May 18 2007


Team W-L R R/G NL Rank R OPS (NL Rank) SB CS
TOR 18-22 176 4.40 NA 744 15 5
PHI 20-21 208 5.07 2 785 (2) 35 7


Team W-L RA RA/G NL Rank RA Starter ERA Pen ERA
TOR 18-22 190 4.75 NA 4.86 3.70
PHI 20-21 193 4.70 13 4.49 (12) 4.28 (13)

Jon Lieber didn't need much help tonight but he got some from the umps.  The Phils enjoyed two big calls -- one came in the fifth on a 3-2 pitch to Lieber that opened the floodgates to a big inning.  The other ended the game on a long stretch by Helms at first with the go-ahead run on base.

The Phillies beat the Toronto Blue Jays tonight, winning 5-3 to improve to 21-21 on the year.  They got a win on a night when they got three hits, all singles, and all of which came in a five-run fifth inning.  The Phils have won four of five and five of seven. 

Jon Lieber got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing three runs on six hits.  Four of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and two home runs.  He struck out seven and didn't walk a batter.

In the first he retired the first two hitters before Vernon Wells reached on an infield single.  Lieber got Troy Glaus to fly to right on a ball Victorino caught in foul territory.

Lieber threw a 1-2-3 second and a 1-2-3 third. 

Lyle Overbay led off the fourth with a double to right.  Lieber struck out Wells and Glaus and got Aaron Hill to ground to third to end the frame.

With one out in the fifth, Royce Clayton smashed a ball to left center that barely stayed in the yard.  Double for Clayton.  Lieber struck out Sal Fasano and got Dustin McGowan on a soft ground ball to second. 

Lieber threw a 1-2-3 sixth. 

Glaus started the seventh with a single to center and Aaron Hill followed with a two-run homer to left that cut the Phillies' lead to 5-2.  Lieber got the next three to end the inning.

With Lieber still in the game, Matt Stairs led off, pinch-hitting for the pitcher Brian Tallet, and homered to right.  5-3.  With the righty Rios at the plate, Manuel called on Alfonseca and Alfonseca got Rios to fly to right for the first out.  Lyle Overbay followed with a double to right, but Alfonseca got Wells on a ground ball to short and struck out Glaus for the third out.

Brett Myers started the ninth with the Phils up 5-3, pitching for the fourth time in five days.  He struck out Hill for the first out, but Lind followed and doubled down the line in left.  Frank Thomas pinch-hit for Clayton as the tying run and drew a walk.  With the tying run on base, Jason Phillips pinch-hit for Fasano and struck out for the second out of the inning.  Myers got behind Stairs 3-1 before the count went full and Myers walked him on a pitch way up and away.  It brought up Rios with two down and the bases loaded.  Myers got ahead 0-2 before Rios chopped a ball to third.  Everyone was playing deep, but Nunez charged and threw to Helms at first who stretched and held the bag long enough to get the call before face-planting with the game over.  Looked safe to me but I'll take it.  Two runs probably would have scored on the slow-developing play if Rios had been called safe cause Helms would have had to have gotten to his feet before he would have been able to throw home.  Good play by Nunez and good stretch by Helms.

The Phillies' lineup against righty Dustin McGowan went (1) Rowand (2) Victorino (3) Rollins (4) Utley (5) Burrell (6) Dobbs (7) Helms (8) Ruiz.  The red-hot Nunez on the bench as Helms plays third and Dobbs first.  Helms hits seventh and Dobbs sixth between the righties Burrell and Helms.  The Phillies apparently think that Helms is a better defensive third baseman than Dobbs, which may explain why we've seen so little of him at third.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the first.  They went 1-2-3 again in the second, with Burrell and Dobbs both going down swinging for the last two outs.

They went 1-2-3 again in the third as Ruiz and Lieber struck out.

With one out in the fourth, Victorino walked, giving the Phils their first base runner.  With Rollins at the plate, Victorino stole second on a pitch in the dirt.  Fasano didn't have a chance and Victorino had his 16th swipe of the year.  Rollins popped to short and Utley grounded to short to end the inning.

The Phillies loaded the bases with nobody out in the fifth on a walk by Burrell, a single by Dobbs and a walk by Helms.  Ruiz struck out swinging for the first out.  Lieber got up 3-0 before looking at a close 3-2 pitch that was called a ball.  Burrell scored to put the Phils up 1-0.  Rowand singled into left past a diving Clayton and everybody moved up a base.  2-0 Phils with the bases still loaded for Victorino.  Victorino smoked a ball into right for a single and everyone moved up another base.  3-0 as Helms scored.  The first pitch to Rollins was a breaking ball in the dirt and Fasano couldn't handle it.  Lieber scored on the wild pitch.  4-0 with runners at second and third and one out.  Rollins hit it well to center where Wells handled it for the second out as Rowand scored easily to put the Phils up 5-0.  That was it for McGowan.  Lefty Brian Tallet came in to pitch to Utley.  Utley walked and Tallet stayed in to pitch to the righty Burrell and struck him out to end the inning.  Bad at-bat for Ruiz with the bases loaded and nobody out.  Good at-bat by Lieber and the Phils get the call on a close 3-2 pitch to get a big inning started.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the sixth and again in the seventh. 

Rollins walked to start the eighth with the Phils up 5-3.  Utley hit into a double-play back to the pitcher before Burrell drew a two-out walk.  Bourn ran for Burrell at first but Dobbs went down swinging to end the inning.

Three hits and seven walks for the Phillies on the night.

Rowand was 1-for-4 with an RBI.

Victorino 1-for-3 with walk and an RBI.

Rollins 0-for-2 with a walk and an RBI.

Utley was 0-for-3 with a walk.

Burrell was 0-for-2 with two walks and two strikeouts.

Dobbs was 1-for-4 with two strikeouts.

Helms was 0-for-2 with a walk.

Ruiz was 0-for-3 and struck out twice.

Jamie Moyer (4-2, 3.48) faces righty Shaun Marcum (1-2, 4.43) tomorrow night.  Eight starts on the year for Moyer.  He's only been charged with more than three earned runs once, his last time out on Monday against Milwaukee.  Opponents are hitting just .234 against him, but he's been hurt by the home run in his last two starts.  After allowing just one home run in his first six starts he's given up four his last two times out.  Marcum has appeared in 14 games this year, 13 of which have come in relief.  His only start came on Sunday and he went six innings in which he held the Devil Dogs hitless and struck out seven.  Marcum was on a 70-pitch limit, which is why he was pulled with a no-no after throwing just 78 pitches against Tampa Bay.  The Blue Jays lost that game 2-1.  On the season, Marcum has allowed four home runs in just 22 1/3 innings.  He's struck out 29.  Righties have hit .160 against him, lefties .265.  On the year he has a 0.00 ERA in 8 1/3 innings against Tampa Bay and a 7.07 ERA in his 14 innings against everyone else.

May 18 2007

The Phils did almost everything right in their four-game set with the high-flying Brewers.  They got clutch hits, big innings and good pitching.  What they couldn't do yesterday was get Gabe Gross out.  The lefty hit two bombs off of Freddy Garcia and it helped Milwaukee come out of Philly with a win and dropped the Phils back below .500.

The Phillies fell to the Brewers yesterday afternoon, losing 3-2 to drop to 20-21 on the year.  The Phils take three of four in the set.

Freddy Garcia got the start for the Phillies and went 5 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits and two walks.  Both of the runs he allowed came on solo home runs by the lefty Gross.  He also allowed a double to Tony Graffanino -- the other four hits he gave up were singles.  He struck out five and left the game with the bases loaded in the sixth, but Geary came in and bailed him out by getting a ground ball to third.

In the first he set the Brewers down 1-2-3.

He threw a 1-2-3 second, getting a nice play from Rollins to snare a line drive from Johnny Estrada for the second out of the frame.

Gross led off the third with the Phils leading 1-0 and hit the first pitch out to left to tie the game at 1-1.  Garcia got the next three in order.

Craig Counsell led off the fourth with a bloop single into left.  JJ Hardy hit a line drive that was caught by Utley.  He threw to first to try to double-up Counsell.  The throw beat Counsell back to the bag so Helms' foot may have strayed.  Safe.  Prince Fielder moved Counsell to second with a single, but Estrada grounded to Utley who tagged Fielder and threw to first for the double-play to set down the Brewers.

Garcia struck out Geoff Jenkins to start the fifth, but Gross was next and followed with another home run to just about the same spot in left.  2-1 Milwaukee.  Tony Graffanino followed Gross and doubled to left.  Sheets singled softly into center field, moving Graffanino to third with one down and men on the corners.  With Tony Gwynn, Jr, at the plate, Garcia got up 0-2 before Sheets moved to second on a wild 2-2 pitch.  Garcia struck out Gwynn for the second out.  Big strikeout for Garcia, who had to go after Counsell with two down and the crazy-hot Hardy on deck.  Garcia got him on a ball well hit to Victorino in right for the third out.

Hardy started the sixth and reached on an infield single.  Fielder was next and walked, putting runners on first and second with nobody out for Estrada.  Garcia struck out Estrada on a pitch in the dirt.  With two lefties, Jenkins and Gross, due to hit next and Castro warming in the pen, Manuel left Garcia in to pitch to Jenkins.  Jenkins hit it to right, but Victorino handled it for the second out.  Hardy tagged and went to third.  With two down and men on first and third, Garcia stayed in the game to pitch to the lefty who was 2-for-2 on the day with two home runs against him.  He had thrown 109 pitches on the day before the at-bat started and the Phillies had a lefty in the pen who was, to say the very, very least, well-rested (Castro had appeared in one game since May 5).  Garcia walked Gross to load the bases with two down.  With the righty Graffanino up, Manuel called on Geary.  Geary got Graffanino on a ground ball to short to set the Brewers down.

Geary kept Milwaukee off the board in the seventh, holding them to an bunt single by Gwynn.

Castro started the eighth with the Phils down 2-1 and walked Fielder to start the inning.  Estrada brought Fielder home with a double to center to extend the lead to 3-1.  Castro struck out the lefty Jenkins to record his first out in three appearances this month.  Righty Kevin Mench pinch-hit for the lefty Gross and Clay Condrey entered the game.  Condrey got Mench on a ground out, walked Graffanino intentionally and struck out Sheets to end the frame.

Castro awful yet again as his ERA hit 19.29.  Condrey good yet again.  His ERA is 1.42 in six appearances.

Rosario pitched the ninth with the Phils down 3-2.  He gave up a one-out walk to Counsell but Hardy lined back to the pitcher into a double-play to set the Brewers down.  

The Phillies lineup against righty Ben Sheets went (1) Rowand (2) Victorino (3) Rollins (4) Utley (5) Burrell (6) Helms (7) Nunez (8) Barajas.  Barajas gets his first start since Friday.  Apparently the answer to what it would take to get Helms back in the lineup is not a lefty but Dobbs going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. 

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the first.

In the second, Utley led off the inning and popped to short.  Burrell followed with a home run to left-center that put the Phils up 1-0.  Fifth of the year for Burrell, four of which have come in the last seven days.  Helms and Nunez went down to end the inning.

Barajas led off the third with a walk.  Garcia followed and tried to bunt him to second but failed, striking out as he bunted foul.  Rowand was next and he hit into an inning-ending double-play, so the inability to move Barajas up costs the Phils a chance for Victorino to drive in a run.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the fourth.

Nunez singled to left with two outs in the fifth but Barajas followed and popped out to Estrada in foul territory.  Nunez is apparently possessed by the spirit of someone no longer with us who was a significantly better hitter.

Ruiz, who entered the game in the top of the inning with Geary, led off the sixth with a single.  And they say Manuel doesn't know how to execute a double-switch.  Rowand bunted Ruiz to second.  Of course he did.  Victorino struck out for the second out and Rollins flew to center to end the inning with the Phils down 2-1.

In the seventh, Utley led off and reached on yet another error by Fielder at first, but the next three went down behind him on two strikeouts and a ground ball to third.

With two outs in the eighth, Rowand doubled and came around to score on a single by Victorino, cutting the Brewers' lead to 3-2.  Victorino stole second, but Rollins struck out the end the inning.

With one out in the ninth Burrell hit a ball to left that was just inches from going out and tying the game.  Double.  Bourn ran for him but Helms grounded to third and whatever spirit Nunez is possessed by grounded to first to end the game.

Sheets pretty much shut down the Phils over his 7 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on five hits while striking out eight.  The Phils had six hits, three singles, two doubles and a homer, and a walk on the day

Rowand was 1-for-3 with a double yesterday and 4-for-14 with a double and a home run in the series.  340/417/527 on the year.

Victorino was 1-for-4 with his 15th stolen base on the year.  4-for-16 with two doubles in the series.  276/358/375.

Rollins 0-for-4.  4-for-14 with a double in the series.  250/278/382 in May, 279/333/525 on the year.

Utley was 0-for-4 and struck out twice.  5-for-15 with five singles in the series.  Two walks in his last 66 at-bats.  304/392/553.

Burrell was 2-for-4 with a double and a home run.  4-for-14 with a double and two home runs in the series.  256/413/446.  In 60 at-bats at home he's slugging .650.  In 61 road at-bats he's slugging .246.

Helms was 0-for-4 and struck out three times, so the Phils' first baseman went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in the last two games of the set after Dobbs was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts on Wednesday.  Helms was 1-for-5 with a big single in the series.  277/313/336 on the year.  Dobbs was 0-for-1 in the game and 3-for-13 with a home run in the series.  283/328/491 on the year.  Dobbs made his second appearance in the outfield in yesterday's game, playing right in the ninth after he hit for Condrey in the eighth.

Nunez was 1-for-4 in the game and 6-for-16 with a double in the series.  316/349/405 on the year.

Barajas was 0-for-1 with a walk yesterday in his only action of the series.  Ruiz was 1-for-2 yesterday and 4-for-13 with game-winning home run and a walk in the series. 

Jon Lieber (1-2, 2.83) faces righty Dustin McGowan (0-0, 7.59) tonight as the Blue Jays come to town for the first of three.  Lieber has made five starts on the year and been charged with more than two earned runs in just one of them.  He went eight innings his last time out, Sunday against the Cubs.  He pitched great in that game but Ted Lilly was just a little better.  Lieber has issued 12 walks on the season, ten of which have been to lefties.  McGowan has made two starts on the year and been hit hard in both of them.  Lefties have smoked him in his limited action this season, hitting .450 against him, while righties haven't done much at all, hitting just .182.  The 25-year-old has appeared in 31 games in his career and thrown to a 6.80 ERA in 83 1/3 innings.

Freddy Garcia was displeased to be removed from the game yesterday.  This article suggests he thinks the Phils have no confidence in him.  More outs should do it.

Ryan Howard will rehab at Lakewood starting on Wednesday of next week.  He is eligible to come off the DL on Friday, May 25.

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