No need to argue about whether Chase Utley is injured or not any more. Utley injured his right thumb sliding into second base in the fourth inning of last night’s game. In the ninth he was removed for a pinch-hitter after having trouble gripping the bat.
The article linked above says that Utley will have an MRI today.
Not much else went well in the game for the Phils, either. Kendrick was fantastic early, but the Reds got to him in the fourth and he wound up charged with six runs over 6 1/3 innings. Ibanez hit a two-run homer in the ninth with the Phils way behind to make the game look closer than it really was.
The Phillies are 40-34 on the year after losing to the Reds 7-3 last night in Cincinnati. They’re in third place in the NL East, 3 1/2 games behind the first-place Braves. They have won five of their last seven.
Kendrick got the start for the Phils and went 6 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on eight hits. Only five of the runs were earned. Four of the hits went for extra-bases, three doubles and a home run. He struck out four and didn’t walk a batter.
He didn’t allow a hit or a walk through the first three innings.
The fourth started with the game still scoreless. Brandon Phillips grounded to second for the first out before Orlando Cabrera lined a double to left. Cabrera tried to steal third but was thrown out by a wide margin for the second out. It cost the Reds a run, too, because Joey Votto was next and doubled to right. It brought up Scott Rolen with two down and a man on second and Rolen homered off of the foul pole in left to put the Reds up 2-0. Johnny Gomes lined to right to end the inning.
Kendrick came back with a 1-2-3 fifth.
The pitcher Johnny Cueto led off the sixth and hit a ground ball to second that Utley didn’t handle for an error. Phillips and Cabrera followed that with back-to-back singles that loaded the bases for Votto. Votto singled to right, moving everyone up a base and making it 3-0. Rolen hit a fly ball to center deep enough for Phillips to tag and score. 4-0. Gomes fouled out to Schneider for the third out.
Kendrick started the seventh with the lead cut to 4-1. Drew Stubbs led off with a single and came around to score when Ramon Hernandez followed with a double. 5-1. Cueto bunted Hernandez to third with the first out and Herndon took over for Kendrick to pitch to Phillips at the top of the Cincinnati order. Herndon got Phillips to pop to Utley with Hernandez holding for the second out, but Cabrera followed and lined a single to left to put the Reds up 6-1. Romero came in to pitch to the lefty Votto and Votto moved Cabrera to third with a single. Rolen was next and Romero walked him, loading the bases with two down. Gomes grounded to third to end the inning.
Righties Rolen and Gomes get chances against Romero and the Phils get away with it. Don’t let Romero’s 2.45 ERA fool you — he’s walked 13 batters in 14 2/3 innings. That’s too many. In the don’t-let-their-ERA-fool-you category, opponents are also hitting .352 against Herndon for the season.
Zagurski started the eighth and gave up a leadoff double to lefty Jay Bruce. Stubbs walked behind Bruce and Hernandez bunted the runners to second and third with the first out. Righty Chris Heisey hit for the pitcher Cueto and flew to center with Bruce scoring from third to make it 7-1. Stubbs went to third on a wild pitch before Zagurski struck out Phillips to leave both runners stranded.
Third appearance on the year for Zagurski and the first hit he’s allowed. He’s walked three in 3 1/3 innings.
Zagurski threw 26 pitches in the game. Herndon and Romero were each under ten.
The Phillies lineup against righty Johnny Cueto went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Ibanez (7) Schneider (8) Valdez. Polanco on the bench with a sore elbow. Victorino moves up to second in the lineup and Valdez plays third. Schneider catches with Ruiz on the DL.
Victorino singled with one out in the first and moved to second on a ground out by Utley. Howard lined to left to leave him stranded.
Werth started the second with a single. Ibanez was next and hit a ball to second. Werth was forced at second for the first out. Schneider followed and hit into a double-play to end the frame.
Valdez started the third with a walk and Kendrick bunted him to second. Rollins flew to left and Victorino popped to second to leave him stranded.
Second walk on the season for Valdez, who came into the game with 130 plate appearances.
Utley started the fourth with a single into center and was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double. He injured his right thumb sliding into second, but stayed in the game. Howard followed with a non-RBI double and Werth walked. Ibanez hit into a double-play to turn the Phillies away.
No run for the Phils on a double, a single and a walk.
Down 2-0, the Phillies went in order in the fifth.
And the sixth.
The Phils were down 4-0 when Howard led off the seventh with a triple. Werth grounded to third before Ibanez reached on an infield single on a ball hit slowly to third. Howard scored to cut the lead to 4-1. Schneider flew to center and Valdez grounded to short.
Down 6-1, the Phils went in order in the eighth. Gload hit for Romero to start the inning and popped to short.
It was 7-1 when they hit in the ninth. Castro hit for Utley and grounded to short for the first out. Howard went down on a ball fielded by the catcher for the second out before Werth singled to right. Werth took second without a throw before Ibanez homered to right to make it 7-3. With lefty Bill Bray on the mound for the Reds, righty Dane Sardinha hit for Schneider and struck out to end the game.
Rollins was 0-for-4. He’s 5-for-24 since coming off the DL.
Victorino 1-for-4. He’s 4-for-his-last-9 but hitting just .227 in June.
Utley was 1-for-3.
Howard was 2-for-4 with a double and a triple. 362/392/830 with five home runs over his last 51 plate appearances.
Werth 2-for-3 with a walk. He’s 2-for-his-last-12.
Ibanez was 2-for-4 with a three-run homer.
Schneider was 0-for-3.
Valdez 0-for-2 with a walk.
Joe Blanton (3-5, 6.53) faces righty Mike Leake (5-1, 2.92) tonight in game two of the series. Blanton still has a 6.53 ERA for the year, but has pitched pretty well in each of his last two starts. He’s allowed 13 home runs in 60 2/3 innings and at least one in eight starts in a row. His only start on the year in which he didn’t allow a home run came May 8 against the Braves. Leake doesn’t turn 23 until November and struggled in back-to-back starts, allowing ten runs on 20 hits and seven walks over 10 1/3 innings, before a better outing against the A’s his last time out. On Monday he held Oakland to a run over six innings.
Update: Utley and Polanco to the DL. Dobbs and Brian Bocock called up. Bocock has hit .179 with a .239 on-base percentage in 212 at-bats for the IronPigs this year.