The Phils shuffled their lineup around last night, but it was a tremendous pitching performance from Kyle Kendrick that got them a win for the first time in seven games. Kendrick tossed eight scoreless frames in which he held Oakland to four hits.
It wasn’t exactly an offensive explosion for the Phils. They came up empty on multiple chances to score, especially late in the game. Chase Utley did have a nice game, going 4-for-5 with a double and a triple. Utley came into the game 3-for-his-last-32.
The Phillies beat the Oakland A’s last night, winning 4-0 to improve to 43-36 on the season.
Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and went eight shutout innings, allowing four hits and a walk. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out four.
He walked Jack Cust with two outs in the first, but Eric Chavez flew to right for the third out.
He set the A’s down 1-2-3 in the second, third and fourth without striking out a batter.
With one out in the fifth and the Phils up 3-0, Jack Hannahan reached on a ground-rule double to left. Kurt Suzuki grounded to third and Carlos Gonzalez flew to center to end the inning with Hannahan left stranded.
He threw a 1-2-3 sixth.
Up 4-0 in the seventh, he struck out Cust and Chavez both swinging to start the inning. They were the first two strikeouts for Kendrick since he struck out Mark Ellis for the first out in the first inning. Bobby Crosby followed with a single, but Hannahan lined to short for the third out.
Kendrick returned for the eighth and Suzuki led off with a single. Gonzalez flew to center for the first out. Daric Barton was next and he moved Suzuki to second with a single. It brought up Ellis and Kendrick struck him out looking at a 1-2 pitch for the second out. Ryan Sweeney grounded back to Kendrick for the third out.
Romero pitched the ninth having thrown 19 pitches the night before. He walked the righty Crosby with two outs and Crosby took second without a throw, but Hannahan grounded back to Romero to end the game.
One scoreless inning from the pen as Romero bounces back nicely after giving up the home run on Tuesday. He threw 16 pitches. Still don’t love the idea of using him in the ninth with a four-run lead just cause he’s the Phillies only lefty. If the Phillies need to get a lefty out this afternoon (thinking Cust or Chavez) it might have to be Romero pitching for the third straight day.
The Phillies’ lineup against lefty Greg Smith went (1) Werth (2) Utley (3) Rollins (4) Burrell (5) Howard (6) Feliz (7) Victorino (8) Coste (9) Bruntlett. Really it did. Werth plays right and leads off with Rollins hitting third. Utley moves up from third to second. Burrell hits fourth against the lefty. Howard at DH and moves down to fifth against the lefty. Feliz moves up to sixth. Victorino, who came into the game hitting .225 against lefties on the season, moves down to seventh. Coste catches. Bruntlett plays first for the second time in his career and first time since 2005. Burrell was born to DH — it doesn’t make sense against a lefty given the corner outfield options, but it made sense on Tuesday. You would think you especially wouldn’t want Burrell in such a monstrous outfield. Bruntlett shouldn’t be playing first base ever.
Werth led off the first with a walk and moved to second when Utley blooped a single into right. Rollins popped to Ellis in short center field for the first out before Werth and Utley pulled off a double-steal with Burrell at the plate. Burrell flew to center and Werth tagged and came home. Gonzalez’s throw was strong and online, but Suzuki didn’t handle it on a bounce and Werth was safe. 1-0. Utley held second and was left stranded when Howard struck out.
The Phillies wouldn’t have scored without the double-steal.
1-2-3 in the second.
With two outs in the third, Utley doubled to right. Rollins was next and he hit a 2-2 pitch into right. Utley tried to score, but this time Suzuki caught the ball on a bounce and tagged Utley out for the third out.
Burrell started the fourth with a single. Howard struck out again before Feliz hit the first pitch of his at-bat off the wall in left for a triple. Even Burrell can score from first on a triple and the Phils led 2-0. Victorino followed with a walk that put men on first and third. Coste got behind in the count but managed to hit a 1-2 pitch into right deep enough for Feliz to tag and score without a throw and put the Phils up 3-0. Bruntlett popped to first for the third out.
Nice job by Coste with two strikes.
With one out in the fifth, Utley tripled. Rollins flew to right for the second out and Utley had to hold third. Burrell struck out to leave him stranded.
Rollins doesn’t bring the runner home from third with one out.
Victorino reached on a bunt single with two outs in the sixth. Righty Chad Gaudin came in to pitch to Coste and Coste looped a ball into shallow left-center that went in and out of the glove of a diving Gonzalez for a single. Victorino was able to score from first with two outs on the slow-developing play. 4-0. Bruntlett flew to right for the third out.
Werth walked to start the seventh and again Utley moved him to second with a single. Rollins flew to center, Burrell struck out and Howard lined to short to leave both runners stranded.
Feliz started the eighth with a single and went to third when Victorino reached on an error by Crosby. Victorino stole second before Coste reached on a dribbler back to the pitcher to load the bases. Bruntlett hit a ground ball to short and Crosby threw home to force Feliz for the first out. Werth struck out and Utley lined to short.
After putting men on first and second with nobody out in the seventh and being unable to score, the Phils loaded the bases with nobody out in the eighth and couldn’t push a run across.
Rollins walked to start the ninth. Jenkins, Howard and Feliz went down behind him. Jenkins entered the game in the bottom of the seventh when Burrell exited with the Phils up 4-0. If you DH Burrell you really don’t have to take him out of the game for defensive reasons (again, I don’t think it makes sense with a lefty on the mound cause Jenkins or Dobbs in the outfield against a lefty is probably no good).
Werth was 0-for-3 with two walks.
Utley 4-for-5 with a double and a triple.
Rollins 1-for-4 with a walk and left five men on base.
Burrell 1-for-3 with an RBI and two strikeouts.
Howard 0-for-5 with two strikeouts and five men left on base.
Feliz 2-for-5 with a triple and an RBI.
Victorino 1-for-3 with a walk.
Coste 2-for-3 with two RBI.
Bruntlett 0-for-4 and left five men on base.
Adam Eaton (2-5, 4.94) faces righty Rich Harden (4-0, 2.44) this afternoon. Harden has started ten games for Oakland this season and the A’s have won eight of them. He’s allowed more than three runs in just one of them. Righties are hitting just .159 against him and overall he’s struck out 72 in just 59 innings. Eaton was hammered his last time out, allowing six runs on 12 hits in just five innings against the Angels on Friday. He’s struck out just five in his last 17 2/3 innings.
Ed Wade has problems in Houston.