Tagged: Tim Redding

A two-run shot by Chase Utley help lead J.A. Happ to his tenth victory of the year.

As J.A. Happ pitched seven strong innings against the Mets, a two-run strike by Chase Utley help lead the Phils to a 4-1 win over New York, giving Happ his tenth win of the season. A Braves victory over the Marlins put the Phils back to being six-and-a-half games over both the Braves and the Marlins.

The Mets took the lead in the second as, with a runner on third, and with two men out, Omir Santos hits an RBI single, knocking in Jeff Fancoeur, who had earlier doubled, and had gone on to third as Daniel Murphy hits into a 4-6-3 double play, as Fernando Tatis, who had just walked, was wiped out at second, giving the Mets a 1-0 lead. The game then became a pitchers’ duel between Mets’ starter Tim Redding, who gave Phils’ batters fits for five innings, giving up only one hit, a single by Chase Utley with two outs in the third inning, and three walks, while Phils’ starter J.A. Happ refused to break, as the Mets would end up with eight scattered hits and two walks, before he finally leaves the game after pitching seven innings, giving up only the run in the second. The Phils’ bats, once Redding had left the game, then went to work. In the sixth, with a runner on base, and with noone out, Utley hits a two-run home run, his twenty-sixth home run of the year, scoring Shane Victorino, who had earlier walked, to give the Phils a 2-1 lead. Four batters later, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Pedro Feliz hits an RBI double, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had earlier doubled, making it 3-1 Phils. The Phils then added an insurance run in the eighth as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Ryan Howard, a Jayson Werth double, which sent Howard over to third base, and a Feliz intentional walk, with one man out, Carlos Ruiz hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Howard from third, giving the Phils a 4-1 lead. That would be the final score as Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would get out the last six Mets’ batters, with Lidge recording his twenty-fourth save of the season.

J.A. Happ got the win as he pitched seven strong innings, giving up only one run on eight hits and two walks, while striking out a batter. His record is now 10-2 with an ERA of 2.59. Ryan Madson pitched a 1-2-3 inning, recording his twenty-first hold, as he struck out two batters. Brad Lidge also pitched a 1-2-3 inning as he recorded his twenty-fourth save of the year, also striking out two batters. Tim Redding received a no-decision as he pitched five strong innings, giving up only one hit and three walks, while he struck out four. Pat Misch took the lost as he threw his first blown save of the year, giving up two runs on one hit and a walk, in one-thirds of an inning. His record is now 0-1 with a 5.00 ERA. Sean Green pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up one run on two hits and a walk, while striking out one. Elmer Dessens pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Pedro Feliciano pitched a third of an inning, giving up a run on one hit and a walk. Brian Stokes pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up just a walk. Nelson Figueroa pitched a shut-out inning, giving up two hits and a walk, while striking out a batter.

The Phillies had only seven hits in the game, with Chase Utley and Jayson Werth leading the way with two hits each, with one of Utley’s hits being a two-run home runs, knocking in two runs, while one of Werth’s hits was a double. Ryan Howard, Raul Ibanez and Pedro Feliz had the other three Phils’ hits, with Ibanez’s hit being a double, and Feliz’s hit being an RBI double. Carlos Ruiz knocked in the other run with a sacrifice fly. The Phils had few hits last night, but unlike Friday night, the hits came when they counted.

The Phils (70-50, 1st) continues their four-games series with the weaken Mets (57-66, 4th) with an afternoon game. The game will begin at 1:10 pm Eastern and will be played at Citi Field. The Phils will send to the mound Pedro Martinez (1-0, 4.50), who is coming off a no-decision against the Diamondbacks on August 18, as he pitched just three strong innings before the rains came down hard, giving up just a run on two hits, as he struck out three, in the Phils’ 5-1 win. He will be trying to show that last Tuesday’s start was just the start of a strong run by him. He will be opposed by Oliver Perez (3-3, 6.06), who is coming off a win against the Braves on August 18, as he pitched five innings, giving up four runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out  four, in the Mets’ 9-4 win. He will be trying to improve his record, while trying to pitch the Mets into at least a series tie. The Phils will be trying to win behind Pedro to set up a series win behind Cliff Lee tomorrow afternoon.

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Game 3: Making the final push to either win the Eastern Division or the Wild Card, with the Magic Number at 3 in both.

The Phillies (89-70) will play their last three games series of the regular season as they get ready to host the last place Nationals (59-99) who will be trying to act as spoiler while trying to avoid both losing 100 games and having the worst record in the majors. The first game of the three games series will be play tonight, weather permitting, at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Joe Blanton (8-12 (3-0), 4.79), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on September 20, where he pitched five innings, giving up only two earned runs on only four hits and striking out nine while walking just two, in the Phillies’ 3-2 win. Blanton has won two of his last three starts while holding his own in his other start which the Phillies won. In his two previous starts against Washington, he has two no-decisions, while the Phillies’ record is 1-1 in those starts, as he would go a combine total of nine innings, giving up eight earned runs on fifteen hits. He will be trying for his second straight win and pitching a little better against the Nats, while trying to help the Phillies get a little bit closer to winning the pennant. The Nationals will counter with Collin Balester (3-6, 4.83), who is coming off a no-decision against the Padres on September 19, where he went five innings, giving up five earned runs on nine hits, in the Nationals’ 11-6 lost. In his previous two starts against the Phillies, he is 0-2, going a combined total of twelve innings, giving up five earned runs on thirteen hits. He will be trying to improve his season record and hoping to help spoil the Phillies’ run towards the playoffs.

The Phillies’ offense has gone calm in its last two games, while the team overall has committed several base running and fielding blunders that would help them lost their last series with the Braves. Charlie Manuel obviously did not like what he saw as he has after Wednesday night’s game ordered a team meeting for today, which is to start at 3:15 pm, just over an hour from now. Hopefully he will adress the problems that he had saw in those two games and get these guys to thinking that they need to start acting like they did when they won 10 of 11 games, and thereby take care of business with the Nationals if they want to get into the playoffs. The best advice he could give the batters is to act patiently while going against Nationals pitching, especially since they won’t have to worry about batting against Phillies’ killer Tim Redding.

The Phillies are presently leading the Mets in the Easten Division by a game as they defeated the Cubs. In the Wild Card chase, the Mets and Brewers are tied for the lead, both a game behind the Phillies, as the Brewers defeated the Pirates. As the Phillies plan to play the Nationals, the Mets will be facing the Marlins for three, the last games to be played in Shea Stadium, while the Brewers will be playing the Cubs for three in Miller Park. Both the Phillies-Nationals and Mets-Marlins series are threaten by the weather as rain is expected to covered both cities both today and most of tomorrow. This is going to be one very interesting weekend as three teams fight it out for the last two playoff spots in the National League, the Eastern Division flag and the Wild Card. The Phillies are in the driver seat leading in both, but they have a tendency to make things more interesting than they should. Three teams, two spots. Which one will be the odd man out? I don’t know, but I’m praying like crazy it won’t be our Phils. GO PHILLIES!!!!!!

Ugh, Kyle Kendrick is once again unable to get through the fourth inning as the Phillies lose to the presently hot Nats, 7-4. Will someone PLEASE past me the TUMS?

Kyle Kendrick once again can not get past the fourth inning as he would give up four runs in that inning to a presently red-hot Nationals squad as the Phillies lose once more to Tim Redding, 7-4. The Phillies’ batters, who acted a bit more patiently at the plate than they normally would with Redding, would start the game off by putting two men on base (Jimmy Rollins (Walk) and Chase Utley (Hit by the Pitch)) with one man out in the first inning, before the pair would both move up a base on a Redding’s throwing error, as he tried to pick off Rollins at second. Sadly, that would be as far as they would get as Redding would get out of the inning by striking out Ryan Howard and then getting Jayson Werth to fly out. The same can not be said of Kyle Kendrick, as, with runners on second and third and one out, he would give up a two-run single to Lastings Milledge, scoring Cristian Guzman, who was safe at first on a force out, and Ryan Zimmerman, who has walked, and have both moved up a base on a Kendrick’s wild pitch, to make it 2-0 Nationals. As the Phillies’ batters continue to be patient, thus raising Redding’s pitch count, but be unable to get a hit off of him, Kendrick would continue to have control problems, until finally, in the bottom of the third, he would throw two piches to the inside of Zimmerman, the first Nats’ batter of the inning, which would both almost hit him, especially with the second one, as it would almost hit him in the head. This would cause the home plate umpire to give him a warning that the next man he would throw out would lead to an ejection. That would later hurt Kendrick as he would now no longer throw to the inside of right handed batters. Kendrick would then get hurt in the fourth. He would start the inning off by giving up singles to both Jesus Flores and Emilio Bonifacio, giving the Nationals runners on first and second. Redding would then attempt to bunt the pair over, but Kendrick would throw out Flores at third for the inning’s first out, as Greg Dobbs would beat him to the bag, while Bonifacio would be safe at second as Redding would be safe at first on the force out. Kendrick would then pick off Bonifacio, throwing to third base where he is tagged out by Dobbs for the second out of the inning. Now seeing a chance to get out of the inning, Kendrick would instead get bombed by the next three batters. First, Willie Harris would hit a long, high, fly ball to right that new Phil Matt Stairs would lose sight of for a while so that when the ball finally hit off of the wall, it would bounce over his head, allowing Harris to reach third with a triple as Redding scored to give the Nationals a 3-0 lead. Guzman would then follow with a double, knocking in Harris, to make it 4-0 Nats. Zimmerman would come up next and hit a two-run home run, his tenth home run of the year, scoring Guzman, to make it 6-0 Nationals. The Phillies would finally get to Redding in the sixth, as, with a runner on third and two outs, Howard would hit a RBI double, scoring Shane Victorino, who has hit an infield single, the Phillies’ first hit of the game, would steal second and then go to third on Nationals’ catcher’s Flores’ throwing error, to make it 6-1 Nationals. After walking Werth to put two men on base, Redding would be taken out of the game and replaced by Charlie Manning. Manning would proceed to walk pinch hitter Pedro Feliz to load the bases. Manning is then taken out of the game and is replaced by Marco Estrada. Estrada would then walk pinch hitter Pat Burrell, scoring Howard, to make the score 6-2 Nats. Chris Coste would then get hit by the pitch, forcing in Feliz, to make it 6-3 Nats. Estrada would finally get out of the inning as pinch hitter Carlos Ruiz would ground out, third to first. The Nats would get one of the runs back in the seventh, as, with a runner on second and two men outs, Flores would hit a RBI double, scoring Elijah Dukes, would has earlier reached base with an infield single and would go to second on Rollins’ throwing error, to make it 7-3 Nationals. Then in the ninth, with two men out, Rollins would hit a solo home run, his tenth home run of the year, to make it 7-4 Nats. But, that would be it as Victorino would follow with a grounder to the first baseman for the game’s final out.

Kyle Kendrick would take the lost as he would once more be unable to pitch past the fourth inning, as he goes four innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits and three walks. His record is now 11-8 with a 5.06 ERA. J.A. Happ would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit while striking out two. Clay Condrey would pitch an inning, giving up an unearned run on two hits, while also striking out two. Rudy Seanez would also pitch an inning, giving up no runs on one hit. Tim Redding would get the win, as he would go five and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on two hits. His record is now 10-8 with an ERA of 4.55. Charlie Manning would face only one batter, walking him. Marco Estrada would pitch a third of an inning, walking a batter. Saul Rivera would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up a hit. Steven Shell would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Jesus Colome would pitch an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit while striking out two hitters.

And once again, Kyle Kendrick’s recent fears of getting hit by the opposing batters has done him in, as he once again doesn’t challenge the hitters. It would appear that whatever advice that he has gotten from Greg Maddux several days back has been quickly forgotten. Maybe having Kendrick miss a start and having Rich Dubee and Jamie Moyer both talk to him in the meantime might be in order if he is going to help the team recapture the pennant. Otherwise, the Phillies are in trouble.

The Phillies (75-63) will continue their three games series with the Nationals (53-85) tomorrow night. The game will be played at Nationals Park and will begin at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (11-8, 3.13), who is coming off a no-decision against the Cubs on August 28 as he would pitch seven innings, giving up only one earned run on five hits while striking out six, in the Phillies’ 6-4 lost. Lifetime against the Nats, he is 4-3 with a 2.25 ERA in eleven starts. He will be trying for his third straight win and his fourth straight quality start while trying to stop the Nats’ present winning streak at seven. The Nationals’ starter will be John Lannan (8-12, 3.92), who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on August 28, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits, in the Nationals’ 11-2 win. He will be trying to improve his record while continuing the Nationals’ winning streak.

With the lost, the Phillies now trail the Mets by two games as they came from behind to defeat the Brewers. The Phllies are ahead of the Marlins by five games as they defeated the Braves. The Phillies will be trying to recover from this afternoon’s lost and try to stop the Nationals’ attempt to be a spolier.

The bullpen is unable to hold the lead as the Phillies lose to the Nationals, 4-3.

Ryan Madison blows a save opportunity in the eight inning as he runs into some buzzard luck as the Phillies are denied a sweep of the Nationals, losing 4-3. The first five innings of the game would involve a pitchers’ duel between veteran Jamie Moyer and the Nationals’ starter Tim Redding. Moyer would only give up a single and two walks in the first five innings, while Redding would give up just a single and a walk, while at one point getting out twelve Phils in a row. The Nationals would finally break the scoreless tie in the sixth, when, with two men on, and one out, Lastings Milledge would hit a grounder to third. Pedro Feliz, who was reactived last night, would throw to second base, forcing out Cristian Guzman, who has gotten on base with a single, for the innings’ second out, but Guzman’s take out slide would cause Chase Utley to throw widely of first for a throwing error, an error that Ryan Howard could have prevented by getting off the bag to block the ball, which would allow Anderson Hernandez, who has earlier singled and has moved to second on Guzman’s single, to score, giving the Nats a 1-0 lead, as Milledge would be safe on the error, moving up to second on the errant throw. Moyer would end the inning by getting Ronnie Belliard to ground out, short to first. The Phillies would tie it in their half of the inning, when, with a runner on second and two out Chase Utley would single in Jayson Werth, who has earlier doubled. The Nats would retake the lead in the seventh, when, with runners on second and third, and two outs, Moyer would give up a RBI single to Hernandez off of Jimmy Rollins’ glove, scoring Austin Kearns, who has earlier walked and has gone to third on Willie Harris’ single, to give the Nats a 2-1 lead. That would be it for Moyer, as he would be taken out for Chad Durbin, while being given a standing ovation by the fans for his effort. Durbin would quickly end the inning by geting Guzman to ground out to first base. The Phillies would then strike back in their half of the inning, as, with one out, Shane Victorino would get an infield single and then go to third on Ryan Zimmerman’s two-base throwing error. Victorino would then score on pitch hitter Greg Dobbs’ ground out on the drawn in infied, second to first, to tie the score at two. The Phillies would then take the lead on Carlos Ruiz’s solo home run, his third home run of the year, to give the Phillies a 3-2 lead. The lead would then vanish in the eighth inning, as Ryan Madson would run into some buzzard luck while on the mound. It would start when Zimmerman hit a ground ball to third, which would hit the third base bag and then bounce high into the air, before it finally came down to be caught by Feliz, who by then would have no play at first as Zimmerman would get an infield single. The next batter, Milledge, would then pop a fly ball into right field that would fall in for a hit, putting runners on first and second with no body out. After Belliard bunts the runners over to second and third for the inning’s first out, Jesus Flores would get an infield single off of Utley’s glove, tying the game at three all, and putting runners on the corners. Kearns would then hit a hard ball up the middle for a single, scoring Milledge, giving the Nationals a 4-3 lead, and moving Flores to second. Madson is then replaced with J.C. Romero. Romero would proceed to end the inning by striking out Harris and pinch hitter Wil Nieves. The Phillies would threaten to tie the game in both the eighth and the ninth, but would be unable to get a key hit as Nats’ closer Joel Hanrahan would come in to pitch two innings of shut out ball, recording his fourth save of the year and ending the Nats’ twelve games losing streak.

Jamie Moyer would get a no-decision as he pitched six and two-thirds innings, giving up two runs, only one of which was earned, on five hits. Chad Durbin would pitch a third of an inning, getting out the only man he would face. Ryan Madson would get the lost as he blew his second save, going a third of an inning, giving up two earned runs on four hits, only one of which was actually a clean hit ball. His record is now 3-2 with an ERA of 3.38. J.C. Romero would go two-thirds of an inning, striking out both man that he would face. Clay Condrey pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk. Tim Redding would also get a no-decision, as he pitched six innings, giving up only one earned run on three hits. Saul Rivera would get the win while also receiving his fifth blown save of the year, as he pitches an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Joel Hanrahan would record his fourth save as he pitched two innings of shut out ball, giving up two hits and a walk while striking out one as he kept the Phillies from being able to tie the game.

The Phillies’ bullpen would be as much of a culprit in last night’s lost as was the Phillies’ offense, which did not do anything until the bottom of the sixth inning, and would once again be unable to get the key hit in the eighth and ninth innings. But in Madson’s defense, he got hit by what I tend to call buzzard luck. What I mean by that is that things happen that at any other time would not happen, and seems to happen to the Phillies once too many times. The ground ball that would hit the third base bag and go up into the air for an infield hit, the pop up that would drop in between Chase Utley and Jayson Werth before either of them could reach the ball and the infield single off of Utley’s glove that would allow the tying run to score in the eighth, along with the single off of Rollins’ glove in the previous seventh inning, are all examples of buzzard luck. It drives me nuts when that happens, since I know that I have no one to blame for those situations other than dame luck, and even then, you can’t blame her when the situation is just plain goofy. So, while Madson blew the save and got the loss, it was mainly because he got hit with buzzard luck.

The Phillies (68-59) will start a four games series tonight with the Dodgers (65-62, 2nd National League West). The first game of the series will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Kyle Kendrick (10-7, 5.01), who is coming off his second straight bad start against the Padres on August 16, where he is only able to go three and two-thirds innings, giving up six earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 8-3 lost. His only start against the Dodgers this year, on August 11, would be an equally rough start, as he would go only three and a third innings, giving up seven earned runs on nine hits, in the Phillies’ 8-6 lost. He will be looking to rebound from those two loses, trying to regain his agressiveness and trying to get his eleventh win of the season. His opponent, returning like a horror film nightmare, is Phillies’ killer Greg Maddux (6-9, 3.99), who has just been acquired by the Dodgers to take the place of injured starter Brad Penny. His last start was against the Phillies for the Padres on August 15, where he would pitch seven innings, giving up only an earned run on five hits, in the Padres’ 1-0 lost. This would be his first start as a Dodgers, but he would have faced the Phillies in two starts for the Padres, going 0-2 as he would pitch thirteen and a third innings, giving up five earned runs on thirteen hits. He will be trying for his first win this year against the Philles while trying to make it five straight wins against the Phillies for the Dodgers.

The Phillies are now trailing the Mets by two and a half games, thanks to last night’s lost, while the Mets prepare for a four games series with the Astros in New York. The Phillies are ahead of the Marlins by three and a half games, as the fish prepare for a three games series with the D-backs in Phoenix. The Phillies hope to regain some ground in the East while trying to get even with the Dodgers for last week’s sweep.

Preparing for a sweep of the Nationals.

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 begin at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be veteran pitcher 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. Moyer would pitch 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 pick up 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 of the year, 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 hard luck 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, in the Nationals’ 8-5 lost. 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 are still waiting for the offense to wake up and get hot to go along with their much more solid looking starting pitching and their stellar bullpen. Although it got more hits in last night’s game than it did during most of the road trip to the West Coast, and the hits were spread around between both the top and bottom part of the line-up, the fact remains that the bats haven’t busted a game wide open in quite a while. Meanwhile, the starting pitching is coming along, as Brett Myers has rediscovered his grove, Jamie Moyer continue to confound hitters and Cole Hamels, in spite of two bad outings in July, remains the team’s ace, eating up the innings while striking out batters. Once Kyle Kendrick has decided to stop being timid and make hitters hit ground balls again and Joe Blanton goes back to eating up innings, the rotation will hopefully become one of the best in the league, something that is going to be needed in what is presently a three teams pennant race in the East, which could end up being a two teams race if the Marlins continue to go southward.

The Phillies enter tonight’s game still a game and a half behind the Mets, who are looking to sweep the fading Braves. They are ahead of the Marlins by three and a half games, although the Marlins are presently tied with the Giants in an afternoon game on the coast. The Phillies will be looking to either stay close or get closer to the Mets after tonight’s game, while preparing to get even with the Dodgers for last week’s fiasco in LA.

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.

Jamie Moyer records his 240th career win, leads Phillies back into first place.

Jamie Moyer records his tenth win of the year and the 240th victory in his long career, while leading the Phillies back into first place over the Mets as the Phillies defeat the woeful Nationals, 8-5. The Phillies would finally score some runs off of their nemesis Tim Redding as Pat Burrell would hit a two-run single, knocking in both Shane Victorino and Chase Utley, who have both singled earlier, to give the Phillies a quick 2-0 lead. In the Nationals’ half of the first, they would take the lead. Willie Harris would score the Nats’ first run as he hit Moyer’s first pitch out of the park for his eighth home run of the year, to cut the Phillies’ lead to 2-1. Three batters later, wirh a runner on second, and with one out, Jesus Flores would hit a two-run home run, his seventh home run of the year, scoring Austin Kearns, who has doubled earlier, to give the Nationals a 3-2 lead. The next three innings would see a pitchers’ duel between the veteran and the youngster, that would keep the score at 3-2 until the top of the fifth when the Phillies would get to Redding again. Carlos Ruiz would start the inning off with a single. Ruiz would then go to second on a walk to Moyer, as Redding would be unable to throw a strike as Moyer has originally gone up to the plate to put down a sacrifice bunt. Jimmy Rollins would follow with a double, scoring Ruiz to tie the game at three all, while sending Moyer over to third. The Phils would then retake the lead as Victorino would hit a two-run RBI single, scoring both Moyer and Rollins to make it 5-3 Phillies. Utley would then end the scoring as he would hit a two-run shot, for his twenty-seventh home run of the year, to make it 7-3 Phillies. After the home run, Redding would be taken out of the ballgame. The Phillies would add one more run in the seventh, as Victorino would hit a solo shot for his ninth home run of the year, to make it an 8-3 Phillies’ lead. In the bottom of the seventh, with runners on second and third and one man out, Lastings Milledge, would hit a RBI ground out, short to first, for the second out of the inning, scoring Pete Orr, who has gotten on base earlier via a force out, to make it an 8-4 Phillies’ lead. Roy Zimmerman would then follow with a RBI ground rule double that was misplayed by Jayson Werth, who would fall down when trying to make the play, scoring Harris, who has earlier doubled, to give the Phillies an 8-5 lead. That would be how the game would end as Brad Lidge would come into his fifth straight game (in six days) and records his twenty-sixth save of the years in as many tries.

Jamie Moyer would get the win, as he pitches another quality start, as he goes six inning, giving up only three earned runs, all in the first inning, on six hits. His record is now 10-6 with an ERA of  3.79. Ryan Madson would pitch an inning, giving up two earned runs on three hits. Chad Durbin would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, recording his twenty-sixth straight save, as he pitched a scoreless inning, while giving up just one hit. Tim Redding would take the lost as he would go only four innings plus five batters as he would get hammered for seven earned runs on ten hits. His record is now 7-6 with a 4.34 ERA. Steven Shell would pitch three innings, giving up an earned run on one hit. Luis Ayala would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up one hit. Jesus Colome would also pitch a scoreless inning, giving up no hits.

The Phillies’ offense would finally unload on Tim Redding, knocking in seven runs on ten hits, with only two of them being for extra-bases, a double and a home run, before they finally knocked him out of the box in the fifth. For the fourth time in as many games, the Phils would score five or more runs in an inning. It would seem that the offense is finally back, and if it is, I feel sorry for the rest of the league. Now, if they would just become more consistent with their runs production. Meanwhile, with the win, Jamie Moyer become the Phillies’ first ten games winner for 2008. He has also won his 240th career victory, while needing just ten more wins to reach 250. He has also pitched another quality start, giving up no runs for five innings after giving up three runs on a pair of home runs in the first, being helped by a couple of double play balls.

The once more first place Phillies (58-49) will conclude their three games series with the woeful Nationals (38-69) later tonight. The game will be played in Nationals Park and will start at 7:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Kyle Kendrick (8-5, 4.70), who would pitch a quality start in a game that would end up being a lost against the Braves on July 25, as he would go six innings, giving up only an earned run on seven hits, in the Phillies’ 8-2 lost. He will be trying for his ninth win while trying to increase the Phillies’ lead in the East. The Nationals’ starter will be John Lannan (6-10, 3.33), who is coming off a lost to the Dodgers on July 25, going seven innings as he gives up three earned runs on six hits, in the Nationals’ 3-2 lost. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to stop the Nationals’ present losing streak.

The Phillies now lead the Mets by a half game and the Marlins by one and a half games as the Mets lost their game to the Marlins. The Braves now trails the Phils by nine games as they’d lose again to the Cardinals, their fifth lost in a row. As the Phillies try for their fifth straight win, the Mets will take the day off, the Marlins will face the Rockies for the first of four games in Miami and the Braves will end their four game series with the redbirds. The Phillies will be going for their fifth straight victory and their first sweep of the second half, while also trying to increase the lead on the Mets.