Wilson Valdez’s walk-off single in the eleventh give the Phils their eighth straight win, and their eleventh straight victory at home, as the Phils sweep the D-backs, 3-2.
After being scoreless for the first four and a half innings, the Phils took the lead in the fifth as, with one man on, and with one man out, Carlos Ruiz hits an RBI double, scoring Cody Ransom, who had earlier singled, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. The Phils made it 2-0 in the sixth as Raul Ibanez hits a lead-off home run, his ninth home run of the season. The D-backs would cut the Phils’ lead in half in the seventh as, with one man out, Miguel Montero hits a solo home run, his third home run of the year, making it a 2-1 Phils’ lead. The D-backs would tie the game up at two-all in the ninth as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Montero hits an RBI ground out, 6-3, knocking in Justin Upton, who had earlier doubled, and had gone to third on Adam LaRoche’s single, while sending LaRoche, who had just singled, up to second base, before being replaced by pinch runner Rusty Ryal. The D-backs then tried to take the lead as they loaded the bases, via a Mark Reynolds intentional walk, and a walk to Stephen Drew, moving up both Ryal and Reynolds, and with still one man out, but are stopped as Gerardo Parra hits into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Drew at second, to end the inning, before Parra is thrown out of the game for throwing him helmet in frustration. The Phils won the game in the eleventh as, with two men on, and with one man out, Wilson Valdez hits an RBI single, scoring Ransom, who had earlier walked, and had gone on to second on Ruiz’s single, as the throw to the plate hits the mound, slowing it up, giving the Phils’ a walk-off 3-2 win.
Kyle Kendrick gets a no-decision as he pitches six and one-third innings, giving up a run on four hits and three walks, while striking out five. Chad Durbins collects his ninth hold of the year as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up a hit. Ryan Madson receives his first hold of the year as he pitches an inning, plus a batter, giving up a run on one hit. J.C. Romero threw his second blown save of the year, as he pitches an inning, giving up a hit and two walks. Brad Lidge pitches a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two. Jose Contreras gets the win, as he pitches a scoreless inning, as he walks a batter, and strikes out one. His record is now 5-3 with a 3.86 ERA. Joe Saunders also took a no-decision in his first start as a D-back, as he pitches seven innings, giving up two runs on nine hits, while he strikes out four. Aaron Heilman pitches two 1-2-3 innings. Esmerling Vasquez took the lost as he pitches an inning and a third, giving up a run on three hits and three walks, as he strikes out two. His record is now 1-4 with a 4.62 ERA.
The Phils had twelve hits in the game, with Wilson Valdez leading the team with three hits, all singles, knocking in a run, the game winner. He was followed by Placido Polanco, Cody Ransom and Carlos Ruiz, who had two hits each, with Polanco and Ruiz’s hits being both a single and a double, with Ruiz knocking in a run, while Ransom’s hits were both singles, as he scored two runs. Raul Ibanez and Kyle Kendrick had the other two Phils’ hits, with Ibanez’s hit being a solo home run, and Kendrick’s hit being a single. The offense struck at the right moment to win the ball game.
The Phils (56-46, 2nd) will now go on the road to face the Nationals (44-58, 5th) for three in Washington, D.C. The game will be played at Nationals Park and will begin at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phils’ starter will be Roy Oswalt (0-0, -.–) who they have just gotten from the Astros in a trade completed yesterday. In his last start for the Astros, he received a lost against the Reds on July 24, as he pitched five innings, giving up six runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out three, in the Astros’ 7-0 lost. In his last three starts for the Astros, his record is 1-2, as he pitched eighteen innings, giving up eight runs on seventeen hits and three walks, while he struck out sixteen. He will be trying to show his new team that he was worth the trade and will give the team a 1-2-3 punch along with the Doc, and King Cole. The Nationals will counter with Craig Stammen (2-4, 5.50), who is coming off a no-decison against the Brewers on July 23, as he pitched five innings, giving up three runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out three, in the Nats’ 7-5 lost. In his last three starts, his record is 0-1 with two no-decisions, as he pitched sixteen and a third innings, giving up eight runs on seventeen hits and six walks, while he had struck out eleven. He will be trying to hand the Phils’ their first lost in nine games. The Phils’ will be trying to extend their winning streak to nine games at the expense of the Nats, while hoping to shrink the Braves’ lead in the East to a game and a half.
For the fourth time in as many start, Cliff Lee dominates the opposing batters, this time by pitching a complete game two-hitter, as he allowed in only an unearned run, as the Phils defeat the D-backs, 8-1. They increase their lead over the Marlins to five-and-a-half games as the fish lose to the Astros.
The Phils took the lead in the third as, with a runner on first, and with one out, Chase Utley hits a two-run home run to center field, his twenty-fifth home run of the season, scoring ahead of him Shane Victorino, who had just walked, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead. The D-backs would cut the Phils’ lead in half in the fourth as, with a man on third base, and with one man out, Stephen Drew hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Ryan Roberts, who had earlier reached base on a Pedro Feliz fielding error as he misplayed the ball, going to second on the error, then reaching third on Augie Ojeda’s ground out, 4-3, making it 2-1 Phils. That would turn out to be as much offense as the D-backs will be able to mustard. In the fifth, the Phils would bust the game wide open as, with two men on, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hit a three-run bomb into left center field, his thirty-first home run of the year, knocking in Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier double, and had gone to third on Victorino’s single, and Victorino, who had earlier singled, to give the Phils a 5-1 lead. The Phils then made it 6-1 as Jayson Werth followed Howard with a solo home run, his twenty-sixth home run of the season. In the top of the sixth, with one man out, pinch hitter Chad Tracy got on base with a pinch hit single, ending Lee’s no-hit bit at five and a third innings, before being stranded at first as the next two D-back hitters flew out to right (Roberts) and struck out looking (Ojeda). The Phils would increase their lead to 7-1 in the bottom half of the inning as, with a man on second, and with two men out, Victorino hits an RBI double, scoring Lee, who had earlier got on base with a single, and then went to second on a wild pitch. In the seventh,the Phils added another run as, with one man out, Werth hits a solo home run, his second of the night and his twenty-seventh home run of the year, making it an 8-1 Phils’ lead. That would be more than enough for Lee, as he would only allow two more base runners after giving up the single, a hit batter in the top of the seventh (Rusty Ryal) and a single in the eighth (Alex Romero), mowing down the D-backs in the ninth inning with a fly out to right (Josh Whitesell), a fly out to left (Drew) and a strike out swinging (Mark Reynolds), as he recorded a two-hitter, and his fourth straight victory since becoming a Phil and his seventh straight win in his last seven starts.
Cliff Lee picked up the win as he pitched a complete game, his second since joining the Phils, as he gave up an unearned run on two hits and a hit batter, while striking out eleven batters, tying a career high. His record is now 11-9 (4-0) with an ERA of 2.72 (0.82). Dan Haren took the lost as he lasted only five innings, giving up six runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out six. His record is now 12-8 with a 2.74 ERA. Clay Zavada pitched one and a third innings, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out two. Juan Gutierrez pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on one hit, while he struck out one. Blaine Boyer pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, as he struck out a batter.
The Phils had thirteen hits in the game, with Jayson Werth leading the way with three hits, with two of his hits being solo home runs, raising his average to .267. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley, and yes, Cliff Lee, followed with two hits apiece, with one of Shane’s hits being an RBI double, while one of Utley’s hits was a two-run home run. Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez and Paul Boko had the other four Phils’ hits, with Rollins’ being a double, and Howard’s being a three-run bomb which broke the game wide open. All but one of the Phils’ run came via the long ball, something the Phils do very well, but they will need to rely on less if they hope to win their second straight league title and world series championship.
The Phillies (68-49, 1st National League East) will conclude their short home stand with the Diamondbacks (54-67, 4th National League West) with a night game. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm. The Phils will send to the mound Joe Blanton (7-6, 3.88), who is coming off a no-decision against the Braves on August 14, where he pitched seven innings, giving up just two runs, only one of which was earned, on seven hits and a walk, while striking out two, in the Phils’ 3-2 win. He will be trying for his first win in about a month, while also going for the series sweep. He will be opposed by Doug Davis (7-10, 3.59), who is coming off a no-decision of his own against the Dodgers on August 15, as he went six innings, giving up two runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out two, in the D-backs’ 4-3 win. He will be trying to prevent the sweep. The Phils will be trying to end the short home stand on a positive note, before going onto the road to face the hurting Mets for four games, and then the lowly Pirates for three, with a good chance to increase their lead in the East over the Marlins by the time they come back home.