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July 5 2007

The Phils split the last two in Houston, getting a win yesterday after a tough loss on Tuesday night.

Yesterday the Phils got seven strong innings from Cole Hamels and home runs from Helms, Burrell, Rollins and Howard.  They rolled to an 8-3 win. 

On Tuesday they appeared to have won the game in the bottom of the ninth, but the first-base umpire ruled that Carlos Lee had beaten out the double-play that should have ended the game.  The Phils loaded the bases with one out in the top of the thirteenth and pinch-hitter Jamie Moyer struck out on three pitches.  They lost on a home run on the first pitch in the bottom of the thirteenth.

The Phillies needed to lose a game on a bad call by an umpire about as much as the world needs Britney and Kevin to reunite to release a double-album of Celtic lullabies.

After losing five of their last seven the Phils are 43-42.  They travel to Colorado today and start a three-game series with the Rockies tomorrow night.  And then they are off for the All-Star break.

Cole Hamels got the start for the Phillies yesterday and went seven innings, allowing a run on eight hits.  Only one of the hits went for extra-bases, a solo home run by Eric Munson.  Hamels struck out eight and didn't walk a batter.  He threw 115 pitches, which is his second-highest pitch count for the season.

He threw a 1-2-3 first.

Carlos Lee singled to start the second.  Mark Loretta popped to first for the first out before Lee stole second.  Hamels got Morgan Ensberg on a pop to second and struck out Eric Bruntlett to end the inning.

Munson started the third with a home run to left that tied the game at 1-1.  Hamels got the next two before Hunter Pence reached on an error by Rollins, who tired to hold his throw but couldn't.  Lance Berkman flew to right to end the inning.

Hamels threw a 1-2-3 fourth.

In the fifth, Munson singled with one out.  Chris Sampson tried to bunt him to second but popped the bunt up for the second out.  Chris Burke singled Munson to second.  Pence hit a ground ball to second that Utley didn't handle for an error that loaded the bases.  Berkman popped to Coste in foul territory to end the inning.

Loretta singled with one out in the sixth, and, after Ensberg struck out, Bruntlett moved him to second with another single.  Munson was caught looking to end the inning.

Hamels gave up back-to-back singles with two outs in the seventh to Pence and Berkman, but Lee flew to right to end the inning.

Madson started the eighth with an 8-1 lead after throwing 18 pitches the night before.  There's a really bad idea for you, off day today or not.  8-1 in the eighth is really where you want to use the guys at the bottom of your pen, not your token reliable reliever who threw 1 1/3 innings yesterday.  Loretta doubled.  Ensberg flew to center.  Bruntlett singled to right and Loretta went to third.   Munson hit a sac fly to center and Loretta scored.  8-2.  Pinch-hitter Orlando Palmeiro singled to right and Bruntlett went to second.  Chris Burke struck out to end the inning.

Madson threw 30 pitches in the inning and was ineffective.  Fifth time since June 18 that Madson has thrown at least 30 pitches.  Too many -- the Phils should be careful.  He especially doesn't need to throw that many up seven runs after pitching the day before.

Sanches stared the ninth and gave up a leadoff home run to Pence.  8-3.  Berkman singled but Lee grounded into a double-play and Loretta grounded to third to end the game.

The Phillies lineup against righty Chris Sampson went (1) Rollins (2) Bourn (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Victorino (6) Burrell (7) Helms (8) Coste.  Rowand misses another start with his thumb.  Coste gets a start behind the plate, his first of the year.  Victorino hits fifth for the second straight day, which is silly with Burrell in the lineup (and Helms for that matter). 

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

Burrell singled with two outs in the second and scored on a double by Helms.  It put the Phils up 1-0.  Coste flew to right to end the frame.

1-2-3 in the third.

Utley singled to start the fourth.  After Howard struck out, Victorino walked.  Burrell hit into a double-play to set the Phillies down.

Helms started the fifth with a home run that put the Phils up 2-1.  With two outs and nobody on, Rollins homered to right.  3-1.  Bourn grounded to short for the third out.

Utley tripled to start the sixth and scored on a single by Howard.  4-1.  Victorino, Burrell and Helms went down behind Howard.

Coste singled to start the seventh and Hamels bunted him to second.  Rollins grounded to third and Bourn struck out.

Utley led off the eighth with a double and moved to third on a passed ball before Howard homered.  6-1.  Victorino struck out and Burrell homered.  7-1.  Helms and Coste both singled, putting men on first and third.  Nunez hit for Hamels and a wild pitch scored Helms and moved Coste to second.  8-1.  Nunez grounded to second with Coste going to third and Rollins flew to left.

Utley walked with one out in the ninth.  Howard struck out and Victorino walked, putting men on first and second with two down for Madson, who had entered the game in the eighth as part of a double-switch.  Dobbs hit for Madson and grounded to short.

Rollins was 1-for-5 with a home run yesterday.  4-for-17 in the series with a double and a home run  He has one walk in his last 43 at-bats.  281/324/511 on the year.

Bourn was 0-for-5 with two strikeouts yesterday.  3-for-11 with an RBI in the series.  267/353/333.

Utley was 3-for-4 today with a double and a triple.  4-for-14 with two doubles and a triple in the series.  324/403/579.

Howard 2-for-5 with a home run and three RBI.  5-for-14 with two doubles and a home run in the series.  254/383/558.

Victorino was 0-for-3 with two walks and three strikeouts.  5-for-12 with a double in the set.  276/346/422.

Burrell was 2-for-4 with a home run.  3-for-8 with two home runs in the series.  207/371/392.  Dobbs 0-for-1 yesterday and 1-for-5 in the series.

Helms was 3-for-4 with a double and a home run yesterday.  6-for-8 with three doubles and a home run in the series.   266/322/380.

Rowand was 1-for-6 in the series.  309/385/472 after going 3-for-his-last-17.  His .309 average is the lowest it's been since April 12.

Coste was 2-for-4 yesterday.  3-for-6 in the series.  429/467/643 in 14 at-bats on the season.

Ruiz was 1-for-5 with a double in the series.  274/330/403.  Barajas was 1-for-4 in the series with a double.  212/344/390.

On Tuesday, the Phillies lost to the Astros 5-4 in 13 innings.  They appeared to have won the game in the ninth inning but didn't get the call from the first base umpire. 

Adam Eaton got the start for the Phils and went six innings, allowing three runs on four hits and four walks.  All four of the hits were singles and he struck out seven.

Berkman walked with two outs in the first, but Eaton got Lee to pop to second to end the inning.

With the Phils up 1-0 in the second, the Astros loaded the bases with nobody out on singles by Loretta and Lamb and a walk to Scott.  Eaton walked Ausumus, forcing in a run to tie the game at 1-1.  Roy Oswalt hit a double-play ball to second.  The Phils got two outs but another run scored, putting Houston up 2-1 with two down and Scott on third.  Biggio singled to left.  3-1.  Eaton struck out Pence to end the inning.

Berkman walked to start the third, but Eaton struck out the next two and got Lamb on a fly ball to center. 

He struck out two more in a 1-2-3 fourth.

Pence singled with one out in the fifth, but Eaton got the next two.

Eaton hit Loretta to start the sixth, but got the next three.

Madson started the seventh with a 4-3 lead.  Ensberg led off with a pinch-hit single and Biggio bunted him to second.  Pence walked, putting men on first and second with one out, but Madson struck out Berkman for the second out.  Lee singled into right and Victorino threw Ensberg out at home to end the inning.  One millionth outfield assist on the year for Victorino, so at least Ensberg gets his name in the paper and dinner for two at the Olive Garden (really just the tenth outfield assist on the season for Victorino, it just feels like a million).  Nice job by Madson to strike out Berkman for the second out.

Madson got the first out in the eighth and Romero came in to face the lefty Lamb.  Lamb walked and moved to second on a wild pitch.  Romero struck out Scott for the second out before Lamb moved to third on another wild pitch.  Ausmus grounded to second for the third out.

Alfonseca started the ninth with a 4-3 lead.  Biggio and Pence singled back-to-back with one out, putting runners on first and third.  Berkman walked to load the bases.  Lee was next and he hit a ground ball to short.  Rollins tossed to Utley, who was a little slow with the relay to first.  Close play.  Called safe.  Replays showed that Lee was clearly out and the game should have been over.  It wasn't.  4-4.  Loretta grounded to third to end the inning.

Zagurski pitched the tenth.  He got the first two before allowing a single to Ausmus and walking Bruntlett and Biggio to load the bases.  He struck out Pence to end the inning.

Durbin came in to pitch the eleventh.  He walked Lee with one out and Biggio followed with a pinch-hit single that moved Lee to second.  Durbin got Lamb and Scott on fly balls to end the inning.

Durbin threw a 1-2-3 twelfth. 

Mesa started the thirteenth and threw one pitch to Pence.  Home run to left.

Pence's home run was the only extra-base hit of the game for the Astros.

The Phillies' lineup against righty Roy Oswalt went (1) Rollins (2) Bourn (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Victorino (6) Dobbs (7) Helms (8) Barajas.  Bourn in center, Victorino in right and hitting fifth.  Dobbs plays left with Burrell on the bench again.   Rowand was out of the lineup with a bruised right thumb.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the first. 

Victorino doubled with one out in the second.  Dobbs grounded to third for the second out, but Helms brought Victorino in from second with a double of his own.  1-0 Phils.  Barajas flew to right for the third out.

With one out in the third, singles by Rollins and Bourn put men on first and second for Utley.  Utley flew to left for the second out, but Howard followed with a two-run double that tied the game at 3-3.  Victorino grounded back to the pitcher to set the Phils down.

Dobbs and Helms singled to start the fourth, but with nobody out and men on first and second Barajas hit into a double-play.  With Dobbs on third, Eaton struck out for the third out.

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

Helms doubled to start the seventh.  Barajas bunted and Helms was thrown out at third.  Coste pinch-hit for Eaton and singled Barajas to second.  Rollins struck out for the second out, but Bourn was next and he hit the ball over Scott's head in right.  It bounced once and over the fence, which probably cost the Phils a run.  Barajas scored to put the Phils up 4-3, but Coste only went to third and was left stranded when Utley grounded to first to end the frame.

With one out in the eighth, Victorino singled and stole second.  Rowand pinch-hit for Dobbs against the lefty Trever Miller, but struck out for the second out.  Helms hit a ground ball to third and Victorino was tagged out to set the Phils down.

Barajas started the ninth with a double.  Burrell pinch-hit for Romero and Ruiz ran for Barajas.  Burrell flew to center for the first out and Rollins flew to right for the second out.  Bourn hit a ground ball to second that he beat out for a single, but Ruiz tried to score as the throw went to first and was nailed easily at the plate.  Really odd base-running, he was out by a lot.  Would have been nice to see Utley hit with men on first and third.

Utley doubled to start the tenth.  Howard flew to center for the first out.  Victorino was hit by a pitch, but Rowand and Nunez both went down to leave the runners stranded. 

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the eleventh and twelfth. 

Victorino singled to start the thirteenth and stole second.  Rowand followed with a single to right that moved Victorino to third.  Nunez was next and hit a ground ball to short with the infield in.  Rowand was forced at second as Victorino held third.  Ruiz was walked intentionally to load the bases.  Jamie Moyer hit for Durbin and struck out.  Huge at-bat and Moyer struck out on three pitches.  Rollins grounded to first and Pence won the game on the next pitch.

Tough call, but the Phillies had a lot of opportunities to overcome it.

Rollins was 1-for-7.

Bourn was 3-for-6 with his first career double and an RBI.

Utley 1-for-6 with a double.

Howard 1-for-6 with a double.

Victorino 3-for-5 with a double and two stolen bases.

Dobbs 1-for-3.  Rowand 1-for-3.

Helms 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI.

Nunez 0-for-2.

Barajas 1-for-4 with a double. 

No game today.

The first base umpire from Tuesday's game, Lance Barksdale, apologized to Manuel, who accepted magnanimously.  Instant replay doesn't belong anywhere near baseball.  The suggestion that Lee was out by a foot and a half in the linked article is something of a stretch, but Manuel may have been on a roll.  Lee was out by about two inches and a fraction of a second.

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