Archive for May, 2008

Antiques roadshow

Old pitchers have been the story of the first two games of the Phils’ series with the Diamondbacks. After 45-year-old Jamie Moyer bested young Max Scherzer in the first game of the set, 44-year-old Randy Johnson got the win last night as he outpitched Adam Eaton.

Not that outpitching Eaton was that remarkable a feat. Eaton again was hurt by the big inning, and for the second time in three starts didn’t get an out in the fifth inning. The lowlight was walking The Big Unit on four pitches with the bases loaded, but if lowlights are your thing the three-run bomb by Stephen Drew two batters later is highly recommended.

Ryan Howard started the game on the bench for the Phils against the lefty Johnson. After striking out in a pinch-hitting appearance Howard is hitting .168 on the year. He’s 1-for-his-last-16 with eight strikeouts.

The Phillies lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks last night, falling 6-4 to drop to 19-15 on the season. The four-game series is tied at one game apiece.

Eaton got the start for the Phillies and went four innings, allowing six runs on five hits and three walks. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and a home run. He struck out one.

In the first he got ahead of Chris Young 0-2 before Young ripped a double down the left field line. Stephen Drew grounded back to Eaton for the first out, with Young holding second. Eric Byrnes was next and he hit a chopper down the third base line. It went off the heel of Feliz’s glove and Feliz flipped to Eaton covering third to try and get Young at third, but the flip was wild and the ball rolled down the third base line towards home. Byrnes went to second on the flipping error by Feliz. Fourth error on the year for Feliz. Conor Jackson was next and he lined a single into left-center off the tip of the glove of a diving Bruntlett. Young scored to make it 1-0 and Byrnes went to third. Justin Upton followed with a ground ball back to the mound and Byrnes was caught between third and home in a rundown. Upton went to second on the rundown, so it put men on second and third for Mark Reynolds with two outs. Reynolds popped to short for the third out.

Eaton hit Augie Ojeda with a 1-2 pitch with one out in the second. Pitcher Randy Johnson couldn’t bunt him to second and struck out for the second out. Young grounded to third for the third out.

Eaton threw a 1-2-3 third.

He started the fourth with a 2-1 lead and everything went bad quickly. He walked Upton on five pitches to start the inning. Reynolds was next and hit a ball to deep right that went in and out of the glove of Werth for a double. Miguel Montero followed with a walk to load the bases. Ojeda flew to center for the first out and the runners had to hold. The pitcher Randy Johnson was next and Eaton walked him on four pitches, forcing in Upton to tie the game at 2-2. Young hit a ground ball to short and Johnson was forced at second for the first out as Reynolds scored. 3-2 with men on first and third for Drew. Drew hit a three-run homer to right-center. 6-2. Byrnes flew to right for the third out.

Eaton allowed three walks, a double and a home run in the inning.

Seanez threw a 1-2-3 fifth and a 1-2-3 sixth to drop his ERA on the year to 1.38. After walking eight hitters in his first nine innings on the season, he hasn’t walked a batter in his last four innings.

Gordon started the seventh and gave up a one out single to Drew. Flash threw away a pickoff attempt at first with Byrnes at the plate and Drew went to second. Drew moved to third when Byrnes grounded out for the second out. Jackson flew to right for the third out.

Chad Durbin started the eighth with Brad Harman playing third base after Howard hit for Feliz in the top of the inning. Upton led off with a single, but Durbin struck out Reynolds and Montero flew to left for the second out. With Ojeda at the plate, Upton was caught stealing to end the inning.

Durbin threw 17 pitches in his inning. Seanez needed just 16 to throw two. Gordon threw 13.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Randy Johnson went (1) Victorino (2) Bruntlett (3) Utley (4) Burrell (5) Werth (6) Feliz (8) Coste (8) Harman. Howard starts the game on the bench against the lefty. Utley plays first with Harman at second. Werth in right and Victorino in center. Coste catches.

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

Feliz walked with two outs in the second and moved to second when Coste was hit by a pitch. Harman flew to center for the third out.

Eaton led off the third and hammered a 1-0 pitch into center for a double. Victorino put down a pretty bunt and it took a nice bare-handed play by Reynolds at third to get him at first. Eaton went to third, but it didn’t matter cause Bruntlett hit the first pitch he saw out to left to put the Phillies up 2-1. Johnson struck out Utley and Burrell to end the frame.

Werth singled to start the fourth. Feliz followed and looped a ball into shallow left-center, but Byrnes made a nice diving catch for the first out. Werth stole second with Coste at the plate and went to third on a throwing error by catcher Miguel Montero. Coste struck out and Harman flew to right, so the Phils couldn’t score after the Phils put a man on third with one out.

With one out in the fifth, Victorino walked and scored when Bruntlett ripped an 0-1 pitch into the right field corner for a double, cutting the Arizona lead to 6-3. Utley grounded to first and Burrell struck out swinging.

Werth started the sixth with a home run, making the score 6-4. Feliz was next and singled off the glove of Conor Jackson and into right field, but he was thrown out going for second. Coste popped to short and Harman struck out swinging.

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

Burrell singled with one out in the eighth and went to second on a ground out by Werth. With righty Tony Pena on the mound, Howard hit for Feliz and struck out to end the frame.

Howard and not Dobbs was a choice Manuel made in the eighth. Howard got a chance as the tying run with a man on and the Phils down 6-4, but it meant that Harman had to play third in the bottom of the eighth. Dobbs would get a chance to tie the game with a man on in the ninth against a righty anyway.

Righty Brandon Lyon came on for the Diamondbacks in the ninth to protect a 6-4 lead. Coste popped out to the catcher for the first out before Ruiz hit for Harman and singled into left. It brought Chad Durbin up as the winning run and Dobbs hit for Durbin and flew to left for the second out. Victorino singled, moving Ruiz to third and putting the tying run on base for Bruntlett, but Bruntlett flew out to left to leave both runners stranded and end the game.

Victorino was 1-for-3 with a walk. He’s 5-for-his-last-13 with two doubles. He still has just four extra-base hits and a .315 slugging percentage on the season.

Bruntlett was 2-for-5 with a home run, a double and three RBI. He’s 4-for-10 with three extra-base hits and six RBI in the first two games of the series.

Utley was 0-for-4 and struck out three times.

Burrell 1-for-4 and struck out twice.

Werth was 2-for-4 with his sixth home run.

Feliz 1-for-2 with a walk and robbed of another hit by a nice catch by Byrnes.

Coste 0-for-3.

Harman 0-for-3.

Kyle Kendrick (2-2, 5.01) faces righty Micah Owings (4-1, 4.42) tonight. Owings was 4-0 with a 2.42 ERA in his first four starts. In his last two he’s allowed 11 earned runs in 10 2/3 innings. Overall on the season he’s allowed six home runs in 36 2/3 innings. Lefties are hitting .310 against him, righties .145. He made two starts against the Phils in 2007 and went 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA. May 8 and May 29. Lefties are hitting .350 with a 2.05 ratio against Kendrick, righties .247, 1.18. He hasn’t walked a batter in his last two starts and has never faced Arizona.


Phils sack Max

Team W-L R R/G NL Rank R OPS (NL) SB CS
               
ARI 21-10 179 5.77 2 809 (2) 15 2
PHI 18-14 150 4.69 7 768 (7) 15 5

Team W-L RA RA/G NL Rank RA Starter ERA Pen ERA
             
ARI 21-10 125 4.03 3 3.86 (4) 2.43 (1)
PHI 18-14 137 4.28 6 4.31 (9) 2.66 (2)

After the schedule-makers gave them the struggling Pirates, Padres and Giants all in a row you would have to think going to Arizona to face the Diamondbacks with their NL-best 21-10 record would be something of a shock for the Phils. If it was they didn’t show it. The pounded out 11 runs on 17 hits and took the first game of the four-game set 11-4.

The Phils won by seven runs, but the game wasn’t that close. Jamie Moyer outpitched fireballing prospect Max Scherzer and the Phils hit up and down their lineup. The first three in the order for the Phils went 6-for-14. At the bottom of the lineup, Jenkins, Feliz and Ruiz combined to go 8-for-16. The Phils scored 11 times without a home run.

The Phillies beat the Arizona Diamondbacks last night, winning 11-4 to improve to 19-14 on the season. The Phils are five games over .500 for the first time in 2008.

Moyer got the start for the Phillies and was fantastic. He went seven innings, allowing two runs on six hits. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a triple and a home run. He struck out five and didn’t walk a batter.

With two outs in the first, Orlando Hudson singled to right and moved to second on an error by Jenkins. Conor Jackson flew to right for the third out.

Justin Upton singled to start the second with the Phils up 1-0. Mark Reynolds flew to center for the first out before Chris Snyder ripped a ball ticketed for left. Feliz made a great play at the line and threw to second to force Upton for the second out. Stephen Drew followed and tripled into the gap in right-center. Snyder scored to tie the game at 1-1. The pitcher Max Scherzer grounded to short to end the inning.

Moyer threw a 1-2-3 third with the Phillies up 5-1.

He struck out Upton and Reynolds in a 1-2-3 fourth.

And Drew in a 1-2-3 fifth.

Chris Young and Eric Byrnes started the sixth with back-to-back singles. It put men on first and second with nobody out for Hudson, who hit into a double-play. Jackson grounded to short for the third out.

Moyer started the seventh with a 9-1 lead. He got the first two before Snyder homered to left. 9-2. Drew struck out to end the inning.

Madson pitched the eighth and gave up a one-out single to Young, but got the next two to leave him stranded.

Condrey started the ninth, seeing his first action since April 27. In that time the Phillies called on Brett Myers to throw 121 pitches in a start and asked both Romero and Lidge to pitch four days in a row. If you’re going to have a problem, seventh guy in the bullpen is a nice place to have one. But the Phils need someone they are willing to put in the game when the score isn’t 11-2. Pinch-hitter Miguel Montero and Upton started the inning with singles. Reynolds was next and he bounced one into right. Jenkins failed to field the ball as he charged and was given his second error of the game. Montero scored to cut the Phillies’ lead to 11-3. With men on first and third and nobody out, Robby Hammock hit one to third and Feliz came home with the ball to get Upton for the first out. Drew loaded the bases with a single to left. Chris Burke hit a ground ball to second for the second out. Reynolds scored and it was 11-4. Young grounded to short to end the game.

Condrey’s ERA is up to 7.45 on the season after allowing two runs on four hits in the inning. He threw 17 pitches, Madson 11.

The Phillies’ lineup against righty Max Scherzer went (1) Victorino (2) Bruntlett (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Jenkins (7) Feliz (8) Ruiz. Werth again on the bench against the righty with Jenkins in right and Victorino in center. Ruiz catches.

Victorino led off the game with a double and Bruntlett followed and was hit by a pitch while trying to bunt. Utley grounded to first and Bruntlett was forced at second for the first out as Victorino moved to third. Howard flew to center and Victorino scored to put the Phils up 1-0. Burrell struck out to end the frame.

Jenkins started the second with a single, but Feliz and Ruiz struck out behind him. Moyer singled into left, moving Jenkins to second. Victorino grounded back to the pitch to leave both runners stranded.

In the third, Utley doubled with one out and Howard followed with a walk. Burrell struck out for the second out but Jenkins followed with a single into center. Utley scored to put the Phillies up 2-1. With Feliz at the plate a wild pitch moved Howard to third before Feliz smoked a ball at the feet of Drew at short. It bounced once and went off his glove for an error. Howard scored to put the Phillies up 3-1. Jenkins went to second, but he came around to score when Ruiz followed with a single up the middle. 4-1 with first and second and two down for Moyer. Moyer sliced a double down the left field line scoring Feliz to make it 5-1 and moving Ruiz to third. Victorino popped to short for the third out.

Utley walked with one out in the fourth, but Howard and Burrell went down behind him.

Feliz singled with one out in the fifth, but Ruiz popped to the catcher and Moyer flew to left.

Victorino and Bruntlett put runners on first and second with nobody out in the sixth when they started the inning with back-to-back singles. Utley flew to center, Howard flew to left and Burrell grounded to third.

Jenkins started the seventh with a single before Feliz flew out for the first out. Ruiz moved Jenkins to third with a single and Moyer hit for himself and bunted Ruiz to second for the second out. Righty Edgar Gonzalez walked Victorino intentionally to pitch to the righty Bruntlett. Bruntlett lined a ball into right-center and Upton dove for it and missed. It rolled for a while and Bruntlett had a three-run triple that put the Phils up 8-1. Utley walked to put men on first and third before Howard singled, scoring Bruntlett to make it 9-1. Burrell grounded to short to end the inning.

Feliz doubled with one out in the eighth and moved to third when Ruiz followed with an infield single. Dobbs hit for Moyer and hit a ball to center for the second out, deep enough to score Feliz and put the Phils up 10-2. Victorino fouled out to third to end the frame.

Utley doubled with one out in the ninth and moved to third on a ground out to second by Howard. Taguchi hit a ball to third that Reynolds couldn’t handle, Utley scored on the error to extend the lead to 11-2. Jenkins grounded to second for the third out.

Victorino was 2-for-5 with a double and a walk.

Bruntlett 2-for-5 with a triple and three RBI. Great day for Bruntlett, but he doesn’t belong hitting second. Even after the big day he’s hitting 231/333/308 as a number two hitter.

Utley 2-for-4 with two doubles and two walks.

Howard 1-for-4 with a walk and two RBI.

Burrell 0-for-5, struck out twice and left eight men on base.

Jenkins 3-for-6 with an RBI and two errors.

Feliz 2-for-5 with a double.

Ruiz 3-for-5 with an RBI.

Adam Eaton (0-0, 4.72) faces lefty Randy Johnson (1-1, 4.79) tonight. Johnson had a 2.70 ERA in his first three starts before he allowed six runs in four innings against the Astros on Wednesday. Lefties have one hit against him on the season, they’re hitting .083. Righties are hitting .286. Johnson only made ten starts in 2007, but two of them game against the Phils. In the two starts, which came on May 9 and May 30, Johnson went 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA. Eaton is still looking for his first decision on the year. He hasn’t allowed more than four runs in any of his six starts. His home runs are way down compared to last season, he’s allowed just three in 34 1/3 innings. Lefites are hitting .292 against him, righties .236. He made one start against Arizona last year and allowed three runs over seven innings on May 8.


Phils struggle to earn runs, but Eugenio struggles to field as Velez other second basemen

Carlos Ruiz picked a nice time for his first home run of the year, it was a good moment in an ugly win for the Phils yesterday afternoon. With one out in the eighth he muscled one out to left to tie the game at 5-5 — it was the only earned run the Phils would score in the game. In the bottom of the ninth Ryan Howard scored the winning run for the Phils, he came around to score on a ground ball to second that went under Eugenio Velez’s glove for the Giants’ third error of the day.

Ugly or not, a win is a win and this one kept the Phils atop the NL East for at least another day. Charlie Manuel’s use of his bullpen in the series with San Francisco was curious to say the least. Brad Lidge was the latest Phillie reliever to pitch for the fourth straight day with several pitchers in the pen who pitch rarely if ever. Whether this is by choice or necessity it could signal bad times ahead for the bullpen, cause if you think the Phils need Lidge and Romero pitching well in the beginning of May just wait till you see how much they need them pitching well in the beginning of September.

The Phillies beat the San Francisco Giants yesterday afternoon, winning 6-5 to improve to 18-14 on the season. The Phils take the series two games to one.

Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. Four of the hits went for extra-bases, three doubles and a home run. He struck out five and didn’t walk a batter.

He threw a 1-2-3 first.

With two outs in the second Rich Aurillia doubled high off the wall in right. Hamels struck Dan Ortmeier out on a 2-2 pitch that was low and outside for a called strike three to end the frame.

Hamels struck out Steve Holm, Tim Lincecum and Eugenio Velez is a 1-2-3 third.

Emmanuel Burriss singled to start the fourth with the Phils up 2-0. He moved to second when Winn followed with a ground out. Rowand struck out for the second out before Jose Castillo singled into center. Victorino came home and his throw was on the first base side of home. Burriss really hammered Ruiz, who held the ball, but Burriss was safe anyway. Odd looking play because Burriss had already crossed home when he collided with Ruiz. Aurillia followed with a double to left-center that scored Castillo and tied the game at 2-2. Ortmeier flew to right to end the frame.

Holm started the fifth with a double and Lincecum bunted him to third. Velez popped up to third and Burriss grounded to short on a nice play by Bruntlett behind second for the third out.

Rowand singled to left with one out in the sixth. Castillo was next and flew to Burrell on the warning track right in front of the wall. Aurillia was next and he blasted one out to left, tying the game at 4-4. Ortmeier flew out to center to set the Giants down.

Durbin started the seventh for the Phillies. With one out, John Bowker hit for Lincecum and looped a single into center. Velez hit into a double-play to end the frame.

Durbin returned for the eighth. He got the first two before Rowand singled to left. Castillo was next and he hit a ball down the line in right field and into the corner. Jenkins hit Utley and Utley’s throw arrived home about the same time as Rowand, but Ruiz dropped the ball and Rowand slid under the tag as well. Rowand was safe to put the Giants up 5-4. Fred Lewis hit for Ortmeier and flew to left for the third out.

Lidge started the ninth with the score tied at 5-5, pitching for the fourth straight day and the third straight day in a non-save situation. He threw a 1-2-3 inning. It took five pitches.

Durbin threw 38 pitches, Lidge five.

The Phillies’ lineup against righty Tim Lincecum went (1) Victorino (2) Bruntlett (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Jenkins (7) Feliz (8) Ruiz. Victorino and Bruntlett at the top of the order. Werth on the bench with Jenkins in right against the righty. Ruiz back behind the plate.

Victorino led off the first with a double into left-center. Bruntlett struck out swinging and Utley looking before Howard flew to left to end the inning.

Burrell lashed a double to left-center to start the second. Jenkins struck out before Feliz singled just over the glove of Castillo at third and into left. Burrell went to third. Ruiz popped to shallow right, Winn took it for the second out and Burrell had to hold third. Lincecum struck Hamels out on three pitches to leave both runners stranded.

Victorino started the third with a ground ball to short and was safe when the throw pulled Aurillia off the bag. Error on Burriss at short, although it looked like Aurillia tagged Victorino and he should have been out. Bruntlett moved him to second with a single into right before Utley flew to shallow center for the first out. Howard moved the runners to second and third with a ground out before Burrell doubled off the wall in left. Both runners scored and the Phils led 2-0. Jenkins struck out for the third out.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the fourth with the game tied at 2-2.

Victorino started the fifth with a single. Bruntlett hit a ground ball to third and Castillo threw low to second where Velez didn’t handle it. The ball went into right and Victorino took third on Castillo’s error, but Velez should have caught the ball. Utley flew to shallow right for the first out and the runners had to hold. Howard drew a walk that loaded the bases. Lincecum’s first pitch to Burrell was in the dirt. Holm blocked it and it dribbled towards third base. Victorino scored from third to put the Phils up 3-2 and the other runners moved up to second and third. Burrell was walked intentionally to load the bases. Jenkins flew to left and Bruntlett scored, extending the lead to 4-2. Another wild pitch, this one way over the head of Holm, moved the runners to second and third before Feliz flew to center to end the inning.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the sixth. Brad Harman hit for Hamels and grounded to short for the second out.

With one out in the seventh, Utley was hit by a pitch in the middle of the back and stole second. Howard walked and righty Vinnie Chulk struck Burrell out swinging at a 3-2 pitch for the second out. Chulk stayed in to pitch to Jenkins and Jenkins flew to right to end the inning.

Ruiz homered to left with one out in the eighth, tying the game at 5-5. Dobbs, who hit for Durbin, and Victorino went down behind him.

With two outs in the ninth Keiichi Yabu walked Howard and Burrell back-to-back. Jenkins hit a ground ball to second that went under the glove of Velez for an error and Howard stormed home to score the winning run and give the Phils a 6-5 win. Nice jump by Howard with two outs. Holm didn’t catch the throw home, but it wouldn’t have matter if he did.

Victorino was 2-for-5 with a double. 3-for-14 with a double in the series. 231/296/292 on the season.

Bruntlett was 1-for-5. 2-for-11 with two singles in the series and 222/278/267.

Utley 0-for-4 with a strikeout and left five men on base. 4-for-11 with two home runs in the series. 357/432/762.

Howard 0-for-2 with three walks and scored the winning run. 0-for-11 with six strikeouts and three walks in the series. 167/294/351.

Burrell 2-for-3 with two doubles and two walks. 3-for-10 with two doubles, a home run and four walks in the series. 330/459/689.

Jenkins was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts, an RBI, four men left on base and a game-winning ground ball to second base. 1-for-9 with a home run in the series. He has one walk in his last 37 at-bats. 250/286/359.

Feliz was 1-for-4. 3-for-8 with a home run in the series. 214/270/379.

Ruiz 1-for-4 with a big home run. 1-for-5 with a home run in the series. 203/272/297.

Dobbs was 0-for-1 in the game and 0-for-5 in the series. 293/356/488.

Werth 1-for-6 in the series. 258/343/506.

Coste was 0-for-6 with a walk in the series. He’s hitting 304/396/522 on the season.

Taguchi did not have an at-bat in the series and is hitting 205/244/256 on the year.

Harman 0-for-1 in the series. 200/333/400 in five at-bats on the year.

Jamie Moyer (1-2, 4.50) faces righty Max Scherzer (0-0, 0.00) tonight for the first of four in Arizona. Superstar to be Scherzer turns 24 in July and has made one appearance with the Diamondbacks. It was memorable. On Tuesday he came on in relief of Edgar Gonzalez against the Astros and went 4 1/3 innings without allowing a hit or a walk while striking out seven. Opponentws are htting .336 against Moyer on the year, although he has yet to allow more than four earned runs in any start. Moyer went 1-1 with a 4.30 ERA and a 1.09 ratio in two starts against Arizona last season. May 9 and May 30.


Cain able

The Phils got three hits last night and even against the weak-hitting Giants it wasn’t enough. Rudy Seanez, offering a demo of why Manuel wants to pitch guys three and four days in a row rather than use his whole bullpen, allowed a run on four hits in the top of the tenth. A day after the Phils beat San Francisco closer Brian Wilson in extra-innings they went quietly against him in the bottom of the inning.

Brett Myers pitched well for the Phillies, but he needed 121 pitches to get through seven innings. Win or lose, it’s a mistake to let Myers throw that many pitches when the season isn’t on the line, just like it was a mistake to let Hamels go that many last month in Milwaukee. The Phillies lost both of those games.

Finally, reports of life in the bat of Ryan Howard have been greatly exaggerated. Despite opening May with a huge day, Howard has gone 0-for-9 with six strikeouts in his last two games.

The Phillies lost to the San Francisco Giants last night, falling 3-2 in ten innings to drop to 17-14 on the season.

Myers got the start for the Phils and went seven innings, allowing two runs on six hits and three walks. Only one of the hits went for extra-bases, a home run. He struck out a season-high ten.

Myers walked Fred Lewis to start the first. With Eugenio Velez at the plate, Lewis stole second. Coste’s throw beat Lewis, but Bruntlett didn’t get the tag down and didn’t tag Lewis out when Lewis slid past the bag. Velez grounded to short for the first out and Lewis went to third. Randy Winn singled to center and Lewis scored to put the Giants up 1-0. Bengie Molina moved Winn to third with another singled and Aaron Rowand walked to load the bases with one out. Myers got out of it without further damage by striking out John Bowker and Rich Aurillia.

Myers threw 29 pitches in the first inning. The Phils could have prevented a critical run if they had gotten Lewis stealing second.

Pitcher Matt Cain singled to left with one out in the second, but Myers got the next two.

Rowand single with two outs in the third, but Myers picked him off and Rowand was tagged out as Howard threw to Bruntlett to end the frame.

Myers struck out Bowker and Aurillia in a 1-2-3 fourth.

He started the fifth with the game tied at 1-1. With one out Lewis lined a 3-2 pitch out to right, putting San Francisco up 2-1. Velez walked and stole second, but Myers struck out Winn for the second out. Molina hit a ball back to the mound that Myers deflected but didn’t field. Molina had an infield single and Velez went to third. Rowand grounded to third to set the Giants down.

The game was tied at 2-2 when Myers started the sixth. He struck out Bowker and Brian Bocock in a 1-2-3 frame.

He came back with a 1-2-3 seventh.

Durbin started the eighth after 121 pitches for Myers. He got the first two before Rowand drew a walk. Bowker was next and hit a ground ball to Utley’s right. Utley dove towards second to make the play and threw to first. Howard made a nice stretch at first and Bowker was out to end the frame.

Lidge started the ninth inning, pitching for the third straight day and for the second straight day in a non-save situation. Aurillia grounded to short for the first out. Ray Durham hit for Bocock and reached on an infield single up the middle. Utley fielded going towards second base but Durham just beat it out. Durham stole second with Emmanuel Burriss, pinch-hitting for the pitcher Tyler Walker, at the plate. Burriss hit a soft ground ball to third for the second out and Durham moved to third. Lewis grounded softly to first to end the frame.

Seanez started the tenth and got the first out before Winn singled. Winn stole second before Molina hit a ball to left that rolled to the wall for a long single. Winn scored to put the Giants up 3-2. Rowand struck out looking for the second out before Bowker and Aurillia loaded the bases with back-to-back singles. Molina is absurdly slow not to be able to 1) get to second on his single to the wall or 2) score from second on the single into left by Aurillia with two outs. Jose Castillo hit for the pitcher and grounded to short for the third out.

Three innings for the pen in which they allowed a run on five hits, all singles and four allowed by Seanez, and a walk. Lidge threw 14 pitches but was throwing for his third day in a row. Durbin 19, Seanez 21.

Condrey still doesn’t get into the game. The Phillies need to use their whole bullpen even if it means losing a game. Tonight they used Myers too much and Lidge too much and they lost anyway.

The Phillies lineup against righty Matt Cain went (1) Victorino (2) Dobbs (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Jenkins (7) Coste (8) Bruntlett. Werth on the bench with Jenkins in right and Victorino in center. Dobbs plays third and hits second, putting lefties 2-3-4 in the order for the Phils. Second start in two games for Coste behind the plate.

With two outs in the first, Utley singled and moved to second on a balk. Howard struck out for the third out.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the second and again in the third.

Dobbs struck out to start the fourth. Utley was next and drove a 2-1 pitch out to left-center to tie the game at 1-1. Howard and Burrell struck out behind him.

Jenkins started the fifth and hit the first pitch he saw just out down the line in right. It tied the game at 2-2. Coste and Bruntlett struck out and Myers popped to second to end the inning. Five strikeouts and two home runs allowed in the fourth and fifth for Cain.

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

Coste walked to start the eighth and Ruiz ran for him at first. Cain left the game with a problem with his right hamstring before Bruntlett bunted Ruiz to second against righty Tyler Walker. Werth hit for Durbin and grounded to third for the second out. Victorino flew to Rowand in left-center to end the inning with Ruiz stranded.

Feliz started the ninth and walked on a 3-2 pitch. Utley lined a ball back through the middle, but the pitcher Traschner got a glove on it, deflecting it and slowing it down. Velez took it at second and started a double-play. Howard struck out for the third time in the game.

Brian Wilson was back on the job in the bottom of the tenth to protect a 3-2. Burrell led off and drew a walk. Eaton ran for him. Jenkins hit a double-play ball to short but the Giants only got one. Eaton did a nice job sliding into Velez at second and the relay to first was bad. Ruiz struck out and Bruntlett grounded softly to short on a nice play by Burriss to end the game.

Three hits and two walks in the game for the Phillies.

Victorino was 0-for-4.

Dobbs 0-for-3. The guys who start the game in the one and two spots, Victorino/Werth on Friday and Victorino/Dobbs on Saturday, are 2-for-17 in the last two games.

Utley 2-for-4 with a home run, one of two extra-base hits for the Phils.

Howard 0-for-4 and struck out three times.

Burrell 0-for-3 with a walk.

Jenkins 1-for-4 with a home run, his first extra-base hit since April 17.

Coste was 0-for-2 with a walk. The Giants stole four bases in the game, three with Coste behind the plate.

Bruntlett 0-for-3.

Cole Hamels (3-3, 2.70) faces righty Tim Lincecum (4-1, 1.73) this afternoon. Lincecum has allowed more than two runs in just one of his six appearances on the season, five of which have been starts. Lefties are hitting .290 against him, righties .238. He’s allowed 15 walks in 36 1/3 innings, which is too many, but just one home run. He made two starts against the Phils last year and was hit hard in both of them. May 6 and June 3. Hamels has given the Phillies at least seven innings in each of his six starts on the season. Righties are hitting .197 against him, lefties .216. He was 2-0 with a 2.81 ERA in two starts against the Giants last season. He started the May 6 game against Lincecum and also pitched on June 2.


Burrell gets around round round on Brian Wilson

Team W-L R R/G NL Rank R OPS (NL) SB CS
               
SF 13-16 93 3.21 16 676 (14) 33 10
PHI 16-13 136 4.69 4 780 (4) 12 5

Team W-L RA RA/G NL Rank RA Starter ERA Pen ERA
             
SF 13-16 131 4.52 T-8 4.17 (9) 4.10 (9)
PHI 16-13 124 4.28 T-6 4.32 (10) 2.56 (1)

The pitchers, relievers in particular, have carried more than their share of the load in the early going for the Phils. More than once they’ve helped the team come out with a win in a game where the performance of the offense was lack-luster. Last night the bats returned the favor.

After the Giants came back from down 4-1 to force extra-innings and then pulled ahead with a run in the top of the tenth off of the overused JC Romero, San Francisco closer Brian Wilson came on to protect a one-run lead in the bottom of the tenth. He threw fastball after fastball past the heart of the Phillies order. Utley managed to loop a single into right-center field, but Werth and Howard both struck out. The Phils were down to their last strike when Pat Burrell blasted a 3-2 pitch out to left to win the game.

The Phillies beat the San Francisco Giants last night, winning 6-5 in ten innings to improve to 17-13 on the season. They are four games above .500 for the first time on the season.

Kendrick got the start for the Phils and went six innings, allowing three runs on eight hits. Just one of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out six.

Randy Winn singled to left with two outs in the first, but Kendrick got cleanup hitter Bengie Molina on a fly ball to left to end the frame.

He started the second up 2-0. John Bowker singled to center with one out, but Kendrick got the next two to leave him stranded.

Kendrick struck out Fred Lewis and Ray Durham in a 1-2-3 third.

Winn singled to start the fourth, but Molina followed and hit into a double-play. Aaron Rowand was next and he doubled into left. Bowker was next he lined a single to center. Rowand held third, but Jose Castillo followed with a single into right-center. Rowand scored to cut the Phillies’ lead to 2-1 and Bowker went to second. Emmanuel Burriss grounded to short for the third out to leave both runners stranded.

Kendrick started the fifth with a 4-1 lead. Dan Ortmeier hit for the pitcher Pat Misch to start the inning and was hit by a pitch. Kendrick set down the next three, striking out Lewis and getting Ray Durham on a fly ball to left before he struck out Winn to end the frame.

Kendrick threw a 1-2-3 sixth.

Castillo and Burriss started the seventh with back-to-back singles. It put men on first and second with nobody out for the pitcher’s spot and switch-hitter Eugenio Velez hit for reliever Keiichi Yabu. Madson came in to pitch to him and Velez singled into center to load the bases. Madson struck Lewis out swinging at a 1-2 pitch for the first out. Durham singled into right and Castillo and Burriss both scored to cut the Phillies’ lead to 4-3. Velez went to second. Winn singled off the glove of Feliz and into left, loading the bases for Molina with one out. Madson got ahead of Molina 0-2 before Molina reached out for a pitch way low and outside and hit a slow grounder to short. Bruntlett had to go to first for the second out as Velez scored to tie the game at 4-4. With men on second and third and two, Madson struck Rowand out to end the frame.

Gordon started the eighth. Bowker led off with a single and went to second on a curve ball in the dirt that Coste couldn’t find with Castillo at the plate. Gordon was charged with a wild pitch. With Castillo still at the plate Coste couldn’t handle another pitch from Gordon, this one low and outside, and Bowker went to third with nobody out. Gordon struck Castillo out for the first out. Burriss was next and hit a ground ball back to Gordon. Gordon did a great job, chasing Bowker back to third and then tossing to Feliz who tagged him out. Flash hurt something on the play, but stayed in the game. Velez grounded to short to end the frame.

Miserable inning for Coste, but Gordon worked around it.

Lidge started the ninth for the Phils with the game tied at 4-4 after having pitched an inning the night before. He got ahead of Lewis 0-2 before Lewis singled into right. Brian Bocock hit for the pitcher Tyler Walker and bunted Lewis to second. Winn hit a slow ground ball to first for the second out and Lewis went to third. Molina flew to right to set the Giants down.

I was surprised to see Lidge enter in a tie game. Other choices were Durbin, who threw 36 pitches on Wednesday and probably wasn’t available, Seanez, who threw eight and probably was, and JC Romero who would have been pitching in his fourth game in four days.

Romero came on to pitch the tenth. Rowand hit his first pitch out to center to put the Giants up 5-4. Bowker followed with a single, but Castillo hit into a double-play. Burriss singled and stole second before Velez walked to put men on first and second with two down. Romero struck out Lewis to end the frame.

Manuel didn’t have a good game and Burrell bailed him out. Romero pitching for the fourth day in a row and giving up the go-ahead home run in the tenth to a righty isn’t what you’re looking for. Unless they were not available I think you have to let Seanez or even Condrey pitch.

The Phillies should stop using Romero in the way they have been. The risk of injury seems high and his loss would be a huge problem given the lack of lefties. If you hear them say anything like, “Romero is a big, strong kid and we really know his arm” it’s time to head for the hills.

Bad day for the pen. Phils’ relievers went four innings and allowed two runs on eight hits and a walk. Madson threw 19 pitches, Gordon 22, Romero 20, Lidge 14. Romero cannot pitch five days in a row. Gordon was pitching for the second straight day, so he’s probably out tonight even if he is not injured from the play on the comebacker. Lidge would be going three days in a row if he goes tonight. Phils need a long outing from Myers.

The Phillies’ lineup against lefty Pat Misch went (1) Victorino (2) Werth (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Feliz (7) Coste (8) Bruntlett. Jenkins on the bench against the lefty with Victorino in center and Werth in right. Coste catches Kendrick. Interesting decision tonight for Manuel in center and right with a righy on the mound for the Giants. I assume Jenkins will play right, but I think we might see Victorino in center with Werth on the bench. Werth is 2-for-his-last-20.

Werth singled with one out in the first and stole second before Utley homered down the line in right, putting the Phils up 2-0. Howard and Burrell went down to end the inning.

Feliz started the second with a single and Coste struck out behind him for the first out. Bruntlett drew a walk, moving Feliz to second. Kendrick tried to bunt and failed, striking out for the second out. Victorino flew to right to end the inning.

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

Burrell walked to start the fourth and Feliz followed and hit the first pitch of his at-bat out down the line in right, putting the Phils up 4-1. Coste flew to left for the first out before Bruntlett bunted for a single. Madson bunted him to second for the second out, but Victorino popped to third to end the inning.

Utley walked with one out in the fifth, but Howard and Burrell went down behind him.

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

With the score tied at 4-4 in the seventh, Dobbs hit for Madson to start the inning and flew to right. Victorino followed with a single and stole second with Werth at the plate. Werth flew to right for the second out, deep enough for Victorino to go to third. Utley was walked intentionally and lefty Jack Traschner came in to pitch to Howard and struck him out to end the inning. San Francisco would still rather pitch to Howard than Utley even after Howard beat them the night before.

After Howard’s strikeout he was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts. Had me wondering if I was a little premature with yesterday’s headline.

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

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the ninth. Jenkins hit for Lidge against the righty Merkin Valdez and flew to center for the second out.

Werth led off the tenth against Giants’ closer Brian Wilson. Werth got ahead 3-0 but Wilson threw three straight fastballs and struck him out swinging. Utley looped the first pitch of his at-bat into right-center field, bringing up Howard as the winning run. Howard struck out looking at a 2-2 pitch and was ejected as he walked away from the plate complaining. The pitch that Howard struck out on was most definitely a strike. Burrell got ahead 3-0 and Wilson threw two fastballs past him. He didn’t throw three. The 3-2 pitch was a little outside, but Burrell hammered it out to left to give the Phils a 6-4 win.

Victorino was 1-for-5 with a stolen base.

Werth 1-for-5 with a stolen base.

Utley 2-for-3 with a home run and two walks.

Howard 0-for-5 with three strikeouts.

Burrell 1-for-4 with a walk and a game-winning homer.

Feliz 2-for-4 with a two-run homer against his former team.

Coste 0-for-4 and a bad night behind the plate.

Bruntlett 1-for-3 with a walk.

Brett Myers (2-2, 5.11) faces righty Matt Cain (1-2, 4.41) tonight. Cain got bombed by the Cardinals for nine runs in 3 2/3 innings on April 18. In his two starts since he’s allowed one run on nine hits in 12 1/3 innings. Opponents are hitting just .248 against him for the year, righties .233. He has walked way too many, 23 in 32 2/3 innings. The Phillies scored seven runs in three innings against him the only time they faces him last year, which was on May 3. Myers has allowed ten runs in 12 innings over his last two starts. Over his last five starts he’s allowed ten home runs in 32 innings. He didn’t make a start against the Giants last year but threw two scoreless innings in relief.


Good news for Phillies fans as Howard’s lease on 0-for-4 with two strikeouts appears to have been month-to-month

The bad news would be if he had decided to sublet to Pat Burrell, but the early results are encouraging.

Ryan Howard had a miserable April, but April is over. Last night after driving in the Phils’ first run with an RBI-double in the third, Howard blasted a mammoth shot out to right in the bottom of the eighth that proved to be the game winner for the Phils.

The Phillies only scored three runs on the night, but thanks to a nice outing by Eaton and three hitless, shutout innings from the amazing Phillies bullpen, three was enough.

The Phillies beat the San Diego Padres last night, winning 3-2 to improve to 16-13 on the season. The Phils take the series two games to one. For the second time in seven games the Phils get a win in a game where they scored three runs, so a word of thanks to the pitching, and the bullpen especially, is in order. Last year the Phils were 4-16 in games when they scored three runs and 4-41 in games where they scored less than four runs. So far this year they’re 2-2 in games where they score three runs and 2-9 in games where they score less than four.

The Phillies start the day in first place in the NL East, a half game ahead of the Marlins and the Mets.

Eaton got the start for the Phillies against his former team and went six innings, allowing two runs on five hits and two walks. Just one of the hits went for extra-bases, a home run. He struck out two. Eaton was hit hard early but pitched better as the game went on.

Tad Iguchi singled to left with one out in the first and Adrian Gonzalez followed with a home run to right. 2-0. Eaton got the next two.

Jim Edmonds singled with one out in the second. Josh Bard smashed a line drive to third for the second out. Pitcher Randy Wolf hammered a ball to deep right, but Werth caught it with a jump on the warning track to end the frame.

Brian Giles started the third with a walk and Iguchi moved him to second with a single. Gonzalez hit a line drive to second that Utley caught and glove-hand flipped to second to double Giles off. Kevin Kouzmanoff followed with a single that sent Iguchi to second with two outs. Khalil Greene swung at a 3-2 pitch low and outside and lined to first on a nice jumping play by Howard to leave both runners stranded.

Edmonds walked with one out in the fourth and the game tied at 2-2, but Eaton got the next two.

Eaton threw a 1-2-3 fifth and a 1-2-3 sixth. Nice play by Bruntlett to take a hit away from Giles on a ball up the middle for the first out of the fifth.

Madson started the seventh and got the first two before lefty Paul McAnulty hit for Wolf. McAnulty walked on four pitches and Manuel called on Romero to pitch to the lefty Giles. Third straight day for Romero after throwing 23 pitches on Wednesday. He struck Giles out swinging at a 3-2 pitch.

Gordon pitched a 1-2-3 eighth.

Lidge started the ninth up 3-2 in his first appearance since Sunday. He got Greene on a fly ball to center, struck out pinch-hitter Tony Clark and got Edmonds on a ground ball to short to end the game.

Three scoreless innings, one walk for the bullpen. Madson threw 13 pitches, Romero seven, Gordon nine, Lidge 12. Phils should try hard to keep Romero out of tonight’s game. The pen allowed two runs in the three-game set, which came on a home run against Madson with the Phils up 7-2 in the ninth in game one of the series.

The Phillies’ lineup against lefty Randy Wolf went (1) Victorino (2) Werth (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Feliz (7) Bruntlett (8) Ruiz. Victorino gets the start in center. He should start again tonight with another lefty on the mound of the Giants and Jenkins, presumably, again on the bench. Ruiz catches Eaton.

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

Burrell singled with one out in the second. Feliz popped to short for the second out before Bruntlett moved Burrell to second with a single. Ruiz walked to load the bases, but Eaton struck out looking at a 2-2 pitch.

Victorino doubled to start the third, but Werth and Utley both struck out behind him. Howard doubled to left-center to score Victorino, getting the Phils on the board at 2-1. Burrell followed with another double and Howard scored. 2-2. Feliz flew to left for the third out.

Ruiz walked with one out in the fourth. Eaton tried to bunt him to second, but Bard took the bunt and threw to second to force Ruiz for the second out with Eaton safe at first. Victorino walked before Werth struck out again, ending the inning.

Utley singled to start the fifth, but Howard, Burrell and Feliz struck out behind him.

With two outs in the sixth Taguchi hit for Eaton and was robbed of yet another hit by a fantastic defensive play, this one by Greene at short. Taguchi has been victimized by a ton of great defense and he’s got a .205 batting average to prove it.

Victorino walked to start the seventh and was running on the pitch as Werth lined to center. Victorino couldn’t get back in time and was doubled-off. Utley struck out for the third out.

Howard led off the eighth and got ahead 2-0 before he hit a long home run to right, putting the Phils up 3-2. Burrell, Feliz and Bruntlett went down behind him.

Victorino was 1-for-2 with a double and two walks. He was 1-for-4 in the series and is hitting 235/316/294.

Werth was 0-for-4, struck out twice and left four men on base. 1-for-11 with a triple in the series and 0-for-his-last-7 with five strikeouts. 1-for-his-last-15 has him at 265/354/530 on the year.

Utley was 1-for-4 and struck out three times. 4-for-12 with a double and a home run in the series. 357/424/748.

Howard was 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and two RBI. 3-for-11 in the series and 184/303/388 on the year.

Burrell was 2-for-4 with a double. 2-for-10 in the series. 333/454/677.

Feliz was 0-for-4 and left three men on base. 2-for-11 with a double in the series. 200/255/347.

Bruntlett was 1-for-4 and struck out twice. 3-for-10 with two walks in the series. 228/282/278.

Ruiz 0-for-1 and walked twice. 2-for-5 with a big double in the series. 203/276/261.

Jenkins was 4-for-7 in the series. 265/307/349.

Taguchi was 0-for-1 in the series and is hitting 205/244/256 on the season.

Dobbs was 1-for-2 with a double in the series. 333/400/556.

Coste was 1-for-4 in the series. He’s hitting 350/435/600.

Kyle Kendrick (2-2, 5.15) faces lefty Patrick Misch (0-0, 3.00) tonight as the Phils play the first of three with San Francisco. Misch appeared in 18 games for the Giants last season, including four starts. Overall in ’07 he went 0-4 with a 4.24 ERA and a 1.46 ratio. Righties hit .316 against him and lefties just .238. He’s made just one appearance in ’08 for the Giants, which came in long relief against the Reds on Sunday. After Zito got bombed and exited after just three innings, Misch came on to toss six innings in which he allowed two runs on five hits and a walk. Kendrick’s numbers are pretty bad on the year and he’s actually pitched worse than his numbers look at first glance as seven of the 22 runs he’s allowed have been unearned. Lefties are hitting .356 against him after hitting .321 against him last year. He didn’t face the Giants last season.


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