Tagged: Strikeout

Cole Hamels throws a seven innings plus five-hitter at the Nats as the Phillies defeated the Nationals, 4-0.

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. 

Not again???? *&^$#!!!! And this time, an umpire gets into the act???? GGGRRRR!!!!

The Phillies let another game slip out of their hands as they blow another lead, losing to the Cubs, 3-2. And, to add insult to injury, a bad umpire’s call may have hurt them this time. Like yesterday, the Phillies would score first, as, with two men on and two outs, Pat Burrell would hit a RBI single, knocking in Chase Utley, who has been hit by the pitch, and then would move up to second on Ryan Howard’s walk, giving the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. The game would then become a pitchers’ duel between two former A’s teammates, Phillies’ starter Joe Blanton and Cubs’ starter Rich Harden. As the Phillies’ batter would be patient at the plate, causing Harden’s pitch count to rise, Blanton would breeze quickly through the first four innings, giving up only a lead-off walk and a hit. The Phillies would finally get their second run off of Harden when, with a runner on first and two outs, Howard would hit a single to right, with Utley, who has gotten on first with a single, would go to third on the hit. Cubs’ right fielder Kosuke Fukudome would then commit a throwing error, which would allow Utley to score, to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead. The Cubs would cut the Phillies’ lead to 2-1, as, with runners on the corners on and one out, Daryle Ward would hit a ground ball to Utley. Utley would throw to Jimmy Rollins for the inning’s second out, removing Henry Blanco, who has earlier singled, but he would then make an errant throw to first, which would pull Howard off the first base bag, because of Blanco’s slide which would force Rollins to make a quick throw when he actually have time to throw out Ward, which would not be recorded as an error. The blunder would allow Mark DeRose, who has earlier walked, stole second and has moved to third on Blanco’s single, to score the Cubs’ first run. Blanton would then end the inning by getting Alfonso Soriano to pop out. Blanton would then melt down on the mound in the sixth, as he proceed to walk first Ryan Theriot and then Derrick Lee. After getting out the next two batters, with the runners both moving up a base on the second out, he would then walk DeRosa to load the bases. That was enough for Charlie Manuel, as he would come out to take out Blanton and replace him with Scott Eyre. Eyre would, unfortunatley, walk Fukudome on five pitches, forcing in Theriot, and tying the game at two all, while leaving the bases loaded. Eyre would end the inning by striking out Blanco. In the seventh, the Phillies would try to retake the lead, with runners on the corners and two out, Howard would hit a ball at Cubs’ first baseman Lee, who would proceed to boot the ball, but would somehow be able to throw it in time to pitcher Jeff Samardzija, to get out Howard. This would lead to an argument between Howard,  Manuel, Davey Lopes and first base umpire Chris Guccione, while, according to the Phillies’ announcers, Howard, Lopes and Manuel had a point as Howard would actually beat Lee’s throw to first, which would have given the Phillies the lead with Rollins, who was safe on a force out, moved to second on Shane Victorino’s walk and has gone to third during another force out, coming across the plate during the play. Third base coach Steve Smith would eventually be ejected from the game by home plate umpire Bill Welke for still arguing the call. This would turn out to be huge, as, in the Cubs’ half of the seventh, with one out, Clay Condrey would give up a solo home run to Soriano, his twenty-third home run of the year, to give the Cubs a 3-2 lead. This would be the final score, as the Phillies would be unable to score in the eighth inning, and after turning back the Cubs in their half of the eighth, would be unable to get anything done in the ninth, as Carlos Marmol would record his seventh save of the season.

Joe Blanton would get a no-decision as he pitches five and two-thirds innings, giving up only two earned runs on two hits and five very costly walks. Scott Eyre would get his second blown save of the season, as he pitches a third of an inning, giving up only one walk, which sadly brought in the tying run, and one strikeout. Clay Condrey would get the lost as he pitches an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. His record is now 3-4 with a 3.58 ERA. Rudy Seanez would also pitch an inning, as he gives up no run on one hit. Rich Harden would also receive a no-decision as he would only last five innings, giving up two runs, only one of which was earned, on three hits. Chad Gaudin would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit. Jeff Samardzija would get the win as he pitches an inning and a third, giving up no runs on two hits. Carlos Marmol would get his seventh save of the year as he pitches one and two-thirds innings of scoreless ball, giving up no hits while striking out three.

Multiply factors would kill the Phillies today. First, Blanton’s five walks. Four of those walks would lead to the two runs that he would give up, especially the three walks that he would give up in the sixth inning, loading the bases. Although it would be Scott Eyre who would walk home the tying run, it would never have happened if Blanton had been able to throw strikes when he needed to, especially after getting ahead of the hitters. Secondly, the offense. Although they would force Rich Harden to leave the game early by getting him to work long pitch counts, they would be unable to get a key hit when they needed it when they threaten to score in the early innings. Business as usual for the offense. Third, Jimmy Rollins’ blunder in the fifth, when he could’ve taken his time to throw to first for the third out on Daryle Ward’s grounder to Utley, but instead would rush his throw because of Harry Blanco coming at him to break up the double play. Instead of the score staying 2-0 Phils, it became 2-1 Phillies because he would force Ryan Howard off of the bag to keep it from going past him. And lastly, the umpire’s call in the seventh inning on Howard’s grounder to first that would bounce off of Derrick Lee’s glove. According to instant reply, Howard has actually beaten Samardzija to the bag, but first base umpire Chris Guccione would call Howard out. The broadcasters think that this is the result of the same umpire earlier calling Utley safe on the previous play when he might’ve been beaten by the throw. If it is, it really stinks! as it kept the Phillies from retaking the lead. Oh man, how much more of this do we Phillies’ fan have to suffer through before we all go mad? Or when will all of this buzzard luck finally start to go our boys’ way?

The Phillies (73-62) will continue their four games series with the Cubs (85-50, 1st National League Central), now trying for a split in the series. The game will be nationally televised by Fox Sports and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern (2:55 pm Central) in Wrigley Field. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (7-10, 4.49), who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on August 25, as he pitches seven shut out innings, giving up nine scattered hits while striking out eight, in the Phillies’ 5-0 win. He will be trying to pitch his six straight quality start since returning from the minors and improving his record to 5-1 in his last eight starts, while trying to stop the Phillies’ present slide at three games. The Cubs’ starter will be Ted Lilly (13-7, 4.23), who is coming off a win against the Pirates on August 25, as he went seven innings, giving up only three earned run on seven hits while striking out seven, in the Cubs’ 12-3 rout. He will be trying to see if he can continue the Cubs’ seven game winning streak and continue the Phillies’ current losing streak.

With the lost, the Phillies are presently trailing the Mets by two game and lead the Marlins by five games, as the Mets defeated the Marlins. The Phillies will be trying to regroup so that they can come back and split the series before continuing their long road trip.

Brett Myers throws seven innings of shutout ball as the Phillies sweep the Dodgers, 5-0. Bring on the Mets!!!

Brett Myers and the bullpen would combine to shutout the Dodgers on thirteen hits as the Phillies would complete their four games sweep of the Dodgers, their first four games sweep of the Bums in Philly since 1929. After Brett Myers and Dodgers’ starter Chad Billingsley are both able to get out of first inning jams, the Phillies would score their first runs in the second inning, as, with two men on and two outs, Jimmy Rollins would hit a two-run single, scoring Jayson Werth, who has gotten on base earlier with a walk, and Pedro Feliz, who has earlier singled, and who would both move up a base on Myers’ sacrifice bunt, to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead. The Phillies would increase their lead in the fifth, as Pat Burrell would hit into a double play, doubling up Chase Utley, who has earlier singled, as Rollins scored on the play, having gotten on base with a double, and moving over to third on Utley’s single, to make it 3-0 Phillies. They would then threathen to score some more runs in the inning by loading up the bases via a walk to Ryan Howard, a single to Shane Victorino and another walk to Werth. But Billingsley would finally end the inning by getting Feliz to ground out. The Dodgers would then threathen to score in the top of the seventh as they loaded up the bases via two singles (Mark Sweeney and Andre Ethier) and a walk (Matt Kemp), with one out. But Myers would get out of the inning by first striking out Jeff Kent, and then getting Manny Ramirez to fly out deep to right. The Phillies would then score their final runs in their half of the seventh, as, with a man on third with one out, Werth would hit a RBI single, scoring Howard, who has earlier doubled and then move to third on Burrell’s ground out to first, to give the Phillies a 4-0 lead. After moving to second base on Feliz’s single, Werth would score all the way from second on Chris Coste’s ground out, second to first, as he kept on running off of the crack of the bat, to make it 5-0 Phillies. That would be the ballgame as J.C. Romero and Clay Condrey would both come in to pitch a pair of scoreless innings, although the Dodgers would threathen to score in both innings.

Brett Myers would get the win as he pitches seven innings of shut out ball, giving up nine scattered hits, as he struck out eight batters while walking three. His record is now at 7-10, 4-1 since coming back from the minors, with his ERA dropping to 4.49. J.C. Romero and Clay Condrey would both pitch a scoreless inning, with both giving up two hits apiece while striking out one man each. Chad Billingsley would get the lost as he goes six innings, giving up three earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 10-8 with a 3.15 ERA. Chan Ho Park would pitch an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Tanyon Sturtze would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits.

For the third time in the four games series, the offense would end up getting ten hits, with Jimmy Rollins leading the way this time as he is just a hit short of getting the cycle, as he goes 3 for 3 with a single, a double and a triple, along with a walk and also being hit by the pitch, as he also knocks in two runs while scoring one more, as he has his first multi-hit game since the August 9 game against the Pirates. He was followed by Chase Utley and Pedro Feliz who each had two hits, as all of the starters, except for Pat Burrell and Chris Coste, who both took the collar, would have at least one hit. If the Phillies’ offense continues like this in their series with the Mets, the team from New York might soon find themselves once again trailing the Phillies.

The Phillies (72-59) will now face the first place Mets (73-59) in an important two games series for first place in the National League East. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will begin at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (11-7, 3.54), who is coming off a no-decision against the Nationals on August 21, going six and two-thirds innings, giving up just an earned run on five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-3 lost. His last two starts against the Mets were a pair of no-decisions, both of which would eventually be lost by the Phils, as he would go a combined thirteen and two-thirds innings, giving up four earned runs on nine hits. He will be looking to pitch his fifteenth straight good start, as he goes for his second straight win, while trying to pitch the Phillies back into first place. The Mets will counter with Pedro Martinez (4-3, 3.97), who is coming off a no-decision against the Braves on August 21, as he pitched seven innings, giving up four earned runs on seven hits, in the Mets’ 5-4 win. In his last start against the Phillies on July 7, he would get the win as he pitches five and one thirds inning, giving up two earned runs on five hits, in the Mets’ 10-9 win. He will be trying to keep the Mets in first place in the East against a resurgent Phillies’ offense.

The Phillies trail the Mets by a half game as they prepare for a very important two games series with the Mets. The Marlins trail the Phillies by five games as they took the day off last night as they prepare for a three games series with the once mighty Braves. The Phillies will be trying to regain first place from the Mets before they head off to Chicago to play a three games series with the Major League leading Cubs.

Pedro Feliz’s bat and glove leads Phillies to an extra-inning walk-off victory over the Dodgers, 5-2. The Phillies are now half a game behind the Mets in the East.

Pedro Feliz’s bat would knock in four late innings runs, while his glove would help stop the Dodgers in the tenth as the Phillies win a walk-off victory against the Dodgers in extra-innings, 5-2. The Dodgers would get their first run of the game in the first, when, with the bases loaded, and one out, James Lanier would hit a RBI single, knocking in Andre Ethier, who has gotten on base with a five-balls walk  (Yes, five-balls. The home plate umpire, Jerry Layne, at some point in the count, thought it was 2-2, when it was in fact 3-2, before Phillies’ starter Joe Blanton finally walked Ethier), moved to second on Jeff Kent’s single and then went to third when Manny Ramirez was hit by the pitch, giving the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. Blanton would finally get out of the inning by getting Nomar Garciaparra to fly out and Casey Blake to strike out. The game would then become a pitchers’ duel between Blanton and Dodgers’ starter Hiroki Kuroda, with Blanton giving up only four more hits and two more walks while striking out four Dodgers’ batters before being lifted after six innings of work, while Kuroda would keep the Phillies silent for four innings, giving up no hits at that point, while only four men would get on base (Error, two walks and a hit batsman). The Phillies would tie the game in the fifth as Chase Utley would hit a RBI single, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier singled, and then went to second on Blanton’s sacrifice bunt. The Dodgers would retake the lead in the seventh, when, with a runner on second, and two outs, Kent would hit a RBI single, scoring Ethier, who has earlier walked, and then got to second base on Ryan Madson’s wild pitch, giving the Dodgers a 2-1 lead. The Phillies would come back to tie it at two all in the ninth, when, with two men on, and two out, Pedro Feliz, who has come in as a defensive replacement for Greg Dobbs in the seventh during a double switch when Madson came in to replace J.C. Romero on the mound, would get a RBI single, scoring Shane Victorino, who has singled, and has gone to second on Eric Bruntlett’s sacrifice bunt. In the Dodgers’ tenth, they would try to regain the lead as they loaded the bases with two singles (Ramirez and Loney) and a walk (Mark Sweeney) with nobody out. The next batter, Blake, would then hit the ball to third. After catching the ball, Feliz would tag the bag for the first out, beating Loney to the bag, and then throw home to double up Ramirez, who would be tagged out by Chris Coste, for a 5-2 double play, as Sweeney would move up to second and Blake would be safe at first. Chad Durbin would then end the inning by getting Russell Martin to fly out to right. In the bottom of the eleventh, the Phillies would go to work against Dodgers’ reliever Joe Beimel, who was starting his second inning of work. Victorino would start off the inning with a double. After Joe Torre comes out to replace Beimel with Jason Johnson, Coste would get a walk, putting runners on first and second with nobody out. Jayson Werth would then hit a grounder to the right side, to second baseman Pablo Ozuna, who would throw to first for the inning’s first out, while Victorino and Werth would move up to third and second base respectively. Cole Hamels would then come up to pinch hit with the Dodgers’ infield and most of the outfield in to try and prevent the run from scoring. Hamels would sadly pop up the first pitch thrown at him, that would be caught by Ozuna for the second out of the inning. This would bring up Feliz. On the first pitch, Feliz would hit it deep to center field for a three-run home run, his thirteenth home run of the year, scoring Victornio and Coste, as he gives the Phillies an extra-inning walk-out win, 5-2.

Joe Blanton would get his third straight no-decision as he goes six innings, giving up only an earned run on six hits, three walks and a hit batter, while striking out four. J.C. Romero, would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up an earned run on a hit and a walk. Ryan Madson would pitch an inning and a third, giving up no runs on two hits. Brad Lidge would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Chad Durbin would get the win as he pitches two scoreless innings, giving up three hits and a walk. His record is now 5-2 with a 1.98 ERA. Hiroki Kuroda would also get a no-decision as he also goes six innings, giving up an earned run on two hits as he struck out five. Chan Ho Park would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Hong-Chih Kuo would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Jonathan Broxton would pick up his fifth blown save of the year as he goes an inning, giving up an earned run on two hits. Joe Beimel would get the lost as he pitches one inning plus one batter, giving up an earned run on one hit and a walk. His record is now 4-1 with a ERA of 1.95. Jason Johnson pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on a hit and a walk.

After two straight games of getting ten hits, the offense would be limited to seven hits in the third game of the four games series with the Dodgers, but they would count the most when they came, as the bottom of the order would once again cause the damage as Shane Victorino would be involved in the rallies that would score the tying and winning runs, while Carlos Ruiz would score the Phillies’ first run and Pedro Feliz, coming in as a late innings’ replacement, would knock in the tying and winning runs as he batted in the ninth spot. The bottom part of the line-up have ended up being responsible for three of the last five Phillies’ win, and have done most of the scoring in their last lost. If the bottom half of the line-up continues to score runs after Victornio’s placement into the fifth hole, the Phillies should continue to be a team no longer to be taken lightly. Once the first five batters have decided to once again hit, this team should be tough to beat down the stretch. But, we probably won’t know which way the team will be going until after the end of the series with the Mets.

The Phillies (71-59) will end their four games series with the Dodgers (65-65, 2nd National League West) with a night game tonight, nationally televised on ESPN2, as they look for a sweep of the Bums. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (6-10, 4.71), who is coming off a nine hit shut out of the Nationals on August 20, in the Phillies’ 4-0 victory, his fifth straight quality start since his return from the minors. His only start against the Dodgers was a hard luck lost on August 14, where he went seven innings, giving up only three earned runs on five hits, in the Phillies’ 3-1 lost. He will be trying for his four win since coming back from the minors and his sixth straight quality start. The Dodgers will counter with Chad Billingsley (12-9, 3.10), who is coming off a no-decision against the Rockies on August 20, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits, in the Dodgers’ 4-3 lost. He did not face the Phillies during the last series. He will be trying to stop the slide and thereby avoid the sweep.

The Phillies now trail the Mets by half a game as the Mets lost to the Astros last night. They are ahead of the Marlins by four and a half games as the fish defeated the D-backs last night. The Phillies will be trying to perform a sweep of the Dodgers, in revenge for the Dodgers’ sweep last week, while hoping that the Astros will defeat the Mets, putting them back into first place, before their two games series with the Mets, starting tomorrow night.

Brett Myers pitches his first complete game shutout since 2004 as he nine hit the Nats, 4-0.

Brett Myers gives up nine hits and no runs to the Nationals as he pitches his first complete game shutout since May 20, 2004, as the Phils defeat the Nationals, 4-0. Myers got saved in the first inning, when, with two men on and two outs, Ryan Zimmerman, who has reached base on a Greg Dobbs’ throwing error and have gone to second on a walk to Lastings Milledge, would try to score on a Ronnie Belliard single to left. He would be cut down at the plate by a good throw by Pat Burrell, as Chris Coste supplies the tag, which would end the inning. The Phillies would take a 1-0 lead in the third, when, with two men on and one out, Coste, who has been hit by the pitch, and would reach second on a fielder’s choice ground out on a failed sacrifice bunt attempt by Myers, would score on a throwing error by rookie shortstop Anderson Hernandez, when he tried to double up Jimmy Rollins, and instead threw the ball past the glove of first baseman Belliard. The Nationals would threaten to tie the score in the fifth as they get Emilio Bonifacio to third on an infield single, a stolen base and a ground out, second to first. Myers would end the threat by striking out Zimmerman, one of nine strike out victims. The Phillies would then increase their lead in the bottom half of the inning, as Dobbs would hit a two-run home run, his sixth home run of the year, scoring Shane Victorino, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, to make it a 3-0 Phillies’ lead. Later in the inning, with a runner on third, and two outs, Jayson Werth would hit a RBI double, scoring Coste, who has earlier singled, to give the Phillies a 4-0 lead. That would be the final score as Myers would dominate the Nats for the final four innings, giving up four singles, one in each of the last four innings, but refusing to give in as only one runner would even reach second base.

Brett Myers would get the win as he pitched nine innings of shut out ball, giving up nine scattered hits and striking out nine and walking only one batter. His record is now 6-10 with a 4.71 ERA. Since his return from the minors, in six starts, Myers has given up three earned runs or less in all six starts, while pitching six innings or more in all but one of his starts. His record since his return is 3-1, with two no-decisions, in which the Phillies are 1-1, with an ERA of 1.94. He has gone a total of forty-one and two-thirds innings, giving up only ten runs, nine of which were earned, on thirty hits. Myers is back and it is about time in my opinion. Collin Balester would get the lost as he goes six innings, giving up four runs, only three of which were earned, on seven hits. His record is now 2-6 with a 4.99 ERA. The rookie Marco Estrada would pitch two scoreless innings in relief, giving up only two hits.

The Phillies’ offense did better last night, as they got nine hits, although they wouldn’t get their first hit until the fourth inning on a single by Chase Utley. The hits would be spread more evenly between the top and bottom of the order, with Ryan Howard and Pat Burrell being the only starters without a hit. Is the offense getting ready to bust out? You guess is as good as mines, but I’m praying that it finally is getting ready to burst open, and I hate to be the first ballclub that they’ll take out their frustrations on.

The Phillies (68-58) will conclude their three games home stand with the luckless Nationals (44-83) as they look to sweep the Nats. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. Their starter will be 45 years old veteran Jamie Moyer (11-7, 3.64), who is coming off a gem of a start against the Padres on August 15 as he outduel fellow 1984 Draftie Greg Maddux, as he pitched seven shut out innings, giving up only three hits, in the Phillies’ 1-0 win. In his last start against the Nationals on July 30, he would get the win as he pitched six innings, giving up only three earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 8-5 win. He will be going for his twelfth win, while also going for his fourteenth straight start where he has given up three runs or less. The Nationals will counter with Tim Redding (8-8, 4.66), who is coming off a lost to the Rockies on August 15, where he went six innings, giving up four earned runs on seven hits, in the Nats’ 4-3 lost. In his last start against the Phillies on July 30, the Phillies would finally get to him, as they knocked in seven earned runs on ten hits as he would only be able to go four innings plus five batters. He will be trying to stop a personal two games losing streak while trying to stop the Nationals’ team losing streak at twelve games.

The Phillies still trail the Mets by one and a half games as they defeated the fastly fading Braves. The Phillies are now ahead of the equally fading Marlins by three and a half games as they lost a squeaker to the Giants. The Phillies will be looking for a sweep of the Nationals so that they can stay close to the Mets, before preparing for a four games weekend series with the Dodgers, and a bit of revenge for their previous week fiasco in LA.

The bullpen blows another lead as the offense once again goes awol after scoring some runs as the Phillies fall to the Dodgers, 7-6.

Chad Durbin for the second straight night allows the Dodgers to tie the score in the eighth inning, before the bullpen finally loses the game in the ninth, this time to a Nomar Garciaparra walk-off home run, as the Phillies’ offense is for the second straight night put to sleep by the Dodgers’ bullpen in the middle innings, after taking what should’ve been an early commanding lead. The Phillies would score four runs in the first on a pair of two-run home runs. After Jayson Werth is rubbed of a home run to right by Andre Ethier for the second out of the inning, Chase Utley would get on base as he is hit by the pitch. Ryan Howard would follow with his league leading thirty-second home run of the year, scoring Utley, for a quick 2-0 lead. Pat Burrell would then get on base with a walk. Greg Dobbs would then follow with his fifth home run of the year, scoring Burrell, to make it 4-0 Phils. The Dodgers would get a run back in their half of the first, when, with the bases loaded, and one out, Phillies’ starter Joe Blanton would give up a walk to James Loney, scoring Ethier, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, would move to second on Jeff Kent’s single and move to third on the walk to Manny Ramirez, making it 4-1 Phillies. Blanton would finally get out of the inning by striking out Casey Blake and getting Garciaparra to fly out to right. The Phillies would add to their lead in the second when, with a man on and two outs, Werth would hit his sixteenth home run of the year, knocking in Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier singled, to give the Phillies a 6-1 lead. That would be all the damage the Phillies would be able to do as the Dodgers’ bullpen, starting in the fourth inning, would give them only one more hit, four walks and a hit batter, while squashing threats in the fifth and sixth innings. In the meantime, the Dodgers would chip away at the Phillies’ lead. It would start in the third as Ramirez, who owns Blanton, would hit his twenty-fifth home run of the year, scoring Kent, who has earlier singled, to reduce the Phillies’ lead to 6-3. Then in the fourth, Blanton would give up another home run, this time a solo shot to Ethier, his twelfth home run of the year, cutting the lead down to 6-4. After Blanton gets out of the fifth inning without any further damage, he hands the ball over to Ryan Madson, who would proceed to get out six of the seven batters he would face in two innings of relief. Chad Durbin is then given the ball so that he can hand it over to Brad Lidge for a save opportunity in the ninth. Sadly, it didn’t happen as Durbin would end up blowing his fourth save of the year. The inning would start with a single by Russell Martin. Durbin would then walk pinch hitter Juan Pierre, putting runners on first and second with nobody outs. Matt Kemp would then line out to Werth for the first out of the inning. The next batter, Ethier, would then hit the ball to Ryan Howard. Instead of throwing to Jimmy Rollins at second to force out Pierre, Howard would instead go to first, not confident that his throw would actually get to Rollins. That lack of confidence would prove costly as Durbin would then give up a two-run double to Kent, tying the score at six all. Durbin would then intentionally walk Ramirez, after getting behind in the count 3-0. That would be it for Durbin, as he is replaced by J.C. Romero. Romero would finally end the inning by getting Loney to ground into a force out, shortstop to third base. In the ninth, with one man out, Clay Condrey would throw a walk-off home run to Garciaparra, his sixth home run of the year, to give the Dodgers a 7-6 walk-off victory.

Joe Blanton gets a no-decision as he pitches five rough innings, giving up four earned runs on nine hits and three walks, while striking out six. Ryan Madson would pitch two strong innings of relief, as he gives up no runs on no hits, and strike out three, while one man reached base on a fielding error. Chad Durbin would blow his fourth save of the year and his second in this series, as he goes two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on two hits and two walks. J.C. Romero would pitch a third of an inning, getting out the only hitter he would face. Clay Condrey would take the lost as he pitches a third of an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit, Garciaparra’s walk-off home run. His record is now 3-3 with a 3.71 ERA. Brad Penny would also receive a no-decision as he only last three innings, giving up six earned runs on six hits, a hit batter and two walks, while striking out four. Jason Johnson would pitch two and two-thirds innings of shut out ball, giving up one hit and walking two, while striking out five. Joe Beimel would face only two batters, giving up a walk and hitting a batter. Chan Ho Park would pitch two and a third innings of shut out ball, giving up no hits. Jonathan Broxton would get the win as he pitches a 1-2-3 ninth, with two strikeouts. His record is now 3-3 with an ERA of 3.58.

Sigh. It’s becoming a broken record. Offense strikes early, gets nothing going in the middle innings and is unable to get a clutch hit when they do threathen to score. Now the bullpen is getting into the act, as it, or rather Chad Durbin, has now blown two straight save opportunities. Although the main culprit, as always, is the Phillies’ offense, we now add Ryan Howard’s sad defense as well, as his fear of maybe not throwing the ball straight to Jimmy Rollins for a force out causes him to instead go for the sure out at first. Listening to the broadcast crew, it would appear that Jay-Ro did not agree with Howard’s decision. And to be honest, neither do I, since if Ryan had thrown the ball to second and had gotten Juan Pierre out, then the next batter, Jeff Kent, would probably have knocked in only one run with his double. But we will never know for sure since that was not the actual result. It would seem that the offense needs someone or something to break them out of their collective funk, like the Dodgers getting Manny Ramirez have gotten them going. Too bad our cheapskate managment isn’t thinking like that. Double sigh.

The Phillies (64-56, T-1st) will play the final game of their four game set with the Dodgers (61-59, T-1st National League West) tonight. The game will be played at Dodgers Stadium and will start at 10:10 pm Eastern (7:10 pm Pacific). The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (5-9, 5.09), who is coming off a win against the Pirates on August 9, where he went seven and two-thirds innings, giving up only an earned run on five hits, while striking out six, in the Phillies’ 4-2 win. He has pitched rather well since coming back from his stint in the minors, going 2-0 in four starts, with a 2.10 ERA, while the Phils have gone 1-1 in his other two starts. Against the Dodgers in nine starts, he is 3-1 with a 2.76 ERA. He will be looking to make it four good starts in a row while trying to salvage a win in the series for the Phils and keep them in at least a tie for first place in the East. His opponent will be Hiroki Kuroda (6-8, 4.02), who is coming off a no-decision against the Giants on August 9, where he pitched eight innings, giving up only one earned run on eight hits, in the Dodgers’ 3-2 lost. He will be trying to help the Dodgers sweep the Phillies, while keeping them at least tied for first in the West.

The Phillies are now tied for first with the Mets as they defeated the Nationals for the second game in a row, while the two teams both lead the Marlins by a game and a half after the Marlins’ lost to the Cardinals. Their lead over the Braves is at nine games as the Braves were swept by the Cubs in a day/night doubleheader. The Phillies will be trying to salvage a win tonight in LA before they head on to San Diego where they will be facing some more tough pitching, hoping against hope that the offense will finally break out of its year long funk. Otherwise, they will be looking up to see themselves trailing the Mets and being just ahead of the fish in the standings.

Cole Hamels is once again denied his tenth win of the year, this time hurt by the long ball.

Cole Hamels is once again denied his tenth victory of the year as he gives up two home runs, which would account for four of the five runs that he would give up, as the Cardinals defeat the Phillies, 6-3. The Cardinals would take control of the game in the third, when, with two men on and nobody out, Joe Mather would hit a three-run home run, his fifth home run of the year, scoring Skip Schumaker, who has earlier singled, and Cesar Izturis, who has walked earlier, to give the Cardinals a 3-0 lead. Four batters later, Yadier Molina would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Ryan Ludwick, who has earlier singled, moved to second on Eric Bruntlett’s throwing error, and has moved to third on Troy Glaus’ single, to give the Cardinals a 4-0 lead. The Cardinals would increase their lead to 5-0 in the fifth when Ludwick would hit a solo home run off of Cole Hamels, his twenty-fourth home run of the year. The Phillies would finally get to Kyle Lohse in the sixth. Shane Victorino would start the inning off with a double. Chase Utley would follow with a RBI double, scoring Victornio, to make it 5-1 Cardinals. After Ryan Howard strikes out, Pat Burrell would hit a two-run home run, his twenty-seventh home run of the year, scoring Utley, making it 5-3 Cardinals. After giving up a double to Geoff Jenkins, Lohse would be taken out of the game for Russ Springer. Springer would then proceed to get Bruntlett to strike out and Carlos Ruiz to ground out, short to first, to end the inning. In the eighth, the Cardinals would increase their lead as Ludwick would hit his second solo home run of the night, his twenty-fifth home run of the year, to make it 6-3 Cardinals. The Phillies would threathen to tie the game in the ninth. With runners on second and third and two outs, Jason Isringhausen would get Victorino to ground out, second to first, to end the game, as he records his twelfth save of the year.

Cole Hamels would get the lost as he is once again denied his tenth win, thanks in part to him throwing several high fastballs in the third inning, one of which would eventually leave the park. He would go sixth innings, giving up five runs, four of which were earned, on six hits. His record is now 9-7 with a 3.37 ERA. Ryan Madson would pitch two innings, giving up an earned run on two hits. Karl Lohse would get the win, going five and a third innings, as he gave up three earned runs on five hits. His record is now 13-3 with a 3.73 ERA. Russ Springer would pitch two-thirds of an inning, getting out both men whom he would face. Jaime Garcia would pitch one and two-thirds inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Jason Isringhausen would go one and a third innings, giving up no runs on no hits as he records his twelfth save.

Karl Lohse would keep the Phillies’ offense quiet until the sixth inning, when they would finally score some runs off of him, but it would end up not being enough as the Phillies would fail to light up the Cardinals’ bullpen, as the Phillies’ five games winning streak ends. Hopefully this will only lead to a reverse of what happen in the previous series played here back in June, when the Phillies started the series with a blow out and then counldn’t do anything afterwards; maybe this time the Phillies will be able to do something about the Cardinals’ pitching and score some runs. Guess we’ll only find out during the next two games.

The Phillies (59-50) will continue their three games set with the Cardinals (62-50, 2nd-T National League Central) with a night game from Busch Stadium. The game will begin at 7:15 pm Eastern  (6:15 pm Central). The Phillies will be sending to the mound Joe Blanton (5-12, 5.13), who is coming off a no-decision against the Braves on July 27, when he would only pitch two innings because of the two hours plus rain delay, giving up two earned runs on three hits, in the Phillies’ 12-10 win. This will be the first time that Blanton will face the Cardinals, which hopefully will be to Blanton’s advantage. Blanton will be trying for his first victory as a Phil as he makes his third start since being traded to the Phillies. The Cardinals’ starter will be Branden Looper (10-4, 4.38), who is coming off a win against the Braves on July 28, as he went seven innings, giving up only two earned runs on seven hits, in the Cardinals’ 12-3 win. He has already faced the Phillies once this year back on July 10, where he would go six innings, giving up four earned runs on seven hits, in the Cardinals’ 4-1 lost. Looper will be trying to improve his record while seeing if he can do better than he did the first time against the Phils.

The Phillies are still leading the Mets by a game as they lost to the Astros. The Marlins are still trailing the Phillies by a game and a half as the Rockies defeat them. The Braves still trail the Phillies by nine games as they lost to the Brewers. The Phillies will once again be trying to increase their lead in the East before going home to meet the Marlins this coming Tuesday.