Tag: Mets

I’m not saying it’s that big a deal, I’m just saying I’d feel better if they would outscore the Nationals

The Phillies played their last game before the All-Star break on July 12 this year. Here’s a look at the NL East standings at the end of the day on July 12 as well as the number of runs scored and allowed per game and the difference between the two for each team:

  W L R/G RA/G Dif
PHI 48 38 5.35 4.79 0.56
FLA 46 44 4.61 4.76 -0.14
ATL 43 45 4.24 4.31 -0.07
NYM 42 45 4.31 4.69 -0.38
WAS 26 61 4.38 5.62 -1.24

And here’s what the teams in the division have done since the break:

  W L R/G RA/G Dif
PHI 34 22 4.55 3.71 0.84
ATL 32 23 4.91 3.56 1.35
FLA 30 24 5.30 4.89 0.41
WAS 24 32 4.73 5.23 -0.50
NYM 21 36 4.00 4.77 -0.77

The Phils still have the best record in the second half of the season. But the Braves have scored more runs than the Phils and allowed fewer. By a lot. Despite the fantastic run differential for the second-half it looks like there’s not much chance Atlanta is going to figure out a way to get into the playoffs — they are six games out in the chase for the Wild Card and trail the Phils by 7 1/2 in the division.

The Phillies are doing a great job of preventing runs in the second half, allowing more than a run per game less than they allowed in the first half of the year. What they aren’t doing a great job of is scoring runs. They are fourth in the division in both runs scored and runs scored per game since the All-Star break. One of the three teams ahead of them in both of those categories is the Nationals, and they aren’t even considered a World Series contender. It’s not quite as awful as it seems like it should be — the Nats are seventh in the NL in runs scored overall for the season and tied for fifth since the All-Star break.

Tyler Walker would like to pitch in the post-season. I would like that too.

JA Happ hopes he can start Friday in Atlanta.

Wake up stall

Given that the Phils and Mets scored the same number of runs last season, I thought I’d look for any area where the Phillies could improve. One is early in the game.

Here’s the runs scored for each of the teams in innings one through three, four through six and seven through nine:


Innings Runs
Per inning Runs
Per Inning
1 through 3 266 0.55 342 0.70
4 through 6 302 0.62 253 0.52
7 through 9 221 0.50 191 0.43

For each team the runs scored in innings one through nine does not equal 799. The Phillies scored ten runs in extra innings while the Mets scored thirteen.

In both the inning four through six and seven through nine categories, the Phillies outscored the Mets. For the season, after the third inning the Phils outscored the Mets 533 to 457.

The Phillies were actually better than the Mets in the second inning as well:


Inning Runs
Per inning Runs
Per Inning
Second 71 0.44 68 0.42

That means there must have been a big problem in the first and third innings. And there was:


Inning Runs
Per inning Runs
Per Inning
First 109 0.67 139 0.86
Third 86 0.53 135 0.83

The Mets clearly were getting out to a better start in ’08 in the first inning. Here’s at least part of the reason why:

First batter of the game

PHI 162 253 290 344 634
NYM 162 346 370 532 902

Rollins was miserable in the first plate appearance of the game in 2008. He got the first plate appearance in 126 of the 162 games and hit 242/278/342 in those plate appearances. Victorino and Werth were the only two players on the team to get more than ten plate appearances as the first Phillie hitter of the game — Victorino hit 429/429/571 and Werth hit 300/417/300. Taguchi went 1-for-8 in the eight games where he hit first for the Phils.

Jose Reyes, on the other hand, was a terror for the Mets as the first hitter of the game. He got the Mets going by hitting 340/365/529 in the 159 times he got the first plate appearance of the game for New York.

It’s a lot less clear what happened in the third inning, but for whatever reason there were a lot of Phillies that just didn’t hit in their plate appearances that came in the third. Burrell hit .130, Werth .104, Victorino .211 and Ruiz .160.

Also possible is that the Phillies’ problems in the first inning forced them to send their 7-8-9 hitters to the plate more often in the third inning while the Mets were sending the better hitters at the top of their order. Here are the Mets hitting splits in the third inning.

The Phillies signed Miguel Cairo to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training. He may be part of the competition to fill in at second if Utley isn’t ready for the start of the season.

Adam Eaton, who has made 49 starts for the Phillies over the past two season in which he’s thrown to a 6.06 ERA, suggests that the reason general managers might not be jumping all over the chance to trade for him is that he will be available without having to make a trade if the Phillies release him.

Bad news if you had Drew Naylor in your office Phillies opening day starter pool. Looks like the Phils may be going to go with that Hamels guy.

Rich Dubee suggests Kendrick is the favorite to win the fifth starter job in this article.

So you’re scared and you’re thinking that maybe we ain’t that young, or slugging .659, anymore

The Phillies outscored the Mets 892 to 804 in 2007, a difference of 88 runs. That difference disappeared completely in 2008 as both teams scored an identical 799 runs. Offense was down across the league last year, but the Mets seemed less bothered than most teams. They scored five fewer runs than they had the year before while the Phillies scored 93 fewer.

There were injuries for the Phillies, most notably to Jimmy Rollins. Let’s hope that was it. Let’s hope what was not it is that the idea that the Mets are built around a pair of young stars in Reyes and Wright while the Phillies are built around a pair of young stars in Utley and Howard just isn’t as true as we’d like it to be. All four are definitely stars, part of baseball’s elite, but some of them are younger than others. Utley is 30 already and Howard turns 30 in November. Reyes won’t be 26 till June and Wright turns 27 in December. Utley and Howard, and Rollins for that matter, who turns 31 in November, are all going to start to get worse sooner than the younger Mets stars. I’m not saying that it’s started already, I don’t think it has. But it will, and when you look at some pairings of Mets and Phillies players over the past three years there are some concerning trends that help shed some light on how the difference in runs scored closed so dramatically in ’08.

Here’s the runs created, as calculated by Baseball-Reference, for Rollins and Reyes over the past three seasons:


Rollins was hurt for a lot of 2008, which will mess up your runs created, but even when he wasn’t Reyes outhit him. Reyes hit 297/358/475 for the year while Rollins hit 277/349/437.

Here’s Utley and Wright:


After being outhit by Utley in 2006, Wright has been better in 2007 and 2008. It should also be noted that there were only four NL players whose runs created were better than the 130 that Utley put up in 2008 — Wright just happens to be one of them.

This one might be the most disturbing of all, comparing Howard and Delgado:


Carlos Delgado isn’t the offensive player that Ryan Howard is, let’s not get silly here. But the similarity in the amount of offense they produced in 2008 is alarming. Even more alarming than the fact suggestion that Delgado and Howard created a similar amount of offense in 2008 is how dramatically Howard’s output has dropped since 2006 — for 169 in ’06 to 113 in ’08.

Finally, this one isn’t a natural pairing at all, but Carlos Beltran produced more offense than Burrell consistently over the past three seasons and widened the gap in 2008:


The two were very close in 2007. Both created more runs in 2008 than they had the year before, but Beltran had greater improvement between the two seasons.

Race pace

In 2008, the NL East came down to a battle between the Phils and the Mets. There are a lot of reasons to think it will again in 2009. The chart below tracks the wins for each team as the season progressed:

Wins by Date, 2008

And here’s a review of how things looked on some key dates:

April 30: The Phillies end April at 15-13, tied with the 14-12 Mets for second place in the division. Both teams trail the 15-12 Marlins by half a game.

May 31: The Marlins still lead the NL East with a 31-23 mark. The Phils remain a half game back at 32-25, but the 27-27 Mets trail by four games.

June 17: Willie Randolph is fired by the 34-35 Mets. The Phils lead the division with the Fish in second, three games back. The Mets and the Braves are tied for third place, trailing by 6 1/2 games.

June 30: The Phils lead the NL with a 44-39 record, a half game ahead of the Marlins. After beating the Marlins on June 1 to go a half game up in the division, the Phils stay in first place the whole month. Their lead tops out at four games in the middle of the month. The Fish are back within half a game by the end of the month, but the Mets are under .500 at 40-42 in third place. New York trails the Phils by 3 1/2 games.

July 17: The Mets beat the Reds 10-8 to win their tenth straight game. The Mets and Phils end the day in a tie atop the NL East with identical 52-44 records.

July 31: The 59-49 Phils hold a one-game lead in the division. The Marlins have faded and are now in third place at 58-51, a game and a half back. The Mets, meanwhile, have surged past them and trail the Phils by a single game at 58-50.

The Mets and Phils came into a three-game set in New York July 22-24 tied for the division lead. The Phillies scored six times in the ninth to get a win in the opener, but the Mets won the next two games.

The Mets extended their lead in the division to two games with a win in St Louis, but dropped three of five to end the month while the Phils ran off five straight wins against the Braves and the Nats.

August 31: The back-and-forth month ends with the Mets atop the NL East by a game at 76-61. The Phils are a game off pace at 75-62. The Marlins are seven games out of first place.

The Phils controlled the early part of August, holding the lead in the division till the Mets tied it up on August 13. The Mets led every day but one until the end of the month, maxing out their lead at 2 1/2 games on August 21 and August 22.

September 1-3: The Phillies lost two of three to Washington start September. The Mets, meanwhile, swept a three-game set in Milwaukee and were suddenly three games ahead of the Phils.

September 10: After falling to the Marlins 7-3, the Phils drop to 79-67 on the year. They have 16 games left to play and trail the Mets by 3 1/2 games.

September 18: The Phillies beat the Braves 4-3 to win their seventh straight game. With the win they complete a three-game sweep of Atlanta, coming off the sweep of the Brewers in a four-game set. The Mets, meanwhile, dropped two of three to the Braves in New York on September 13 and 14 before splitting a four-game set with the Nats September 15-18.

The Phillies end the day a half game up in the NL East at 86-67. The have nine games left to play. The 85-67 Mets have ten games left.

September 19: The Phils fall to the Marlins in Florida, losing 14-8 behind a miserable start by Brett Myers. The Mets, meanwhile, take a half game lead in the division when they rally for four runs in the eighth inning to break a 5-5 tie in Atlanta.

It’s the last time that New York will lead the division in 2008, though. The Phils come back and take the next two from the Marlins while the Mets drop a pair of tight games to the Braves. The September 21 game in Atlanta features the Mets taking a 4-3 lead into the bottom of the eighth only to yield four runs. A two-run blast by Delgado in the top of the ninth gets New York to within a run, but they can’t tie the game.

The loss in combination with the Phillies win puts the Phils 1 1/2 games up after the day’s action on September 21 is over. New York has seven games to play and the 88-68 Phillies have six.

September 22: The Phils extend their lead to 2 1/2 games with the help of a 6-2 win over a decimated Braves team. JA Happ gave the Phils his second straight excellent start down the stretch and the Phils broke open a 2-2 tie with a four-run eighth inning that featured a three-run bomb from Burrell. The Mets, meanwhile, fall to the Cubs to drop their third straight.

The Phils had a chance to put it away then. But they didn’t. They dropped the next two with Atlanta.

Santana, Reyes and Wright led New York to a win over the Cubs on September 23 in New York, and the Mets trailed by just a game and a half as play started on the 24th. The Mets couldn’t capitalize on the Phils’ loss, though. They led Chicago 5-1 going into the top of the fifth, but Chicago tied the game with a four-run frame. Chicago took a 6-5 lead in the seventh before a bases loaded walk to Ramon Martinez in the bottom of the eighth forced in a run to tie the game at 6-6. It went to extra innings and a two-run homer by Aramis Ramirez off of Luis Ayala in the top of the tenth helped the Cubs put three on the board. Chicago won the game 9-6 and the Phils held a game and a half lead.

September 25: The Phils were idle while the Mets played the game that was accounting for all the half games in the standings. Trailing 6-3 heading into the bottom of the seventh, the Mets scored four times in their last three times at the plate to earn a 7-6 win.

The 89-70 Phillies led the 88-71 Mets by just a game. Each team had three games left to play. The Phils hosted the Nationals and the Mets hosted the Marlins.

September 26: It was pretty much over after September 26. Utley and Howard combined to drive in seven runs in the first two innings and the Phils rolled to an 8-4 win. The Mets, meanwhile, couldn’t find an answer for Chris Volstad. Volstad held New York to an unearned run over six innings and the Fish took the game 6-1.

The Phillies led by two games with two games left to play.

Brilliant defense by Jimmy Rollins and a solid outing by Moyer led the Phils to a 4-3 on September 27. And then it was completely over. The Mets won on the 27th, but lost on the final day of the season while the Phillies won, capping the season with the Phils three games ahead.

Ryan Howard and the Phillies agreed to a three-year, $54 million contract.

This says the Giants have offered Rich Aurilia a minor league contract.

Tom Gordon signed with Arizona.

Evidently where Joe is goin’ with that gun in his hand is to the showers after five innings

If Joe Blanton was supposed to be the force that stabilized the Phillies’ rotation he certainly hasn’t done that so far. The Phils won the game last night, but without much help from Blanton. The Phils gave him a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first and Blanton gave back both runs in the top of the second. The Phillies scored three more times in the bottom of the second, but ended the top of the third clinging to a 5-4 lead.

Blanton exited after five innings, leaving four frames for the bullpen to throw. Werth looked like he had blown the game open with a three-run homer in the seventh that put the Phils up four. Things got close when Romero yielded a two-run homer in the eighth — Lidge bent but didn’t break in the ninth.

Blanton hasn’t gotten an out in the seventh inning in any of his last six starts. He has gone six innings in just one of those starts while allowing 19 earned runs in 30 2/3 innings (5.58 ERA).

The Phillies beat the Florida Marlins last night, winning 8-6 to improve to 79-65 on the season. They have won three of their last four and trail the Mets by a game and a half in the NL East.

Joe Blanton got the start for the Phillies and went five innings, allowing four runs on five hits and three walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a home run. He struck out one.

He threw a 1-2-3 first.

He started the second up 2-0. He walked Mike Jacobs and Dan Uggla back-to-back to start the inning. Josh Willingham was next and blooped a single to left, loading the bases with nobody out. John Baker flew to center for the first out. Jacobs scored to make it 2-1 and Uggla went to third. Alfredo Amezaga was next and he grounded to first, scoring Uggla to tie the game at 2-2. The pitcher Anibal Sanchez flew to right for the third out.

He walked Hanley Ramirez to start the third after the Phillies scored three in the bottom of the second to give him a 5-2 lead. He got the next two before Jacobs lined a 2-1 pitch out to right-center, cutting the lead to 5-4. Uggla flew to right for the third out.

Just an awful job by Blanton to walk the leadoff man two innings in a row.

Amezaga singled with two outs in the fourth, but Blanton got pitcher Mark Hendrickson to ground out behind him.

Ramirez started the fifth with a single, but Hermida hit into a double-play behind him. Jorge Cantu was next and singled to right, but Blanton got Jacobs to ground to first to end the frame.

Durbin started the sixth with the Phils up 5-4. He hit Willingham with a 2-2 pitch with one out. Baker was next and he hit a hard ground ball between first and second, but Howard made a nice play to field and throw to second to start a nifty double-play and set the Marlins down.

More good defense from Howard, who has been outstanding over the past couple of days.

Durbin threw a 1-2-3 seventh.

Romero started the eighth with an 8-4 lead. He walked Cantu on four pitches with one out and Cody Ross hit for Mike Jacobs. Ross got ahead 2-0 and then hit a 2-1 pitch out to left, cutting the lead to 8-6. Madson came in and struck out Uggla before Willingham doubled to left. Eyre came in to pitch to the lefty Baker and got him on a fly ball to left, leaving Willingham stranded.

With a four-run lead, Romero stays in to pitch to a righty and the righty hurts him and the Phils have to bring Madson in one batter later anyway.

Lidge started the ninth up 8-6. Amezaga led off and hit a ground ball to second. Utley fielded and tossed softly to first, nearly too softly as the throw just beat the speedy Amezaga. Lefty Dallas McPherson hit for the pitcher Joe Nelson and doubled to right. Ramirez was next and he hit a ground ball in the hole between short and third. Rollins tried to backhand the ball and didn’t field it cleanly. McPherson was going for third, so Rollins picked up the ball and threw to third. Feliz caught it, but way too far off the bag, and the tag was late. With one out and men on first and third, Wes Helms came to the plate as the go-ahead run. Lidge struck him out on three pitches. Cantu was next and Lidge struck him out in three pitches to end the game.

The pen went four innings, allowing two runs on four hits and a walk. Romero got one out, walked a hitter and gave up a two-run homer.

The Phillies lineup against righty Anibal Sanchez went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Dobbs (7) Stairs (8) Ruiz. Slumping Burrell on the bench. Werth in left and Stairs in right. Dobbs plays third against the righty with Feliz on the bench. Ruiz catches.

Rollins led off the first with a single. Victorino flew to right for the first out before Rollins stole second and took third on a throwing error by the catcher Baker. Utley singled to right and Rollins scored to put the Phils up 1-0. Howard was next and split the gap in right-center with a double. Utley scored from first and it was 2-0. Werth struck out and Dobbs grounded to third to leave him stranded.

With the game tied at 2-2, Stairs walked to start the second and went to third when Ruiz followed with a double. Blanton hit a fly ball to left for the first out. The throw home wasn’t cut off, and Ruiz did a nice job of going to third as Stairs scored to make it 3-2. Rollins singled into right and Ruiz scored (4-2). Rollins stole second before Victorino struck out for the second out. Utley drew a walk and it put men on first and second with two down for Howard. Howard singled into center and Rollins scored, extending the lead to 5-2. Werth flew to center for the third out.

1-2-3 in the third.

Rollins singled with one out in the fourth and went to second when Victorino grounded out for the second out. Rollins stole third before Utley struck out to end the inning.

Three stolen bases in the first four innings of the game for Rollins.

Howard and Werth struck out in a 1-2-3 fifth.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the sixth. With lefty Mark Hendrickson on the mound for Florida, Bruntlett hit for Stairs. The Fish brought in righty Logan Kensing and Kensing got Bruntlett to pop to first.

With one out in the seventh, Victorino walked and Utley was hit by a pitch. Howard was next and hit a double-play ball to second. Uggla fielded and threw to Ramirez at second for the force. His throw was low and outside, though, and Utley went hard into the bag. The Fish couldn’t double up Howard and it proved to be critical. It brought Werth to the plate with two outs and he blasted the first pitch of his at-bat out to center, putting the Phils up 8-4. Andy Tracy hit for Durbin and struck out to end the inning.

Feliz walked with two outs in the eighth, but Rollins flew to left for the third out.

Rollins was 3-for-5 with an RBI and three stolen bases.

Victorino 0-for-3 with a walk.

Utley was 1-for-2 with a walk and an RBI.

Howard 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI.

Werth 1-for-4 with three RBI.

Dobbs 0-for-3.

Stairs 0-for-1 with a walk.

Ruiz 1-for-4 with a double.

Kyle Kendrick (11-8, 5.06) faces righty Chris Volstad (4-3, 3.32) tonight. The 21-year-old Volstad has appeared in 11 games for the Marlins this season, ten of which have been starts. He’s allowed just two home runs in 62 1/3 innings, both of which have been hit by righties. He started against the Phils on August 7 and allowed three hits and three walks over six shutout innings. Kendrick hasn’t gone six innings in any of his last five starts. Over those five starts he’s struck out seven in 21 2/3 innings and allowed 22 earned runs.

Two out of three ain’t bad, but three turns out to be a little hard to watch for Phillies fans

Starting pitching and two big swings of the bat from Greg Dobbs were the story of the Phils’ series with the Mets. The story started out well but didn’t have the happy ending that Phillies fans were hoping for.

Dobbs provided most of the offense as the Phils won games one and two of the set, clubbing a two-run homer in the seventh inning of game one and a three-run shot in the fourth inning of the first game of yesterday’s double-header. Given the amazing starting pitching the Phils got in games one and two of the series, that was just about all the Phillies needed. Myers and Moyer combined to go 15 shutout innings, allowing five hits and five walks.

Starting pitching was sadly also the story of last night’s game for the Phils, as Cole Hamels simply couldn’t get it done as the Phils tried to climb back even with the Mets atop the NL East. Hamels went just five innings, allowing five runs. Carlos Delgado found time to hit two monstrous home runs against him in his short outing.

Overall it was a good series with a disappointing ending for the Phils. They put themselves in position to sweep, but just couldn’t do it as Santana outpitched Hamels in the finale. The Phils remain in the thick of the race, but the outing by their ace Hamels has to be cause for concern — the 24-year-old remains atop the National League in innings pitched as the Phils head down the stretch.

The Phillies lost to the New York Mets last night, falling 6-3 to drop to 78-65 on the season. The Phils take the series two games to one but trail the Mets by two games in the NL East.

Cole Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went five innings, allowing five runs on nine hits and a walk. Only four of the runs were earned. Three of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and two home runs. He struck out six.

Hamels started the first with a 1-0 lead. He got Jose Reyes to pop to Utley for the first out. Ryan Church followed with a single to left. Hamels got ahead of David Wright, but as Wright swung at an 0-2 pitch his bat clipped the tip of Coste’s glove. Coste was called for catcher’s interference and Manuel was ejected arguing the call. With men on first and second, Beltran singled into left and Church scored from second to tie the game at 1-1. With men on second and third, Carlos Delgado singled into center and both runners scored to put the Mets up 3-1. Fernando Tatis was next and hit a ground ball to short. Delgado was forced at second for the second out. Hamels struck out Damion Easley for the third out.

With one out in the second, pitcher Johan Santana hit a ball down the line and off of Feliz’s glove for a single. Reyes followed with a ground ball to short. Rollins fielded and tossed to Utley, but Utley took the toss way off the bag and didn’t get the call at second. Utley was charged with an error and the Mets had men on first and second. Church was next and he dribbled a ball between the mound and short for a single that loaded the bases. Hamels got behind Wright 2-0, but came back to strike him out swinging 3-2 for the second out. Beltran popped to first to leave the bases loaded.

Big strikeout for Hamels, getting Wright with one out and the bases loaded after getting behind 2-0.

Delgado started the third and pounded an 0-2 pitch out to right. 4-2 Mets. Hamels got the next two before Schneider singled to center. Santana grounded to third to end the inning.

Hamels had thrown 78 pitches through three innings.

He threw a 1-2-3 fourth.

Hamels got the first out in the fifth before Delgado hit another long homer out to right on the first pitch of his at-bat, putting the Mets up 5-2. Tatis grounded to third for the second out before Easley hit a ball over Burrell’s head for a double. Hamels walked Brian Schneider intentionally to put men on first and second and pitch to the pitcher. He struck Santana out to end the inning.

Still hate walking Schneider intentionally. Hate it more with a lefty on the mound.

Condrey started the sixth with the Phillies down 5-2. Hamels had thrown 110 pitches. Condrey threw a 1-2-3 sixth.

Seanez threw a 1-2-3 seventh.

Seanez started the eighth and gave up a leadoff triple to Easley. Easley came in to score when Schneider followed with a sac fly to right, putting the Mets up 6-2. Seanez got the next two.

One run over three innings for the pen. They allowed one hit, the triple, and struck out three. Seanez needed 29 pitches to throw his two innings, Condrey threw just nine.

The Phillies’ lineup against lefty Johan Santana went (1) Rollins (2) Utley (3) Werth (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Victorino (7) Feliz (8) Coste. Werth hits third against the lefty despite coming into the game 3-for-his-last-17. Burrell (3-for-his-last-21) hits fifth with Victorino sixth against the lefty. Feliz at third and Coste catches.

Utley singled with one out in the first. Werth followed with a walk. Howard was next and he laced a single into left and Utley scored to put the Phils up 1-0 with Werth going to second. Burrell struck out looking 3-2 and Victorino flew to center.

Burrell is having a pretty rough go of it.

Coste walked with one out in the second. Hamels bunted back to the pitcher and Santana threw to second to force Coste. Rollins grounded to third for the third out.

With two outs in the third, Howard blasted the first pitch of his at-bat out to left. It was his 40th home run of the season and it cut the Mets’ lead to 3-2. Burrell struck out for the third out.

1-2-3 in the fourth and 1-2-3 again in the fifth. Hamels hit for himself to start the fifth, having thrown 88 pitches with the Phils down 4-2.

Burrell walked with two outs in the sixth. Victorino flew to right for the third out.

Feliz singled to right to start the seventh with the Phils down 5-2. Coste flew to center for the first out and Ruiz hit for Condrey with Santana still on the mound for the Mets. Ruiz grounded to third and Feliz was forced at second for the second out. Rollins lined to third to end the frame.

Werth doubled with one out in the eighth. Howard moved him to third with a ground out before Burrell grounded to short to end the frame.

Victorino led off the ninth with the Phils down 6-2 and hit a ground ball out in front of the plate. Schneider jumped on it, but was charged with an error on his throw to first, allowing Victorino to go to second. Dobbs hit for Feliz with righty Luis Ayala on the mound and flew to center for the first out. Stairs hit for Coste and reached on an infield single to third that moved Victorino to third. Andy Tracy hit for Seanez and new Phillie Tad Iguchi ran for Stairs at first. Tracy hit a fly ball to left for the second out, Victorino tagged and scored to make it 6-3. Ayala struck out Rollins to end the game.

Rollins was 0-for-5 in the game. 2-for-14 with a double in the series. 270/335/432 for the season.

Utley 1-for-4 in the game. 1-for-11 in the series. 289/377/541 for the year.

Werth 1-for-3 with a walk. 2-for-9 with a double and two walks in the series. 277/376/513.

Howard 2-for-4 with a home run and two RBI. It was his 40th of the season and he has driven in 121. 3-for-10 in the series. He’s hitting 237/326/506 for the year.

Burrell was 0-for-3 with a walk. 2-for-10 in the series. 253/370/513 for the year. After hitting .181 in August, he’s hitting .133 in September.

Victorino was 1-for-4. 3-for-13 in the set. 280/343/424 for the year.

Feliz was 1-for-3 in the game and 1-for-4 in the series. He’s hitting 250/298/406 for the season. Dobbs 0-for-1 in the game and 4-for-8 with a double, two home runs and five RBI in the series. 299/333/482 for the year.

Coste 0-for-2. 0-for-5 in the series. 270/325/438 on the season and 0-for-10 in September. Ruiz was 0-for-1 in the game and 3-for-5 with a double in the series. 227/323/300 for the year.

In the first game the Phils beat the Mets 6-2 to improve to 78-64 on the season.

Jamie Moyer got the start for the Phillies and went seven shutout innings, allowing two hits and three walks. Both of the hits were singles and he dropped his ERA to 3.64 on the season.

He threw a 1-2-3 first.

He started the second with a 2-0 lead. He walked Tatis with two outs, but Easley grounded to third for the third out.

Robinson Cancel bunted to third for a hit, the first of the game by the Mets, to start the third. Pitcher Pedro Martinez bunted Cancel to second for the first out. Reyes grounded to Dobbs for the second out with Cancel holding second. Moyer walked Nick Evans to put men on first and second, but Wright flew to right to end the inning.

Moyer threw a 1-2-3 fourth, getting the second out on a hard ground ball to first by Delgado that Howard made a nice play on.

He walked Cancel with one out in the fifth, but got the next two.

With the Phils up 6-0, Moyer threw a 1-2-3 sixth. Golson, who hit for Stairs in the top of the inning, played center with Victorino moving to right.

Easley reached on an infield single with two outs in the seventh. Cancel grounded to second for the third out.

Eyre started the eighth with the Phils up 6-0. He struck out pinch-hitter Argenis Reyes for the first out and got Jose Reyes on a fly ball to right for the second. Nick Evans doubled to center and Wright followed with a double to left, scoring Evans to make it 6-1. Beltran was next and split the gap in left-center with a double. Werth tried to pick the ball up, but dropped it, and Golson picked it up and threw a little wildly into the infield. Beltran went to third and Wright scored to make it 6-2. Golson got a tough error, they didn’t have a chance to get Beltran at third anyway. Eyre struck out Delgado to end the inning.

Back-to-back-to-back doubles by Eyre wasn’t that impressive.

Madson started the ninth up 6-2. He struck out Tatis for the first out before Easley singled. Lefty Daniel Murphy hit for Cancel and Romero came in to pitch to him. Murphy hit into a double-play to end the game.

Two innings, two runs for the pen. Eyre was hit hard, Madson struck one out and gave up a single and Romero got the double-play. Eyre threw 28 pitches, Madson and Romero both under ten.

The Phillies’ lineup against righty Pedro Martinez went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Dobbs (7) Stairs (8) Ruiz. Dobbs starts at third against the righty even with Moyer on the mound — Manuel has often gone with his best defensive option at third in games that Moyer has started. Burrell on the bench with Werth in left and Stairs in right. Ruiz catches.

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

Werth walked with one out in the second and went to third when Dobbs followed with a double. Stairs hit a fly ball to right for the second out. It was deep enough for Werth to tag and score and the Phils led 1-0. Ruiz was next and he lined a 1-1 pitch into left for a single. Dobbs scored and it was 2-0. Moyer grounded out for the third out.

Big two-out hit for Ruiz.

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

Howard led off the fourth with a double. Werth followed and blooped a single into left, moving Howard to third. Dobbs was next and drove an 0-1 pitch into right center and just out for a three-run homer that put the Phils up 5-0. Stairs flew to right for the first out before Ruiz doubled down the right field line. Moyer dribbled a ball back to the mound for the second out and Ruiz went to third. Rollins blooped a double between Reyes and Evans in left and Ruiz scored, making it 6-0. Victorino grounded to second for the third out.

1-2-3 fifth.

1-2-3 sixth. Golson hit for Stairs with one out and Scott Schoeneweis and struck out swinging 0-2 in his first career at-bat.

Moyer led off the seventh with a walk. Rollins hit into a double-play behind him. Victorino followed with a single and a walk to Utley put men on first and second for Howard, but Howard struck out to leave both men stranded.

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

Ruiz started the ninth with a single. Feliz moved him to second with a ground out and Rollins moved him to third with another. Victorino fouled out to the catcher to leave him stranded.

Rollins was 1-for-5 with a double and an RBI.

Victorino 1-for-5.

Utley 0-for-3 with a walk.

Howard 1-for-4 with a double and two strikeouts.

Werth 1-for-3 with a walk.

Dobbs 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and three RBI.

Stairs 0-for-1 with an RBI.

Ruiz 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI.

Joe Blanton (6-12, 4.79) faces righty Anibal Sanchez (2-3, 5.54) tonight. Over his last three starts, Sanchez has allowed 14 runs in 14 1/3 innings. Lefties are hitting .365 against him for the season, righties .189. Blanton has gone six innings in just one of his last five starts. In his last three starts he has walked 11 in 15 2/3 innings.

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