After dropping two straight one-run games to the Reds, the Phillies won one last night, plating a run in the bottom of the eleventh to win 4-3 and earn a split in the four-game set.
The game was expected to be a pitcher’s duel between Hamels and Cincinnati’s Johnny Cueto. Both pitched okay on a soggy, rain-soaked night, but both saw their pitch count climb early and both were gone by the time the seventh inning rolled around. The Phillies did get outstanding pitching in the game, but it came from their bullpen. Hamels left after six and after he left, five Phillie relievers combined to throw five shutout innings without allowing a hit.
Three of the first four Cincinnati batters reached in the top of the first as the Reds jumped out to an early 1-0 lead. In the fifth, a ball hit hard to short went for a single as Martinez couldn’t handle it and Todd Frazier followed that with a two-run double that extended the Cincinnati lead to 3-0. The Phils got two runs in the bottom of the sixth on a pair of sac flies, then tied things up at 3-3 in the eighth when singles by Brown, Mayberry and Kratz loaded the bases for a sac fly by Rollins. Mayberry chopped a single into left with one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the eleventh.
The Phillies are 58-67 on the year after beating the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 in 11 innings last night. The teams split the four-game set. The Phillies have pulled ahead of the Mets and into third place in the NL East. They’re 19 1/2 games out of first in the division.
Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing three runs on six hits and three walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out four.
The Phillies have won four games in a row that Hamels has started and scored 15 runs in those games (3.75 per game).
Zack Cozart and Drew Stubbs singled back-to-back to start the top of the first. It brought Jay Bruce to the plate and Hamels struck him out swinging 1-2 for the first out. Hamels walked Ryan Ludwick on four pitches, loading the bases for Todd Frazier. Frazier hit a ground ball to third, taken by a charging Frandsen. He might have had Cozart at the plate with a good throw, but went to first for the second out instead. Cozart scored and it was 1-0 with men on first and second for Miguel Cairo. Cairo lined a ball towards short. Martinez made a very nice play, diving to his left to field it and then throwing to first in time to get Cairo.
Hamels threw 34 pitches in the inning.
Hamels got Wilson Valdez, Ryan Hanigan and pitcher Johnny Cueto in order in the second.
He set them down in order again in the third. He was at just 53 pitches after needing just 19 to set down six in a row in innings two and three.
Cairo singled with two outs in the fourth. Hamels struck Valdez out swinging to leave him at first.
Hanigan walked to start the fourth. Cueto tried to bunt him to second, but popped it up to Kratz in foul territory for the first out. Cozart struck out and Stubbs flew to left to end the frame.
Bruce and Ludwick singled back-to-back to start the sixth, putting runners on first and second with nobody out. Frazier was next and pounded a ball to center, over the head of Nix and off the base of the wall. Both runners scored, putting the Reds up 2-0. Nix didn’t handle the ball as it came off the wall for an error that allowed Frazier to move up to third with nobody out. Hamels got Cairo on a ball he handled himself for the first out. He struck Valdez out for the second before walking Hanigan intentionally to pitch to the pitcher. Cueto grounded to Hamels as well to leave Frazier at third.
Two misplays in the inning behind Hamels and Hamels does well to limit the damage to two runs after the Reds put a runner on third with nobody out.
Nix’s error allows Frazier to take third with nobody out. Ludwick’s ball was hit hard, but Martinez had a chance to make the play. He didn’t get in front of the ball, swiping at instead and deflecting it as it went passed. It would have been a good play to field the ball, but if he had it likely would have been a double-play that changed the inning.
Rosenberg threw a 1-2-3 seventh with the game tied at 2-2.
Great outing for Rosenberg, who was pitching on one day of rest but has thrown three of the last four days. He’s gone 1 2/3 scoreless innings over his last three outings after throwing to a 12.91 ERA over his first eight.
Phillippe Aumont made his debut in the eighth with the score still tied. Ludwick was the first hitter he faced and Aumont got ahead of him 0-2 on two straight swinging strikes before throwing three balls in a row. Ludwick grounded to short 3-2 on a diving play by Rollins for the first out. Frazier flew to center for the second before Cairo walked, but Aumont got Valdez on a ground ball Aumont handled himself to end the frame.
I would be absolutely thrilled if Aumont can help the Phillies. That said, I’m pretty worried about how likely that is. He’s had an enormous problem with walks in the minors, walking 4.99 batters per nine over his minor league career. At Triple-A this year he has walked 34 in 44 1/3 innings (6.9 per nine). There’s close to no chance he can be successful without cutting that number down enormously. One walk in one inning so far. He got a bunch of help from a very nice play by Rollins for the first out last night.
Papelbon started the ninth in a tie game. Coming into the game, opponents were hitting 406/472/719 against him for the year in tie games. He walked Hanigan to start the inning and pitcher Mike Leake ran for Hanigan at first. Lefty Xavier Paul hit for the pitcher Sam Demel and bunted Leake to second with the first out. Cozart flew to Mayberry for the second and Papelbon struck Stubbs out swinging 0-2 to leave Leake stranded.
Better results in a tie game for Papelbon. He’s allowed one runs in 12 1/3 innings over his last 12 appearances while striking out 14.
Horst struck out Bruce and Ludwick in a 1-2-3 tenth.
Back with the team after the birth of his son, Horst continues to give the Phillies fantastic work out of the bullpen, dropping his ERA to 1.00 after 18 innings. In his last four appearances he has struck out nine in six scoreless innings. Hasn’t allowed a home run this season. Has walked seven in 18 innings, which is too many.
Valdes set the Reds down in order in the eleventh. Righty Chris Heisey hit for Valdez and grounded to second for the second out.
Valdes was pitching for the second straight day. He has a 1.23 ERA in eight August appearances and an 0.77 ratio for the year.
Five scoreless innings for the pen in the game in which they allow two walks and no hits while striking out four. Everyone was really good, perhaps most interestingly Rosenberg throwing a 1-2-3 seventh and Aumont making his debut in a big spot in the eighth.
Valdes has thrown two straight days and threw eight pitches in the game. Aumont threw 18. Everyone else was under 15.
The Phillies lineup against righty Johnny Cueto went (1) Pierre (2) Frandsen (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Brown (6) Nix (7) Kratz (8) Martinez. Rollins on the bench with Martinez at short. Pierre leads off. Mayberry on the bench with the lefty Nix starting in center for the third time this season. Kratz catches with the lefty Schneider on the bench. Four lefties in a row for the Phils three through six in the order.
The Phils were down 1-0 when they went in order in the bottom of the first.
Nix and Kratz singled back-to-back with two outs in the second. Martinez had a good at-bat, but popped up to first to leave them both stranded in the ninth pitch of his at-bat.
Cueto had thrown 42 pitches through two innings. He had the option of pitching around Martinez to face Hamels, raising an interesting question about which of them is the better hitter. Hamels 168/196/202 in 490 plate appearances. Martinez 187/247/276 in 298. So Martinez takes it and it isn’t real close. Hamels was out-OPSing Martinez coming into the game for 2012 — .559 to .461.
Pierre walked with one out in the third and Frandsen was hit by a pitch behind him. Utley followed with a single to center. Pierre tried to score and was thrown out at the plate. Howard walked to load the bases for Brown, but Cueto struck Brown out swinging 2-2 to leave them loaded.
Would have been better not to get thrown out at the plate, but the Reds got a great throw from Stubbs and a nice block of the plate from Hanigan to get the out. Pierre was also likely slowed a little by the very wet base paths. Even given that out Cueto was at 68 pitches after three innings. Would have been nice to make him throw some more.
The Phillies went in order in the fourth.
Hamels singled to right to start the fifth and Pierre bunted him to second with the first out. Hamels took third on a balk before Cueto struck Frandsen out swinging 2-2 for the second out. Utley lined to right to leave Hamels at third.
No run for the Phils after putting Hamels on third with one out. Frandsen can’t put the ball in play, striking out for the second out.
The Phillies were down 3-0 when Howard started the bottom of the sixth with a walk. Brown was next and doubled to left, moving Howard up to third. Righty Jose Arredondo came in to face Nix and Nix flew to right, deep enough for both runners to move up. Howard scored to make it 3-1 with one out and Brown on third. Kratz was next and flew to left. Brown tagged and scored. 3-2. Rollins hit for Martinez, who had failed to handle the hard ground ball by Ludwick in the two-run top of the inning, and went down on a ground ball handled by the catcher Hanigan.
Another extra-base hit for Brown, his third in two games. Howard is really slow, but did a nice job to tag and score on Nix’s ball to right. Likewise, if Brown doesn’t take third on Nix’s ball he can’t score on Kratz’s.
Polanco hit for Rosenberg and grounded to third for the first out in the seventh. Pierre grounded to second before Frandsen drew a walk. Lefty Sean Marshall came in to pitch to Utley and struck him out to leave Frandsen at first.
Brown singled to center off of Marshall with one out in the eighth. Mayberry hit for Nix. Righty Sam LeCure came in to pitch to Mayberry and Mayberry moved Brown up to second with a single into center. Kratz followed that with a single to left that loaded the bases for Rollins. Rollins his a fly ball to left. Brown tagged from third and slid in just safe ahead of the throw from Ludwick, tying the game at 3-3. Wigginton hit for Aumont and struck out swinging to leave the runners at first and second.
Mayberry would win the game with a single in the bottom of the eleventh, but also had a big hit in the eighth-inning rally that tied the game.
Righty JJ Hoover started the ninth for the Reds. Pierre led off with a walk. Frandsen followed with a bunt. Cairo fielded and Frandsen stopped in the middle of the base path on the way to first. Cairo swiped at him while taking a look at Pierre, but Frandsen dodged the tag and was safe at first, putting men on first and second for Utley with nobody out. Utley flew to center for the first out. Howard hit a ball in-between first and second that a diving Cairo gloved, but dropped trying to transfer to his glove. Howard had a single and the bases were loaded for Brown with one out. Brown grounded into a double-play to turn the Phillies away.
Ew. Utley can’t move the runners up and Brown hits into a huge double-play when the Phillies could have won the game with a different kind of out.
The Phillies left another army on the bases in the tenth. Kratz singled off of Hoover with one out and moved to third when Rollins followed with a double. Schneider hit for Horst and grounded to third for the second out with the runners holding. Pierre popped to third to end the inning.
Nothing for the Phils after putting runners on second and third with one out. Schneider grounds to third for the first out with Kratz holding third.
Frandsen singled to center off of righty Alfredo Simon to start the eleventh. Frandsen moved to third on a double by Utley and Howard was walked intentionally, again loading the bases for Brown. Brown grounded to first with Cairo fielding and throwing home for the force out Frandsen. Mayberry was next with the bases still loaded and he chopped a ball through the left side of the infield and into left, scoring Utley to give the Phils a 4-3 win.
Second big hit of the game for Mayberry in three at-bats.
Brown had three at-bats in the game with the bases loaded. None of them went well. He struck out swinging with the bases loaded to end the third. With a chance to win the game in the ninth with one out and the bases loaded, he grounded into a double-play. With one out in the eleventh and the bases loaded again he grounded to first.
Pierre was 0-for-3 and walked twice. He was 0-for-11 with two walks in the series. 256/302/314 over his last 136 plate appearances. 301/343/366 for the year.
Frandsen 1-for-3 with a walk. Struck out with a runner on third for the second out in the fifth. 5-for-8 in the series with a walk and a triple. 357/400/440 on the year in 91 plate appearances.
Utley 2-for-6 with a double. 5-for-18 with two doubles in the series. 250/354/464 for the year.
Howard 1-for-3 with three walks and struck out twice. 4-for-14 with a home run and five walks in the series. 250/335/464 on the year. 322/394/593 over his last 66 plate appearances.
Brown was 2-for-6 with a double and left nine men on base. Had some trouble in his at-bats (three of ‘em) with the bases loaded. 6-for-17 in the series with a walk, three doubles and a home run. 286/362/405 for the year.
Nix 1-for-2 with an RBI and an error in center that required an impressive effort from Hamels not to cost the Phils a run. 1-for-5 in the series. 253/323/410 for the year. 178/240/200 over his last 50 plate appearances.
Kratz was 3-for-4 to raise his average to .319. He started three of the four games in the series and went 6-for-10 with a walk, a double and a home run. 319/383/725 on the year in 81 plate appearances. Across both leagues there are 445 players with at least 75 plate appearances for the year. His .725 slugging percentage is best among those players by a whole lot. Justin Ruggiano is second at .615.
Martinez 0-for-2 with a big no-play on the Ludwick single that helped the Reds score two runs in the sixth. 0-for-2 in the series. 148/200/246 in 66 plate appearances for the year. Rollins was 1-for-2 with a double and an RBI in the game. 4-for-16 with three doubles in the series.
Mayberry was 2-for-3 with a game-winning single. 5-for-15 with a home run in the series and 238/279/399 for the year.
Kendrick (6-9, 4.20) faces righty Edwin Jackson (7-8, 3.69) tonight as the Phils faced the Nats. Kendrick has thrown 15 scoreless innings over his last starts, allowing eight hits and one walk while striking out 13. He has a 1.93 ERA over his 12 appearances since the end of June, five of which have been starts. Jackson’s hit rate is the best of his career — he has allowed just 124 in 144 innings and opponents are hitting just .232 against him (righties .218 and lefties .245). He’s coming off one of his best starts of the year, having allowed two runs on two hits and a walk over seven innings while striking out 11 Mets his last time out.