It took a day, but the Phillies got the spark they were looking for from Jimmy Rollins. If J-Roll’s first eight at-bats after returning from the DL didn’t wow a whole lot of folks his ninth sure did. With the Phils down a run in the ninth, Rollins hammered a 1-1 offering from Kerry Wood out to right for a two-run homer that took Phils from down 6-5 to 7-6 winners.
Rollins wasn’t the only Phillie who hit last night. Jayson Werth, in a miserable slump, went 3-for-3 with a double, a walk and a home run. Brian Schneider hit his first long ball of the year to tie the game in the seventh and delivered a key walk to start the ninth-inning rally.
The Phils have won five of their last seven games and are 37-32 on the year after a 7-6 win over Cleveland last night. The Phils are in third place in the NL East and trail the Braves by three games.
Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and went four innings, allowing five runs on six hits and two walks. Only four of the runs were earned. Five of the hits went for extra-bases, three doubles and two home runs. He struck out one.
Trevor Crowe led off the game with a double to right. Shin-Soo Choo was next and he hit an 0-2 pitch out to right, putting Cleveland up 2-0. Carlos Santana followed with a walk, but Kendrick got the next three.
The lefty Choo gets Kendrick, who was blasted by lefties early in the season but had been getting a lot better recently.
Kendrick set Cleveland down in order in the second with the lead cut to 2-1.
It was 2-2 when he started the third. Crowe led off with another double and moved to third on a fly ball to center from Choo. Santana hit a fly ball to center deep enough for Crowe to tag and score (3-2) before Kendrick got Austin Kearns to line to Utley to end the frame.
Russell Branyan started the fourth with an infield single. Jhonny Peralta flew to left for the first out before a Luis Valbuena ground out moved Branyan to second. Kendrick walked righty Jason Donald intentionally to get to the pitcher Jake Westbrook with two out and men on first and second. Kendrick struck him out looking to end the inning.
Really not a fan of walking the eight hitter to get to the pitcher. Especially righty on righty. Jason Donald came into the game on-basing .210 against right-handed pitching. Get him out and let the pitcher lead off the fifth.
The Phils were up 4-3 when Kendrick started the fifth. Crowe led off and hit a ball to Utley that Utley didn’t handle for an error. Choo followed that with his second home run of the game, putting Cleveland back on top at 5-4. Santana was next and he doubled. That was all for Kendrick. Herndon came in to pitch to the righty Kearns and got him on a ground ball to third with Santana holding second. Herndon struck Branyan out swinging for the second out. Peralta followed that with a single to left, but Ibanez made a nice throw home and Schneider applied the tag to get Santana and set Cleveland down.
Valbuena started the sixth with a double to right and Donald bunted him to third. Lefty Travis Hafner hit for the pitcher Westbrook and Mike Zagurski came in to pitch to him. Zagurski got Hafner on a ground ball to third with Valbuena holding for the second out and struck out Crowe to end the inning.
Great start to the year for Zagurski.
He walked Choo to start the seventh, but Schneider threw Choo out stealing for the first out. Choo was safe, but whatever. Zagurski got Santana on a fly ball to center before Baez came in to pitch to the righty Kearns and got him on a ground ball to second to end the frame.
Durbin pitched the eighth with the score tied at 5-5. Branyan led off with a single, but Durbin got the next three behind him.
Durbin was back to start the ninth. Anderson Hernandez bunted for a single to start the inning and Durbin hurt his right hamstring going after the ball. He’s since hit the DL with Figeuroa called back up. Romero came in to pitch to the switch-hitter Crowe and Crowe singled softly to right, sending Hernandez to third. Choo was next and hit a ball back to Romero. Romero went to third and Polanco threw home where Schneider tagged out Hernandez for the first out. Crowe wound up at third and Choo at second. Santana was next and hit a ball hard to Rollins. Rollins fielded, but threw home wildly for an error as Crowe scored to put Cleveland up 6-5. Romero walked the righty Kearns intentionally to load the bases for Branyan, but Branyan lined into a double-play with Utley catching and throwing to first to double-off Kearns and end the frame.
Herndon and Zagurski each threw 16 pitches in the game. Durbin 15, Romero 14 and Baez five. Romero was pitching for the second straight day.
The Phillies lineup against righty Jake Westbrook went (1) Rollins (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Ibanez (7) Victorino (8) Schneider. Schneider catches with Ruiz on the DL. Victorino continues to hit seventh.
Polanco and Utley singled back-to-back with one out in the first and the Phils down 2-0. It put men on first and third for Howard, but Howard hit into a double-play with Polanco scoring before it was over to cut the lead to 2-1.
Werth started the second with a home run to right that tied the game at 2-2. Victorino singled with one out, but was caught stealing before Schneider flew to center to end the inning.
The Phils went in order in the third with the Indians up 3-2.
Howard singled with one out in the fourth and moved to third when Werth followed with a double. Ibanez was next and he doubled into right, scoring both runners and putting the Phils on top at 4-3. Ibanez went to third on a wild pitch before Victorino lined to short for the second out. Schneider was walked intentionally to put men on first and third for Kendrick. Kendrick grounded to third to leave both men stranded.
The Phils went in order in the fifth with Cleveland up 5-4.
Howard and Werth singled back-to-back to start the sixth. It put men on first and second for Ibanez and Ibanez hit into a double-play. Victorino followed with a walk that put men on first and third for Schneider. The Cleveland pitcher Tony Sipp threw to first and Victorino was caught between first and second. A flurry of throws followed and Howard moved for home. The first baseman Branyan threw home and Howard was tagged out to end the inning.
The Phils were still down 5-4 when they hit in the seventh. Schneider led off with a home run, his first of the year, tying the game at 5-5. The Phils went in order after that. With righty Frank Hermann on the mound for Cleveland, Gload hit for Baez and flew to center for the first out.
Utley walked to start the eighth with the score still tied. Howard was next and hit a ground ball that Branyan fielded at first. He threw to second to force Utley for the first out. Werth followed with a walk that put men on first and second. Ibanez hit a ground ball to first and Werth was forced at second for the second out. With men on first and third, Victorino flew to left to end the inning.
The Phils were down 6-5 when the hit in the ninth against righty Kerry Wood. Schneider led off with a walk and Valdez ran for him at first. Francisco hit for Romero and hit a ground ball to short for the first out that moved Valdez to second. It brought Rollins to the plate and J-Roll lined a 1-1 pitch out to right to give the Phils a 7-6 win.
Rollins was 1-for-5 with a big two-run homer.
Utley 1-for-3 with a walk.
Howard 2-for-4 with two singles.
Werth was 3-for-3 with a double, a home run and a walk. He’s still on base to hit 59 doubles for the year.
Ibanez 1-for-4 with a double and two RBI.
Victorino 1-for-3 with a walk.
Schneider was 1-for-2 with his first home run of the year and two walks. He played a big role offensively in the game for the Phils, tying the game with the homer in the seventh and starting the ninth with a walk.
Blanton (2-5, 6.96) faces righty Fausto Carmona (6-5, 3.31) this afternoon. Carmona has allowed more than three earned runs in just two of 14 starts this season. Blanton has been terrible, but held the Twins to three runs over six innings his last time out.