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August 4 2007

Phils lost a tough one tonight, and they did it in a way that makes it hard to feel real good about the future of Tom Gordon.  Manuel has seemed unwilling or unable to use the Phils' former closer, who was an All-Star last season, since Gordon's return from the DL.  He did tonight, putting him into a game the Phillies led 5-4 in the eighth.  Gordon gave up two-run blast to Prince Fielder that won the game for the Brewers.

The Phils lost to the Milwaukee Brewers tonight, falling 6-5 to drop to 57-53 on the season.  The jumped out to a 5-1 lead but couldn't hold on as they lost for the third time in their last four games.

Cole Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing four runs on seven hits.  Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and a home run.  He struck out five and did not walk a batter.

Ryan Braun homered to left with two outs in the first, putting the Brewers up 1-0.  Hamels got Prince Fielder on a ground ball to short to end the inning.

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

Braun singled with one out in the fourth, but Fielder hit into a double-play behind him.

Hamels struck out two in a 1-2-3 fifth.

Tony Graffanino singled to start the sixth.  Joe Dillon pinch-hit for the pitcher Brian Shouse and hit a ground ball to third.  Dobbs smothered it but it knocked him to his knees.  He recovered and threw to second, but too late to get Graffanino.  Hamels struck out Corey Hart for the second out of the inning.  JJ Hardy was next and he doubled over the head of Rowand in center.  Both runners scored, cutting the Phillies' lead to 5-3.  Braun flew to left for the second out, but Fielder was next and laced a single into right.  Hardy scored easily to make it 5-4.  Bill Hall was next and he moved Fielder to second with another single to right.  Kevin Mench followed and lined a ball to right, but a diving catch by Roberson ended the inning.

Hamels threw a 1-2-3 seventh.

Flash started the eighth with the Phils up 5-4.  He got Hart on a fly ball to right for the first out, but Graffanino was next and he dribbled one towards third.  Nunez, who had stayed in the game to play third after pinch-hitting in the top of the inning, may a nice play but his throw was not in time to get Graffanino.  Braun popped to first for the second out.  Fielder was next and he pounded Gordon's 2-2 pitch into the upper deck in right.  6-5 Brewers.  Hall popped to the catcher for the third out.

Righty David Bush, not Jeff Suppan, started for the Brewers.  Suppan apparently will start tomorrow.  The Phillies' lineup against the righty Bush went (1) Roberson (2) Iguchi (3) Rollins (4) Howard (5) Rowand (6) Burrell (7) Dobbs (8) Ruiz.   Roberson seems like a really bad choice to hit leadoff.

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

Howard started the second with a long home run to center, tying the game at 1-1.  Rowand followed with a walk and Burrell popped one out to left.  3-1 on Burrell's third home run in three days.  Dobbs grounded out but Ruiz walked and stole second as Hamels struck out swinging after failing to get the bunt down.  Roberson grounded back to the pitcher for the third out.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the third. 

Dobbs homered with two outs in the fourth, putting the Phillies up 4-1.  For Dobbs it was his first home run since June 15.  Ruiz followed with a double down the line in left, but Hamels struck out to end the frame.

Iguchi reached on an infield single with one out in the fifth.  Rollins flew to center for the second out, before Howard moved Iguchi to second with a single.  Rowand walked to load the bases, but Burrell grounded to third.

Dobbs started the sixth with a ball ripped to right-center that bounced once and cleared the wall for a ground-rule double.  Ruiz followed with his second double of the night, this one to right, and Dobbs scored to put the Phils up 5-1.  Hamels bunted Ruiz to third, but Roberson popped to the catcher in foul territory and Iguchi struck out looking for the third out. 

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the seventh. 

With one out in the eighth, Dobbs hit a high popup behind second.  Hardy and Graffanino both called for it and neither of them caught it.  They were standing right next to each other when the ball came down and it hit both of their gloves.  Dobbs ran all the way and wound up on second.  Nice hustle by Dobbs.  Hardy was charged with the error.  Ruiz walked, putting men on first and second with one out.  Hamels was due to hit and Manuel called on Nunez as the unlikely pinch-hitter.  Nunez hit into a double-pay to end the frame.

In the ninth, Roberson got ahead of closer Francisco Cordero 3-1 but swung at a pitch low and inside for strike two.  He hit the next pitch softly to right for the first out.  Iguchi smashed the first pitch he saw deep to right field.  Hart jumped at the track and timed it perfectly, catching the ball above the yellow line to take a game-tying home run away from Iguchi.  Rollins flew to right to end the game.

Roberson was 0-for-5.  He's a terrible choice to hit leadoff and he's in the lineup way too often.  Not one to criticize without offering an alternative, I suggest Jimmy Rollins as the leadoff hitter and Werth and Helms in right.  Roberson did make a great catch in right to end the sixth.

Iguchi was 1-for-5 and nearly tied the game with a home run in the ninth. 

Rollins was 0-for-5.  He's 2-for-his-last-14.

Howard was 2-for-4 with his 30th home run.

Rowand was 0-for-2 and walked twice. 

Burrell was 1-for-4 with his 17th home run but struck out twice.  Only the second time in his last 28 games that Burrell has struck out more than once in a game.

Dobbs was 2-for-4 with a home run and a double.  He also reached second when he kept running on his popup the Brewers' middle infielders botched.

Ruiz was 2-for-2 with two doubles, walked twice and stole a base. 

Adam Eaton (9-7, 5.87) faces righty Jeff Suppan (8-9, 4.97) tomorrow afternoon.  The good news is that Eaton had been better on the road that at home.  The bad news is that that's not saying a lot.  He's 6-3 with a 5.51 ERA in his 11 starts away from Philadelphia.  He's not getting better as the year goes along.  He's 2-2 with a 6.21 ERA in his six July starts.  All the stuff about Suppan is what it was yesterday when I thought he was starting today.

August 4 2007


Team W-L R R/G NL Rank R OPS (NL Rank) SB CS
MIL 58-51 524 4.81 4 776 (3) 57 25
PHI 57-51 592 5.48 1 818 (1) 92 14


Team W-L RA RA/G NL Rank RA Starter ERA Pen ERA
MIL 58-51 497 4.56 T-7 4.42 (8) 3.99 (10)
PHI 57-51 547 5.06 12 4.89 (13) 4.43 (14)

Yovani Gallardo is one of those names you may just want to remember.  The 21-year-old was as good as advertised last night as he mowed down the best offense in the National League, holding the Phils to a run on four hits over 6 2/3 innings.  Gallardo's Brewers took the first game in the three-game set 2-1.

Not to be lost in the brilliant outing by Galladro is another excellent start from the Phillies' Kyle Kendrick, who has already given the team far more than they could have expected from the 23-year-old up from Double-A.

The only offense the Phils mustered was a solo shot off the bat of Burrell in the seventh.  We're going to need some new words soon to describe how hot Burrell is if he keeps this up much longer.  He's hitting behind guys who most definitely are not -- over the last two games Howard and Rowand have combined to go 1-for-16 with 10 strikeouts.

Chris Coste continues to see his playing time increase, and with good reason.  He can really hit.  He's a bad defensive player, though, and the predicable consequence of that is bad defensive plays.  There were two close plays at the plate last night, accounting for both Milwaukee runs.  On the first one the runner kicked the ball out of Coste's glove and on the second he slid safely into a plate that could have been a blocked a bit better.  It would have taken a good play by Coste to get an out on either of the plays.  The Phils didn't get one.

The Phillies lost to the Milwaukee Brewers last night, falling 2-1 to drop to 57-52 on the year.

Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and was very good.  He went seven innings, allowing two runs on eight hits and a walk.  Only one of the hits went for extra-bases, a double.  He struck out two and dropped his ERA to 3.88 in his ten starts this season.  He started the seventh inning having thrown 101 pitches, which is the kind of thing the Phils might just wanna keep an eye on.

In the first, he got ahead of Corey Hart 1-2 before he hit Hart with a pitch.  Hart stole second with JJ Hardy at the plate.  Hardy grounded to Dobbs at third for the first out, Hart held second.  Ryan Braun flew to right for the second out.  Prince Fielder was next and he singled into right.  Werth's throw home was strong but a little up the third base line.  The ball arrived in plenty of time to get Hart, but Hart kicked the ball out of Coste's glove and was safe to give the Brewers a 1-0 lead.  Bill Hall flew to right for the third out. 

Johnny Estrada singled with one out in the second.  Tony Graffanino was next and hit a ball in the hole at short, Rollins made a very nice play to force Estrada at second for the second out of the inning.  The pitcher Yovani Gallardo popped to Rollins in shallow center to end the inning. 

Kendrick threw a 1-2-3 third.

Fielder started the fourth with a single and moved to second on a ground out to third by Hall.  Jenkins lined to first for the second out and Estrada flew to center to end the inning.

Gallardo laced a single past Dobbs and into left with one out in the fifth.  Hart struck out for the second out, but Hardy was next and he chopped a ball back up the middle.  Kendrick jumped and got a glove on it, but couldn't hold it and Hardy was safe with an infield single as Gallardo went to second.  Braun followed with another single, this one to left.  Gallardo scored on a close play at the plate, sliding in just ahead of Coste's tag to put Milwaukee up 2-0.  Not a great job by Coste blocking the plate after having the ball kicked out of his glove in the first.  Fielder popped out to Dobbs in foul territory to end the inning.

Kendrick got the first two in the sixth before Estrada doubled to center.  The Phillies walked the righty Tony Graffanino, who was hitting .237 at the time, to pitch to the pitcher Gallardo, who had smoked a single his last time up.  Gallardo grounded to third and Dobbs tagged the bag to force Estrada and end the inning.  Would have tried to get Graffanino.

Kendrick started the seventh having thrown 101 pitches.  There's a bad idea for you right there, but it worked out great for the Phils with a lot of help from the Brewers.  Kendrick got the first out on a nice play by Nunez at third on a ground ball off the bat of Hart.  Hardy flew to right for the second out.  Braun was next and he singled into center and bizarrely went for two.  He was thrown out easily to end the inning.  Kendrick only had to throw five pitches in the inning.

Romero pitched the eighth and hit Fielder, which displeased Fielder.  Hall hit into a  double-play and Jenkins flew to right.  Romero's ERA with the Phillies is 0.82 in 17 appearances.  In 11 innings he's walked 12 but allowed just five hits. 

The Phillies' lineup against righty Yovani Gallardo went (1) Werth (2) Taguchi (3) Rollins (4) Howard (5) Rowand (6) Burrell (7) Dobbs (8) Coste.  Werth back in right and hitting leadoff after the big game on Thursday.  Dobbs at third against the righty and Coste behind the plate again.

Rollins singled to right with two outs in the first but Howard struck out behind him.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the second, third, fourth and fifth.

Kendrick looped a single into left-center with one out in the sixth.  Werth flew softly to center for the second out, but Taguchi singled to right.  It put men on first and second with two outs, but Rollins grounded softly to first to end the frame.

Howard walked to start the seventh.  Rowand was next and hit into a double-play.  The double-play hurt cause Burrell was next and hit a 1-0 pitch out to left to cut the Brewer lead to 2-1.  Burrell's blast chased Galladro and Manuel called on Nunez to hit for Dobbs against the new Brewers' pitcher, lefty Brian Shouse.  Nunez grounded to short to set the Phillies down.

Werth walked with two outs in the eighth and moved to second on a passed ball.  Iguchi struck out to leave him stranded.

Francisco Cordero struck out Rollins, Howard and Rowand in the ninth.

Werth was 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Iguchi 1-for-4 with a strikeout.

Rollins 1-for-4 with a strikeout.  281/327/404 with no home runs in 89 at-bats as a three-hitter this season, 300/348/565 with 20 home runs in 393 at-bats as a leadoff hitter.  The why is the hard part, but I'd let him hit leadoff try to figure out the why some other time.

Howard was 0-for-3 with a walk and three strikeouts. 

Rowand was 0-for-4 with a strikeout.

Three through five hitters are 3-for-25 with one RBI for the Phils in their last two games.

Burrell was 1-for-3 with a home run, the only extra-base hit for the Phils.

Dobbs was 0-for-2.

Coste 0-for-3 with a strikeout.

Before the game, the Phillies put Rod Barajas on the DL with a strained groin and called back Clay Condrey from Triple-A. 

Cole Hamels (12-5, 3.50) faces righty Jeff Suppan (8-9, 4.97) tonight.  Over his last three starts Hamels has allowed four runs on 11 hits over 22 innings (1.64 ERA).  Hamels faced the Brewers on May 16 in Philadelphia and was awesome, holding Milwaukee to a run on two hits over eight innings.  He was perfect through six innings and struck out 11 in the game.  Suppan has been killed by lefties this season.  They are hitting .341 against him with a 1.91 ratio.  He started the May 16 game in Philadelphia and took the loss, allowing six runs on nine hits over seven innings.  Only four of the runs were earned.  Rowand hit a three-run shot against him in that game.

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