The Phillies lose their third straight game to the Mets as a late inning rally would fall short as they could not overcome an early deficit, losing 10-9. The Phillies’ starter, Adam Eaton, would only be able to go two and two-thirds innings as he is roughed up by the Mets’ batters, who were coming off a high left over from their win on Sunday. The damage would begin in the very first inning, as Jose Reyes, who has gotten on base earlier with a single and have moved to third on Endy Chavez’s single, would score the first Mets’ run on a David Wright ground out, second to first, to give the Mets a 1-0 lead, while Chavez would go to second on the play. Two batters later, with Chavez on third and with two outs, a Damion Easley would score Chavez, making it 2-0 Mets. The Mets would increase their lead in the second, when, with two men on and two outs, Chavez would hit a RBI single, scoring Brian Schneider, who has gotten on base earlier during a force out, giving the Mets a 3-0 lead. A Wright double would make it 5-0, as he knocks in Reyes, who has earlier walked and Easley. The Mets would then chase Adam Eaton out of the game in the third inning. With one out, and with runners on the corners, Schneider would ground out short to first for out number two, while scoring Carlos Delgado, who has earlier doubled, to make it a 6-0 Mets’ lead. Pedro Martinez would then reach base on a Greg Dobbs’ fielding error, allowing Fernando Tatis, who has earlier singled, to score, making it 7-0 Mets. Two batters later, Chavez would single in Martinez, making it 8-0. Clay Condrey would relieve Eaton and would finally end the inning by getting Wright to fly out. The Phillies would get a run back in the fourth as Chase Utley would hit his major league leading twenty-fifth home run of the year off of Mets’ starter Martinez, a solo shot, which would make it 8-1 Mets. The Mets would then increase their lead in the sixth, as they knocked in two runs off of R.J. Swindle, who was pitching his first game after being recalled from Lehigh Valley to replace Tom Gordon in the bullpen. The first run would come in on a solo home run by Wright, his seventeenth home run of the year, to make it 9-1 Mets. Later, with the bases loaded, and two outs, Martinez would hit a RBI single, scoring Carlos Beltran, who has earlier singled, making it 10-1 Mets. But, that would be the last run that the Mets would score last night, as Shane Victorino throws out Easley at home plate, with Chris Coste supplying the tag, for the final out of the inning. From that point on, the Phillies would attempt a comeback. It would begin in the Phillies’ half of the sixth, as Pat Burrell would hit a solo home run, his twenty-second home run of the year, to make it 10-2 Mets. The Phillies would continue in the seventh, as Victorino would hit a RBI double, scoring Jimmy Rollins who has earlier singled, to cut the Mets’ lead to 10-3. Two batters later, Ryan Howard would hit his twenty-fourth home run of the year, scoring Victorino, on a ball that was originally called a ground rule double because of possible fan’s interference. But, after an agrument from Charlie Manuel, and a conversation among the umpires, the ruling was changed into a home run. This would in turn lead to an argument from Mets’ manager, Jerry Manuel, who would then be ejected from the game, as the Mets now lead the game 10-5. In the eighth, the Phillies would continue their comeback, as Geoff Jenkins would hit a two-run home run, his seventh home run of the year, scoring Jayson Werth, who has earlier singled, making it 10-7 Mets. Then in the ninth, with Billy Wagner on the mound, the Phils tried to send it into extra-innings. Victornio would start the inning off with a double, followed by a walk to Eric Bruntlett, with nobody out. After Howard strikes out and Burrell flies out to right, Pedro Feliz would hit a pinch single, scoring Victornio and sending Bruntlett to third, making it 10-8 Mets. On the play, Beltran would throw the ball away, as he tries to cut down Bruntlett at third, for an error, allowing Bruntlett to score and sending Feliz over to second base, as the Phillies now trail the Mets 10-9. But, that would be as close as the Phillies would get, as Wagner would get Werth to fly out to right to end the game, recording his twentieth save of the year.
Adam Eaton would take the lost, as he gets rocked for eight earned runs on ten hits as he is only able to go two and two thirds inning. His record is now 3-7 with a 5.20 ERA. Clay Condrey would pitch two and one third innings of scoreless ball, giving up just two hits. R.J.Swindle would pitch three innings of relief, giving up two earned runs on four hits. J.C. Romero would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit. Pedro Martinez would get the win, as he goes five and a third innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits. His record is now 3-2 with a 6.86 ERA. Tony Armas would go an inning and a third, giving up three earned runs on three hits. Aaron Heilman would also go an inning and a third, giving up two earned runs on two hits. Billy Wagner would pitch the ninth, recording his twentieth save of the season, as he gives up two earned runs on two hits.
The Phillies’ offense was once again stifled in the early going, while being put in the hole early by Adam Eaton’s bad start on the mound. But slowly it came back to life, scoring all but one of its runs in the last four innings, mostly by the long ball, as they, for the first time in a while, refused to quit, despite being buried early. It could mean the reemergence of the team that was finding ways to win games back in April and early May before the period when the team would seem to be able to score runs at will. If so, it would be coming not a moment too soon, as the Cardinals and then the Diamondbacks would be coming into town for the last two series before the All-Star break.
The Phillies (48-42) will start a three games set with the Cardinals (50-40, 2nd National League Central) at Citizens Bank Park. The first game of the series will be played tonight, starting at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be their ace, Cole Hamels (9-5, 3.22), who has won his last start against the Braves on July 3, just missing out on his third complete game shut out. He would instead go eight and two-thirds innings, giving up only an earned run on five hits in the Phillies’ 4-1 win. He has won his last two starts giving up five earned runs on eleven hits as he pitched a combined total of fifteen and two-thirds innings. He will be gunning for his tenth win of the season, while hoping to end the Phillies’ present slide. The Cardinals will counter with Joel Pineiro (2-4, 4.52), who is coming off a no-decision against the Mets on July 2, as he would go only five innings, giving up four earned runs on eleven hits in the Cardinals’ 8-7 win. Pineiro will be looking for his first victory since April 29, while the Cardinals’ hope that he will keep them in the game against a probably angry Phillies team.
The Phillies’ lead over the Marlins has been cut down to one and half games, as the fish were able to defeat the Padres. The Mets are now trailing the Phillies by two and a half games. The Braves still trail the Phillies by six games as they lost to the Dodgers. The Phillies hope that last night’s comeback attempt, although a failure, could be the launch pad for a very productive period, as the Phillies look to find somebody, or rather somebodies, upon whom to take out their present offensive frustrations out on, while trying to once again take complete control of the East before the All-Star break.
For the first time in a long while, the Phillies’ bullpen have collectively let a ballgame get away as J.C. Romero and Tom Gordon would combine to blow a save as the Phillies lose to the Mets, 9-4. The Mets would score first in the first inning, as Jose Reyes, who has earlier singled, and then reached third on Ryan Church’s single, would score on a David Wright double play ball, 6-4-3, wiping out Church at second, to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. The Met would then increase their lead in the fourth, when, with runners on first and third, and one out, Jamie Moyer would pick off first base Carlos Beltran, who has just walked. But a Ryan Howard’s throwing error towards second would allow Wright, who has earlier doubled, and has reached third on a stolen base, to score, giving the Mets a 2-0 lead, while Beltran would be safe at second. Beltran would then score on a RBI single by Damion Easley, giving the Mets a 3-0 lead. The Phillies would come back in their half of the fourth, as Howard would hit a three-run home run, his twenty-third home run of the year, scoring Shane Victornio, who has earlier been hit by the pitch, and Chase Utley, who has just walked, to even the score at three. It would remain tied until the bottom of the seventh, when pinch hitter Jayson Werth would hit a RBI single to score Eric Bruntlett, who was pinch running for Pat Burrell. who has earlier singled, to give the Phillies the lead at 4-3. But, Werth would then be thrown out at second, catcher Ramon Castro to second baseman Easley, when he tried to move up to second on the throw to home, ending the inning. The Phillies then gave it to the bullpen to try and close the door. Unfortunately, the bullpen would be unable to do so. With one out, J.C. Romero would give up singles to Easley and Carlos Delgado, which would put runners on the corners. Charlie Manuel would then quickly replace Romero with Tom Gordon. While pitching to Marlon Anderson, Gordon would uncork a wild pitch, which would score Easley, tying the game at four all, and send Delgado to second. After Anderson walks, Endy Chavez would ground out to Howard, moving the runners to second and third base with two outs. Pinch hitter Brian Schneider would then hit a pinch hit double, scoring both Delgado and Anderson, and giving the Mets a 6-4 lead. Then in the ninth, with Rudy Seanez on the mound, pinch hitter Fernando Tatis would start the inning off with a pinch hit double. After moving up to third on a Wright ground out to third, he would score on a ball hit back to Seanez, which he would be unable to field for an error, allowing Beltran to reach first safely, and giving the Mets a 7-4 lead. Easley would then follow with a single, moving Beltran to second. Delgado would then follow with a single, loading the bases. Anderson would then hit a ground ball to second, that would lead to Delgado being thrown out at second for the second out of the inning, as Beltran scores, and Easley moves up to third on the fielder’s choice, making it 8-4 Mets. Easley would then score the Mets’ final run on a RBI single by Chavez. That would be it, as Tony Armas would come in to pitch a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
Jamie Moyer would get a no-decision, as he pitches a quality start, going six and two-thirds innings, giving up only three earned runs on seven hits. Ryan Madson would pitch a third of an inning, getting out the only batter that he would face. J.C. Romero, would take the lost, going one-third of an inning, giving up two earned runs on two hits. He record is now 4-2 with an ERA of 2.43. Tom Gordon will receive a blown save, his first of the year, as he goes two-thirds of an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. Rudy Seanez would go two-thirds of an inning, giving up three earned runs on four hits. Clay Condrey would pitch a third of an inning, retiring the only man that he would face. John Maine would also get a no-decision, as he leaves the game after having pitched five and two-thirds inning, and with the count 2-2 on Ryan Howard, because of an injury to his non-pitching elbow. He has given up three earned runs on just one hit, Howard’s home run, when he was replaced by Aaron Heilman, who would then strike out Howard on one pitch, who would turn out to be the only man that he would face. Joe Smith would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. Pedro Feliciano would get the win, as he would pitch only a third of an inning, giving up no runs on one hit. His record is now 1-2 with an ERA of 2.91. Duaner Sanchez would pitch an inning of scoreless ball, giving up just one hit. Tony Armas would pitch a 1-2-3 ninth to end the game.
The Phillies’ offense was only able to get four hits tonight, even if one of them, Howard’s three-run home run, did bring in a few runs. Moyer had another quality start, but the bullpen did something that it has not done at all this year, be unable to protect a lead late in the ballgame. Unfortunately, it was bound to happen, and hopefully there will not be a repeat performance during the rest of the series.
The four games series between the two rivals will continue tomorrow afternoon from Citizens Bank Park with the third game of their series. The game will begin at 1:35 pm Eastern, The Phillies (48-40) will send to the mound Kyle Kendrick (8-3, 4.58), who is coming off a victory over the Braves on July 1, where he went six plus innings, giving up only three earned runs on seven hits, in the Phillies’ 8-3 win. He will be trying for his ninth win of the year, hoping to make it three straight wins in a row, while trying to get even with the Mets for his early season defeat at their hands. The Mets (43-44) will counter with Oliver Perez (6-5, 4.98), who is coming off a win against the Yankess on June 29, where he went seven innings, giving up just an earned run on three hits, in the Mets’ 3-1 win. He will be gunning for his seventh win of the year whle trying to get the Mets back into the pennant race.
In spite of the lost, the Phillies’ lead is still three and a half games over the Marlins as the fish have once again lost to the Rockies. The Mets now trail the Phillies by four and a half games with tonight’s win. The Braves still trail by seven games as they have lost their game to the Astros. The Phillies will be trying to regroup, so that they can do some more damage and add on to their lead in the Eastern Division.