesday night for the All-Star Game, trying to relax and get refresh, before they play their first series of the second half against the Marlins in Miami on July 18.
The Phillies (52-44), with the win, remain in first place as the 30 major league teams head into the All-Star break. They presently lead the Mets by a game as the Mets prepare to play the Rockies later tonight. The Phillies now lead the Marlins by a game and a half as they lost to the Dodgers. The Braves remain six and a half games behind the Phillies after their win against the Padres today.
Edit: The Phils’ lead over the Mets stay at half as the Mets’ defeated the Rockies with ease. (I need to start drinking more caffeine if I want to avoid making such factual errors late at night.)
The old Adam Eaton of late ’07 might have returned as the Phillies have lost to the Diamondbacks, 10-4. The D-backs would score first as Chad Tracy would hit a RBI single, knocking in Stephen Drew, who has earlier singled, giving the D-backs a 1-0 lead. Mark Reynolds then hit into a force out, third to second, scoring Conor Jackson, who has earlier singled, to make it 2-0 Arizona. The Phillies would tie it in the third as Shane Victorino hit his fourth home run of the year, a two-run shot off of D-backs’ starter, Randy Johnson, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier walked. But then the old Adam Eaton would reappear in the top of the fourth. After easily getting out the first two batters, Eaton would give up a single to Alex Romero. Robby Hammock would follow with a walk, moving Romero to second. Johnson would then come to the plate, and after getting the count to go to 3-2, after trailing 1-2, would hit a two-run double to left, scoring both Romero and Hammock, giving the Diamondbacks a 4-2 lead. Drew then walks. Jackson would then follow with his own double to left, scoring Johnson to make it 5-2 D-backs, while moving Drew to third. Eaton then intentionally walked Orlando Hudson to load the bases. He would also be the last batter he would face, as Charlie Manuel replaces him with R.J. Swindle. Swindle is greeted by a single from Tracy, scoring both Drew and Jackson, making it 7-2 D-backs, while sending Hudson to third. The next batter, Reynolds, who has started the inning, then hit a three-run home run off of Swindle, his nineteenth home run of the year, to give the D-backs a commanding 10-2 lead. After giving up a single to Chris Young, Swindle would finally end the inning by getting Romero to fly out. In the fifth, the Phillies would shorten the lead as Swindle gets his first career RBI by grounding out to the right side of the infield, second to first, scoring Eric Bruntlett, who has earlier doubled, and has gone to third on a Ruiz ground out, making it 10-3, D-backs. Victorino then follows with his fifth home run of the year, a solo shot, also off of Johnson, making it 10-4 D-backs. And that would be the game as both team would not be able to score any more runs, with the game ending in a D-backs’ victory as Micah Owings would get the Phillies to go down 1-2-3 in the ninth.
Adam Eaton took the lost, as it appears that the Eaton of late ’07 has returned. He would only go three and two-thirds innings, giving up eight earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 3-8 with an ERA of 5.71. R.J. Swindle pitches one and two-thirds innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits. Rudy Seanez would go two and two-thirds innings, giving up no runs on one hits. Clay Condrey would pitch a scoreless, hitless inning. Randy Johnson would get the win as he goes six innings, giving up four earned runs on five hits. His record is now 6-7 with a 5.23 ERA. Leo Rosales would pitch a scoreless, hitless inning while Micah Owings would pitch two shut out innings.
The Phillies’ offense was for the most part unable to handle Randy Johnson, as usual, while Adam Eaton got nailed in the fourth inning, after the Phillies were able to tie the score in the third inning. It seems that with the last two starts that the Adam Eaton who was pitching in the last few months of ’07 has returned, especially as Eaton allowed himself to not get out of the inning after giving up a hit to Alex Romero, instead of just going after the following batter. Giving up the double to Randy Johnson, after getting ahead made it worst as he appear to fool around with Johnson before he threw the pitch that Johnson drilled to left for a double, knocking in two runs. If the late ’07 Eaton has returned, the Phillies are going to be in a lot of trouble while he’s on the mound. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m starting to think that someone needs to nip this in the bud before that happens.
The Phillies (51-44) will play the final game of their three games set with the Diamondbacks (47-47, 1st National League West) tomorrow afternoon at Citizens Bank Park.The game will start at 1:35 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (9-6, 3.18), who is coming off a lost against the Cardinals on July 8, where he would go seven innings, giving up only two earned runs on only three hits, in the Phillies’ 2-0 lost. He will for the second time be trying to get his tenth win of the year, while also trying to end the first half for the Phillies on a winning note. He will be countered by Brandon Webb (13-4, 3.27), who is coming off a win against the Nationals on July 8, where he went six innings, giving up no runs on six hits, in the D-backs’ 2-0 victory. This will be his second start against the Phils, having defeated them in his previous start on May 8, having gone all nine innings, giving up three runs, two of which were earned, on six hits, in the D-backs’ 8-3 win. He will be trying to increase his major leaague lead in wins, while trying to end the Diamondbacks’ first half on a winning note.
The Phillies’ lead, thanks to the lost, has now shrunk to half a game as the Mets has won their eighth game in a row while the Phillies were losing to the D-backs. The Marlins are now trailing by a game, as they prepare for their game with the Dodgers, while the Phillies’ lead against the Braves is now seven games as they prepare to meet the Padres. The Phillies hope to end the first half of the season on a high note while keeping their lead in the National League East before they begin the second half with a three games series against the Marlins in Miami.