Tag: Raul Ibanez

L27OGY?

If there is one, let’s just hope it’s for the Phils and not St Louis.

Cole Hamels faces lefty Jaime Garcia this afternoon in game three in St Louis.

Hamels went 14-9 for the Phils with a 2.79 ERA and an 0.97 ratio. He was second in the NL in ratio and in the top ten in ERA, strikeouts and innings pitched. He allowed just 169 hits in 216 innings — that’s about 7.042 per nine innings, which was second-best in the league behind Clayton Kershaw.

Righties hit just 204/251/326 against the lefty Hamels for the season. Lefties 249/286/376.

Hamels had the best year of his career preventing home runs in 2011, allowing just 19 in 216 innings. He allowed a lot more homers towards the end of the year. Over his first 17 starts of the year through the end of June he threw 116 innings and allowed just six home runs. That’s 0.47 home runs per nine innings. From the start of August to the end of the season he allowed 11 home runs in 64 innings (1.54 per nine). In the 38 innings he threw in September, Hamels allowed nine home runs (2.13 per nine).

He made one start against St Louis this year, allowing four runs in seven innings on September 18. The Phils lost that game 5-0. Hamels struck out nine in seven innings, but allowed pair of two-run homers in the game. Pujols hit one in the first and Allen Craig got him in the sixth. Blanton gave up a run in relief in the eighth and Chris Carpenter threw eight shutout innings against the Phils.

Pujols is just 4-for-23 for his career against Hamels, but with a double and two home runs. Berkman 7-for-21 with seven singles. Theriot seems like a good bet to start at second, he’s 7-for-21 with two doubles and a homer against Hamels. Furcal 2-for-10. Craig 2-for-6 with a homer. Molina 4-for-18 with two doubles.

Hamels was named the most valuable player of the 2008 World Series and the 2008 NLCS. In six playoff starts in ’08 he threw to a 2.16 ERA with an 0.94 ratio. Overall he has made 12 playoff starts for his career, throwing to a 3.33 ERA with a 1.03 ratio. Last year he threw a complete-game shutout against the Reds in game three of the NLDS, allowing four singles, a double and no walks as the Phils won 2-0.

Lefty Jaime Garcia, 13-7 with a 3.56 ERA in the regular season, goes for the Cardinals.

The 25-year-old Garcia was better against righties than lefties this year, holding righties to a 264/309/388 line while lefties hit 308/352/418 against him. He was also a lot better at home than on the road, throwing to a 2.55 ERA with a 1.11 ratio at home and a 4.61 ERA with an ugly 1.54 ratio in his 17 starts on the road.

Garcia is good at keeping the ball in the yard. Over the last two seasons he has allowed 24 homers in 358 innings (0.60 per nine).

He made two starts against the Phillies this year and was very good, holding them to two runs (one earned) over 15 innings.

On May 17 he held the Phils to an unearned run over eight innings as the Cards topped the Phillies 2-1. St Louis went up 1-0 with a run off of Oswalt in the fourth on a walk and two singles. Rollins reached on a dropped popup by Tyler Greene in the eighth and scored on a sac fly by Polanco to tie the game at 1-1, but Baez started the ninth and allowed the first three men he faced to reach on singles, which loaded the bases. Berkman singled off of Romero to give the Cards a walkoff win.

On September 16 he allowed a run over seven innings in Philadelphia as the Cards won 4-2. The Cards jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the second with a run off of Worley on three walks and a single. Back-to-back doubles by Polanco and Mayberry tied the game up at 1-1 in the bottom of the inning, which is the only earned run the Phillies scored charged to Garcia this year. Molina homered off of Bastardo in the eight to put the Cards up 2-1, but the Phils tied the game at 2-2 when Corey Patterson dropped a fly ball from Ruiz with two outs in the ninth, allowing Martinez to score from second. St Louis scored two runs charged to Schwimer in the top of the eleventh to get the win.

Pence is the Phillies with the most career at-bats against Garcia. He’s 3-for-15 against Garcia with a double, a triple and a home run. Howard 2-for-12 with a home run (one of just nine HR on the year that Garica allowed in 163 1/3 innings in 2010), Utley 0-for-6, Rollins 1-for-11, Polanco 2-for-11 with a double, Victorino 2-for-9.

Garcia will be the first lefty that the Phillies have faced in the post-season. Ibanez was 1-for-3 against Garcia this year and Mayberry 3-for-6 with a double.

Garcia will be making his first post-season appearance.

This suggests that Mayberry will start in left instead of Ibanez. Ibanez is 3-for-8 with a home run and four RBI in the first two games of the series. I think Mayberry is the better choice.


Phils still not scoring runs, but making great strides towards getting their intentional walking ship in order for the post-season

The Phils lost again last night, but clinched home field advantage throughout the post-season with a loss by the Brewers. The offense struggled again for the Phillies in the game, scoring two runs in the bottom of the late but falling 4-3 as the rally fell short.

The Phils have scored three runs or less in ten of their last 11 games.

Halladay surprised a bit in the game by not being lights-out. Coming into the outing having allowed one run over 17 innings over his last two starts, Halladay gave up a pair of runs in the first on his way to allowing four runs over eight innings in the game. It was the fifth time in 31 starts this season that Halladay was charged with more than three runs in a start. He also curiously walked Lance Berkman intentionally twice in the game after Berkman homered off of him in the first. Both times it worked out for Halladay, who came into the start have issued just two intentional walks for the season.

If we’re voting, I think having Halladay walk two batters intentionally in a start is a pretty poor idea. My argument is as follows: He’s Roy flippin’ Halladay. In 67 starts as a Phillie, last night’s is the only one in which Halladay has walked more than three batters in a game. It’s the first time since June 25, 2008 that he has walked more than three batters in a game pitching for any team. He walked more batters intentionally last night than he did in 489 2/3 innings between 2009 and 2010 combined (one IBB in those two seasons).

The Phillies are 98-54 on the year after losing 4-3 to the St Louis Cardinals. St Louis takes the series three games to one.

Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went eight innings, allowing four runs on six hits and four walks. Four of the hits went for extra-bases, three doubles and a home run. He struck out six.

Rafael Furcal was the first batter of the game and he doubled to right. Nick Punto was next and Furcal moved up to third on a passed ball by Ruiz before Punto grounded to first with Furcal scoring from third to put St Louis up 1-0. Albert Pujols grounded to Halladay for the second out before Lance Berkman hit a 1-0 pitch out to right. 2-0. Allen Craig lined to Utley for the third out.

Halladay set the Cards down in order in the second, getting Jon Jay on a ball handled by Ruiz, Gerald Laird on a ground ball to short and Daniel Descalso on a popup to Utley.

The lead was cut to 2-1 when pitcher Kyle Lohse led off the third with a double to center. Furcal bunted him to third with the first out before Halladay walked Punto. With men on first and third, Halladay struck Pujols out looking 2-2 for the second out. Berkman was next, though, and lined a single into center, scoring Lohse (3-1) and moving Punto to second. Craig popped to Utley for the third out.

With two outs in the fourth, Descalso hit a ground ball to first that Gload didn’t handle for an error. Halladay struck Lohse out swinging to leave Descalso at first.

Furcal reached on an infield single to start the fifth and Punto bunted him to second with the first out. Pujols flew to right for the second out and Halladay walked the switch-hitter Berkman intentionally, putting men on first and second with two outs for Craig. Halladay struck Craig out swinging 0-2 to leave both men stranded.

Not a fan of that one, although it’s harder to argue with if Halladay is going to blow Craig away.

Halladay set St Louis down in order in the sixth.

He walked Punto with two outs in the seventh. Pujols was next and doubled to left, plating Punto to extend the St Louis lead to 4-1. Halladay again walked Berkman intentionally, putting men on first and second, and got Craig on a ground ball to third to end the inning.

Again with the intentional walk to Berkman. Enough to make one suspect it has more to do with lack of fear of Craig than it does with fear of Berkman. Worked twice for the Phils, but I’m still not a fan.

Halladay threw a 1-2-3 eighth.

Herndon started the ninth. Furcal doubled to left with one out. Punto was next and Herndon struck him out swinging for the second out. Pujols struck out swinging 0-2 to end the frame.

Five scoreless innings in his last four appearances for Herndon. He has a 1.71 ERA in 19 appearances since the All-Star break. He threw 17 pitches in the game.

The Phillies lineup against righty Kyle Lohse went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Pence (5) Ibanez (6) Polanco (7) Gload (8) Ruiz. Gload at first for Howard.

Down 2-0, the Phillies went in order in the bottom of the first.

Polanco singled with two outs in the second and Gload reached on an error by Punto at second behind him. It brought Ruiz to the plate with men on first and second and Ruiz singled into right just under the glove of a diving Punto, scoring Polanco and cutting the lead to 2-1. Halladay struck out swinging to leave the runners at first and second.

Punto’s error keeps the inning alive for Ruiz to knock into Polanco. Not a good inning defensively for the Cards at second, with Punto just missing on Ruiz’s single.

Victorino singled with one out in the third and the Phils down 3-1. Utley hit a ball to second. Punto fielded and went to second where Furcal didn’t handle it for an error that left the Phils with one down and men on first and second. Pence loaded the bases with a single to left, but Ibanez struck out swinging 2-2 and Polanco struck out swinging 1-2.

It’s almost like Howard were still in the lineup. No RBI, no contact for Ibanez with one out and the bases loaded and the Phils can’t take advantage of the extra out on the error by Furcal.

Gload singled to start the fourth. Ruiz flew to center for the first out and Halladay bunted Gload up to second with the second. Rollins walked to put two men on base, but Victorino grounded to first to leave them both stranded.

Can Gload score from second on a single with two outs? We may never know. I’m guessing it depends on what kind of a single it is. Not sure I would bunt him to second with the second out unless I was pretty sure.

Pence singled with one out in the fifth. Ibanez was next and smashed a ball back up the middle, but Lohse caught the low line drive and threw to first where Pence was doubled-off to end the inning.

Gload doubled to center with one out in the sixth. Ruiz grounded to short for the second out with Gload holding second. Halladay grounded to second to set the Phillies down.

Down 4-1, the Phils went in order in the seventh.

Polanco walked with two outs in the eighth. With lefty Marc Rzepczynski on the mound for the Cards, Mayberry hit for Gload and grounded to first to end the inning.

Ruiz doubled to left to start the ninth. With righty Jason Motte pitching for St Louis, Moss hit for Herndon and struck out swinging. Rollins was next and he ripped a triple into the gap in right-center, scoring Ruiz to cut the lead to 4-2. Victorino grounded to short for the second out with Rollins scoring. 4-3. Lefty Arthur Rhodes came in to pitch to Utley and Utley singled to right. Righty Octavio Dotel took over for Rhodes and got Pence to ground to third to end the game.

Moss instead of Brown gets the at-bat against Moss. First at-bat of the year for Moss. Rollins looked good running the bases on his triple. Looked like a double when he hit it to me.

Rollins was 1-for-4 with a triple and a walk. 6-for-18 with a triple in the four-game series. That’s his first walk since August 20 (although he missed about 20 days from August 22 to September 9). 278/339/397 for the year. He hit 20 triples in 2007 and has hit 19 since.

Victorino 1-for-5 with an RBI. 4-for-15 with three walks and a homer in the set. He’s hitting .195 in September and 288/365/505 for the year.

Utley 1-for-5. 4-for-18 in the series. He doesn’t have a walk in his last 63 plate appearances and is on-basing .241 in September. 262/341/430 for the season.

Pence 2-for-5 yesterday and 5-for-17 with two walks and a double in the series. 317/386/541 with the Phillies for the year. He’s tops on the team in all three categories with the exception of on-base percentage — Dane Sardinha has on-based .419 for the Phils this year in his 43 plate appearances.

Ibanez 0-for-4 and struck out twice. 1-for-14 with a grand slam in the series. 4-for-his-last-32 and hitting 242/288/419 for the season.

Polanco 1-for-3 with a walk. 5-for-14 with a double and three walks in the series. He’s hitting 308/395/385 in September. 281/341/345 for the season. He was hitting .273 after going 0-for-4 against the Fish on September 3. He’s 19-for-his-last-57 (.333) with eight walks. 301/381/350 in his 118 plate appearances since August 5.

Gload 2-for-3 with a double. 2-for-7 in the series with a walk and a double. 257/278/314 for the year.

Ruiz 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI. 2-for-9 with a walk and a double in the set. 280/371/385 for the season.

The Phils play a double-header with the Nats today. Kendrick (8-6, 3.22) faces lefty Ross Detwiler (2-5, 3.76) in the afternoon game. Righties are hitting .295 against Detwiler for the season and have hit six of the seven home runs he has allowed. Kendrick has a 2.60 ERA over 52 innings in his last 11 appearances since July 6, but seven of the 22 runs he allowed in that time have been unearned. He’s allowed more than three earned runs in just one of his last ten starts. Cliff Lee (16-7, 2.38) faces rookie lefty Tom Milone (1-0, 4.60) in the night game.


Phils best in the East, but looking second-best in their series with the Cards

The Phils clinched the NL East this weekend with a 9-2 win over the Cardinals on Saturday. Just about everything went right for the Phillies in that game — Oswalt looked great throwing seven shutout innings and Ibanez hit a grand slam in the bottom of the eighth as the Phils scored six times to blow the game open.

The rest of the series hasn’t gone quite as well, with the Cards taking the other two games. The most worrisome developments of the two losses were continued struggles by Bastardo and more home runs allowed by Cole Hamels. Yadier Molina homered off of Bastardo in the eighth inning of game one of the set, breaking a 1-1 tie. In last night’s game, Hamels went seven innings and allowed four runs, all four of which scored on a pair of two-run homers.

After his appearance on September 5, Bastardo was looking unstoppable. He had thrown to a 1.35 ERA for the year and struck out 66 in 53 1/3 innings while opponents had hit .110 against him for the season. Since then he has faced 15 batters over five appearances and nine of them have reached base on four hits and five walks.

Through the end of July, Hamels had allowed eight home runs in 152 innings over 22 starts (0.47 home runs per nine innings). In his last nine starts he has allowed nine home runs over 54 innings(1.47 home runs per nine).

On Friday, the Phils lost the opener of the series 4-2 in 11 innings. Worley started for the Phils and walked three in the top of the second, with a walk to Rafael Furcal with the bases loaded forcing in David Freese to put St Louis up 1-0. The Phils tied it up in the bottom of the inning on back-to-back doubles by Polanco and Mayberry. It stayed tied until the eighth, when Yadier Molina homered off of Bastardo with one out to put the Cards up 2-1. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Howard delivered a pinch-hit double and came in to score when Corey Patterson dropped Ruiz’s fly ball in the right field corner after a long run, tying the game at 2-2. Schwimer started the ninth for the Phils and allowed a leadoff double to Furcal. Furcal would come in to score on a single by Adron Chambers and Tyler Greene followed that with an RBI-double that put St Louis on top to stay at 4-2.

Saturday the Phils won 9-2 with the help of a strong outing from Oswalt and a grand slam from Ibanez to clinch the NL East. Oswalt threw seven shutout innings and Stutes took over in the top of the eighth with a 3-0 lead. Stutes got just two outs but was charged with two runs on four hits before Lidge come on to get Allen Craig to set the Cards down with men on first and second. With their lead cut to a single run, the Phils scored six runs in the bottom of the eighth, getting RBI-singles from Victorino and Pence and a slam from Ibanez, extending their lead to 9-2. Madson allowed a two-out single in the ninth, but got Furcal to ground to second and end the game.

The Phillies lost 5-0 last night.

The Phillies are 98-53 on the year losing 5-0 to the St Louis Cardinals last night. St Louis has won two of the first three games in the four-game set.

Hamels got the start for the Phillies last night and went seven innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. Four of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and two two-run home runs. He struck out nine and didn’t walk a batter.

Ryan Theriot was the first batter of the game and he lined to center for the first out. Allen Craig was next and he doubled to left, putting a man on second for Albert Pujols. Pujols hit the first pitch he saw from Hamels out to left, putting St Louis on top 2-0. David Freese and Lance Berkman both struck out swinging to set St Louis down.

Yadier Molina led off the second and grounded out to Utley. Rafael Furcal followed with a bunt single and Furcal stole second as Hamels struck Jon Jay out swinging for the second out. Chris Carpenter struck out swinging to leave Furcal at second.

Hamels threw a 1-2-3 third.

In the fourth, Berkman singled with one out. Hamels got Molina to ground into a double-play behind him.

Hamels struck out Furcal and Jay as he set St Louis down in order in the fifth.

Theriot doubled to start the sixth and Allen Craig hit an 0-2 pitch out to left-center behind him. 4-0. Hamels got the next three hitters in order.

Jay singled to right with two outs in the seventh, but Hamels got Carpenter on a fly ball to right for the third out.

Blanton started the eighth and got Theriot on a ground ball before Craig homered again, hitting a 1-2 pitch out to center to make it 5-0. Blanton struck out Pujols and Freese behind Craig.

Second outing for Blanton since his return — he’s allowed a run over two innings and struck out three.

Righty Justin De Fratus made his debut for the Phillies in the ninth. He got Berkman on a fly ball to center for the first out and Molina on a pop to short for the second. He walked Furcal on five pitches, but got Jay to ground to third to end the frame.

Blanton threw 19 pitches in the game and De Fratus 13.

The Phillies lineup against righty Chris Carpenter went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Pence (5) Ibanez (6) Polanco (7) Gload (8) Schneider. Howard and Ruiz rest to start the game, with lefties Gload and Schneider starting against the righty Carpenter.

The Phils were down 2-0 when they hit in the bottom of the first. Victorino and Utley singled back-to-back with one out, putting runners on first and second for Pence. Pence grounded into a double-play to end the inning.

Polanco singled with one out in the second, but Gload grounded into a double-play behind him.

Schneider and Hamels both struck out to start the third before Rollins singled to left. Victorino grounded to first to end the inning.

Utley and Pence singled back-to-back to start the fourth, putting men on first and second with nobody out. Ibanez hit into a double-play and Polanco grounded to third, leaving Utley at third.

Hamels singled to right with two outs in the fifth, but Rollins flew to center to leave him stranded.

Victorino and Utley went down to start the sixth with the Phils down 4-0. Pence hit a ball to short that Furcal fielded, but his throw to first was bad for an error. Ibanez grounded to second to leave Pence stranded.

Polanco walked to start the seventh, but Gload and Schneider went down behind him. With two outs, Polanco still on first and Carpenter still pitching for the Cardinals, Bowker hit for Hamels and struck out swinging for the third out.

Bowker 0-for-8 with six strikeouts since joining the Phillies.

Down 5-0, Utley singled with two outs in the eighth. Pence struck out swinging to leave him at first.

Gload walked with two outs in the eighth, but Schneider struck out swinging behind him.

The Phillies didn’t have an extra-base hit in the game.

Rollins was 1-for-4 in the game. 5-for-14 in the first three games of the four-game set.

Victorino 1-for-4 in the game. 3-for-10 with a homer so far in the series.

Utley 3-for-4 in the game. 3-for-13 so far in the series. 5-for-his-last-29 coming into last night’s game.

Pence 1-for-4. 3-for-12 with two walks and a double in the series so far.

Ibanez 0-for-4 and left three men on base. 1-for-10 with a grand slam in the series.

Polanco 1-for-3 with a walk. 4-for-11 with a double and three walks in the series. 306/389/387 so far in September.

Gload 0-for-3 with a walk. 5-for-17 in September with five singles.

Schneider 0-for-4 and struck out three times. He’s hitting .171 for the year and on-basing .234.

Halladay (18-5, 2.34) faces righty Kyle Lohse (13-8, 3.82) tonight.

Ryan Howard will have a cortisone shot in his left ankle.


Vance trance

The Phils topped the Braves last night, winning 6-3 behind another solid effort from Vance Worley. The Phils are 14-0 in the last 14 games that Worley has started.

After sitting against a righty in game one of the series, Ibanez was back in the lineup and hammering the ball in game two. He went 3-for-4 with a double and drove in three of the six Phillie runs.

The Phillies are 90-48 on the year after beating the Atlanta Braves 6-3 last night. With the win the Phils extend their lead over Atlanta in the division to 9 1/2 games.

Worley got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing two runs on seven hits and three walks. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and a home run. He struck out six.

He walked Martin Prado with one out in the first and Prado moved up to second when Brian McCann followed with a single to left. Worley stuck Dan Uggla out swinging and Chipper Jones out looking to leave both runners stranded.

Up 2-0, Worley threw a 1-2-3 second.

Michael Bourn bunted for a single with one out in the third. Prado was next and grounded to second with Bourn forced at second for the second out. Worley struck McCann out looking to set Atlanta down.

Uggla led off the fourth and hit a 2-1 pitch out to right center, cutting the lead to 2-1. Chipper and Freddie Freeman followed that with back-to-back singles, putting men on first and second with nobody out. Worley escaped further damage, though, striking out Alex Gonzalez and Jose Constanza before getting the pitcher Tim Hudson on a ground ball to first.

Six strikeouts for Worley through four innings — he wouldn’t get any more in his last two innings. Over his last seven starts he has struck out 43 hitters in 39 innings. In his first 13 appearances on the year he struck out 53 in 73 1/3 innings.

Bourn started the fifth with a single into center, but Worley got Prado to hit into a double-play behind him. McCann flew to center for the third out.

He walked Uggla to start the sixth and Chipper followed with a double that moved Uggla up to third. Freeman walked on a 3-2 pitch and the bases were loaded. Gonzalez flew to left for the first out, deep enough for Uggla to tag, score and tie the game at 2-2. Constanza was next and he flew to left with the runners holding first and second. Hudson hit for himself and flew to center.

Worley comes up big against the bottom of the order after walking two to help the Braves load the bases.

Stutes started the seventh with a 4-2 lead. Bourn led off with a double to right. Prado was next and flew to left for the first out before Stutes walked McCann. Bourn stole third and the runners were at the corners for Uggla. Uggla hit a ground ball to third with Bourn scoring (4-3) as Polanco went to second to force McCann for the second out. Chipper flew to right to leave Uggla at first.

Stutes has a 5.18 ERA over his last 19 appearances and has given up five home runs in 24 1/3 innings in those outings.

Lidge started the eighth with a 6-3 lead. Gonzalez singled to left with one out, but Lidge struck Constanza out behind him for the second out. Lefty Eric Hinske hit for the pitcher Cristhian Martinez. Lidge struck him out swinging at a wild 2-2 pitch with Hinske taking first. Bourn struck out swinging 1-2 to leave the runners at first and second.

Lidge strikes out three in the frame and doesn’t walk a batter. In 12 1/3 innings he has now struck out 17 and walked ten.

Madson pitched the ninth up 6-3. He allowed a leadoff single to Prado, but got McCann to hit into a double-play behind him. He struck Uggla out swinging 2-2 to end the game.

Madson hasn’t been charged with a run in his last seven appearances since he was charged with six runs in two-thirds of an inning against the Nats on August 19. Over his last seven appearances he has allowed four hits and no walks over 6 1/3 innings while striking out six.

Lee threw a complete game in the series opener, so nobody in the pen has pitched more than one day in a row. Stutes threw 21 pitches, Lidge 20 and Madson 16.

The Phillies lineup against righty Tim Hudson went (1) Victorino (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Pence (6) Ibanez (7) Schneider (8) Martinez. Martinez at short with Rollins still on the DL and Valdez on the bench. Ibanez back in left after Mayberry started against the righty Lowe in game one. Schneider catches with Ruiz on the bench.

With two outs in the first, Utley hit a 2-2 pitch out to right center, putting the Phils up 1-0. Howard and Pence followed that with back-to-back singles, which put men on first and second for Ibanez. Ibanez dumped a single in front of a diving Bourn. Howard scored to put the Phils up 2-0 and Pence moved up to third. Schneider grounded to second for the third out.

Victorino walked with two outs in the second, but Polanco grounded to short behind him.

Howard and Pence struck out as the Phils went in order in the third.

Martinez walked with two outs in the fourth and the lead cut to 2-1. Worley was next and smashed a ball to third, but Chipper handled it and threw to second to force Martinez and end the inning.

The Phils went in order in the fifth.

The game was tied at 2-2 when Howard walked to start the sixth. Pence doubled to center, putting men on second and third. With Ibanez at the plate, a wild pitch brought Howard home (3-2) and moved Pence to third. Ibanez doubled high off the wall in right center, scoring Pence to extend the lead to 4-2. Schneider fouled out to third for the first out before Martinez walked, putting men on first and second. With the righty Hudson still pitching for Atlanta, Mayberry hit for Worley and grounded into a double-play to end the inning.

No more runs for the Phils after putting Ibanez on second with nobody out. Martinez walks twice in a game for his second time in three starts. Manuel calls on Mayberry to hit against the righty. It’s too early for Gload, but it’s an interesting choice of Mayberry over the lefty Bowker.

It was 4-3 when Victorino led off the seventh with a single to right. Polanco was hit by a pitch behind him, putting men on first and second. Utley grounded to second with Polanco forced at second for the first out and Victorino moving to third. Howard grounded to second with Victorino scoring (5-3) and Utley moving up to second with two outs. Pence followed with a walk, putting men on first and second for Ibanez. Ibanez singled to right, scoring Utley to make it 6-3 with Pence moving up to second. With righty Cristhian Martinez pitching for the Braves, Ruiz hit for Schneider and walked to load the bases. Martinez struck Martinez out swinging 0-2 to leave the bases loaded.

With righty Anthony Varvaro pitching for Atlanta, Gload hit for Lidge and flew to right for the first out of the eighth. Victorino grounded to short for the second out before Polanco singled to right. Utley flew to center to leave Polanco at first.

Victorino was 1-for-4 with a walk in the game. He’s 3-for-his-last-18.

Polanco 1-for-4. He has two extra-base hits, both doubles, in his last 159 plate appearances.

Utley 1-for-5 with his tenth home run. He’s 5-for-30 to start September.

Howard 1-for-3 with a walk and an RBI. 6-for-his-last-12 with a double, a home run and seven walks. 284/411/581 over his last 90 plate appearances.

Pence 2-for-3 with a walk a double. 317/393/540 with the Phils in 145 plate appearances.

Ibanez 3-for-4 with a double and three RBI. He’s 13-for-his-last-34 with four doubles and a home run (382/417/588).

Schneider was 0-for-3 in the game and is 1-for-his-last-13.

Martinez 0-for-2 with two walks and two strikeouts.

Oswalt (7-8, 3.80) faces righty Brandon Beachy (7-2, 3.37) tonight. Righties are on-basing just .283 against Beachy for the year, but the Phils have hit him well in his three starts against them. In three outings against the Phillies, Beachy is 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA and has allowed 21 hits in 14 innings. Oswalt has thrown to a 4.70 ERA in his ten starts since the end of May, allowing 78 hits in 59 1/3 innings as opponents have hit .324 against him. He has made one start against Atlanta this year, allowing two runs (only one of which was earned) over six innings on April 9.

Chuck LaMar resigned.


Curiosity grows about where Lee is getting the month-to-month lease on unhittable

Wherever it is, here’s hoping he renews for another couple of months.

The Phils got more outstanding starting pitching last night as Cliff Lee threw 8 2/3 shutout innings and the Phils topped the Reds 3-0. For Lee it ends an August in which he allowed two runs in 39 2/3 innings over five starts.

In June, Lee allowed a run over 42 innings in five starts. In June and August combined, Lee threw to an 0.33 ERA with an 0.73 ratio and struck out 68 in 81 2/3 innings. In the months of the season other than June or August, Lee has thrown to a 4.22 ERA with a 1.28 ratio and struck out 130 in 113 innings.

In the first three games of the four-game set, the Phils have now outscored the Reds 15-2. The starting pitchers for the Phils have thrown 21 2/3 scoreless innings in the set, allowing ten hits and three walks while striking out 23. By runs scored per game, the Reds have the second-best offense in the NL behind St Louis.

The Phillies are 86-46 on the year after beating the Cincinnati Reds 3-0 last night. They are 40 games over .500 for the first time since 1977 and in first place in the NL East, 7 1/2 games ahead of the Braves.

Lee started the game for the Phillies and went 8 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing six hits and a walk. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out seven.

Up 1-0, he set the Reds down in order in the bottom of the first. He got Brandon Phillips on a line drive to right, Dave Sappelt on a line drive to left and Joey Votto on a ground ball to second.

Both Phillips and Sappelt hit the ball well against Lee in the first, but both into outs.

In the second he got Jay Bruce to ground to first, Miguel Cairo swinging and Drew Stubbs swinging.

Ramon Hernandez stated the third with a single to right. Paul Janish struck out swinging for the first out before the pitcher Dontrelle Willis bunted Hernandez to second with the second. Phillips grounded to short for the third out.

Sappelt reached on an infield single to start the fourth, but was thrown out trying to steal second as Lee struck out Votto. Bruce singled to right before Cairo flew to right to end the inning.

Stubbs reached on an infield single to start the fifth. Hernandez was next and hit a ball to the right of Valdez at short. Valdez made a nice play, fielding in the hole and throwing to second to force Stubbs. Utley sailed his throw to first to try to double-up Hernandez, but it was backed up nicely by Ruiz. Ruiz threw to second and Hernandez was tagged out to complete the double-play. Janish flew to left for the third out.

Up 2-0, Lee set the Reds down in order in the sixth.

He started the seventh up 3-0 and struck out Bruce and Cairo as he set the Reds down in order.

Stubbs singled to left to start the eighth, but Lee got Hernandez on a fly ball to center for the first out and Janish on a fly ball to right for the second. Righty Todd Frazier hit for the pitcher Jose Arredondo and Lee struck him out looking 2-2 to end the inning.

Lee got the first two to start the ninth before Votto doubled to center. Bruce was next and Lee walked him on a 3-2 pitch, bringing the righty Cairo to the plate as the tying run. Lee hit Cairo with an 0-2 pitch that Cairo didn’t try real hard to get out of the way of, loading the bases for the Reds. Madson took over for Lee and lefty Yonder Alonso hit for the righty Stubbs. Madson got Alonso to pop to Polanco in foul territory on a 1-1 pitch to end the game.

After getting Alonso to end last night’s game, lefties are hitting 213/289/267 against Madson for the year, which is worse than the 255/303/324 line for righties.

Madson threw three pitches in the game. Nobody in the pen has thrown more than one day in a row.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Dontrelle Willis went (1) Victorino (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Pence (6) Mayberry (7) Ruiz (8) Valdez. Mayberry starts in left with the lefty on the mound. Ibanez on the bench after going 3-for-5 with a two-run homer the night before. Valdez at short with Rollins on the DL.

Victorino and Polanco walked back-to-back to start the game. Utley hit a ground ball to second with Polanco forced at second for the first out and Victorino moving up to third. Howard hit a ball that Votto handled at first, throwing to second where Utley was forced for the second out as Victorino scored to put the Phils up 1-0. Pence flew to center to leave Howard at first.

Good no strikeout for Howard to bring Victorino home from third with one out.

Ruiz and Valdez singled back-to-back with one out in the second, putting runners on first and second for Lee. Lee bunted, Willis fielded and threw to third, where Ruiz was out but called safe. Victorino popped to Phillips near the first base line for the second out. Polanco grounded back to the pitcher.

No run for the Phils after getting an extra out and loading the bases with one out.

Pence and Mayberry walked back-to-back with two outs in the third. Ruiz flew to right to leave both runners stranded.

The Phils went in order in the fourth.

Lee grounded to second for the second out and didn’t run it out. He took a couple of steps towards first and waved his hand at the ball as Phillips fielded and threw to first.

Willis struck out Polanco, Utley and Howard in the fifth.

Pence led off the sixth and hit a 2-1 pitch out to center, putting the Phils up 2-0. Mayberry struck out behind him before Ruiz singled into center. Valdez grounded to third with Ruiz forced at second for the second out and took second on a wild

Victorino started the seventh with a walk and moved to third when Polanco followed with a single to center. Utley was next and hit a ground ball to short with Polanco forced at second for the first out and Victorino scoring to put the Phils up 3-0. Utley was running when Howard his a soft ground ball to short. Janish had moved to cover second and made a nice play, coming back to get the ball and then throwing to first to get Howard for the second out. It brought Pence to the plate with Utley at second and two. Righty Jose Arredondo came in to pitch to Pence and got him on a fly ball to left to set the Phillies down.

Mayberry and Ruiz singled back-to-back to start the eighth, putting men on first and second for Valdez. Valdez hit into a double-play, which left Mayberry at third with two down. Lee grounded to short for the third out.

Polanco singled with one out in the ninth, but Utley and Howard both flew out behind him.

Victorino was 0-for-3 with two walks in the game. He’s 3-for-his-last-21.

Polanco 2-for-4. He’s 2-for-his-last-13.

Utley 0-for-5 with an RBI and four men left on base. 7-for-his-last-35.

Howard 0-for-5 with an RBI. 5-for-his-last-34 with 14 strikeouts.

Pence 1-for-3 with a walk and a home run. He has homered in two straight games and seven times in his last 95 plate appearances. He’s slugging .573 in his 119 plate appearances with the Phils. He hit 340/413/596 in August.

Mayberry was 1-for-3 with a walk. He goes 2-for-15 to end the month, but hit 296/356/685 in 59 plate appearances in August.

Ruiz was 3-for-4. 304/383/412 in his last 232 plate appearances.

Valdez 1-for-4. Since August 22, when Rollins went on the DL, Valdez has hit 316/333/579 in 21 plate appearances (6-for-19 with a walk, two doubles and a home run).

Worley (9-1, 2.65) faces righty Mike Leake (11-8, 4.04) this afternoon. Leake threw to a 5.70 ERA in his first nine appearances of the year, which included three relief outings. Since then he’s made 17 starts in which he’s thrown to a 3.49 ERA with a 1.18 ratio. The Phillies have gone 14-2 in the games that Worley has started this season — if that’s not the biggest surprise of the year it makes the photo. The Phils have won 12 straight games that Worley has started. Worley has been charged with more than one run in just four of those 12 and more than two runs in two of the 12.

Joe Blanton is expected to pitch for Lakewood on Friday.


Doc apparently a specialist in whatever the opposite of back pain is

Front pain? Back painlessness?

Roy Halladay finally got a chance to start last night, making his first appearance for the Phils since August 21. It went well. Halladay threw seven shutout innings and hit a three-run double of his own as the Phils won 9-0.

Howard homered twice for the Phillies in the game. Ibanez returned to the lineup and went 3-for-5 with a two-run homer. Pence added a home run of his own and is slugging .550 in 115 plate appearances with the Phils.

In the first two games of the set, the starting pitchers for the Phils have combined to allow a run on four hits and two walks over 13 innings while striking out 16.

The Phillies are 85-46 on the year after beating the Cincinnati Reds 9-0 last night. Thirty-nine games above .500 ties their best mark for the year. I believe that the last time the Phils were 40 games above .500 was October 2, 1977 (the last day of the 1977 season). The Phillies are in first place in the NL East, 7 1/2 games ahead of the Braves.

Halladay got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing a double, a single and two walks over seven shutout innings. He struck out nine.

Brandon Phillips singled to right to start the bottom of the first. Halladay got Edgar Renteria on a fly ball to center for the first out before walking Joey Votto on five pitches. It put men on first and second for Jay Bruce and Halladay struck him out swinging 3-2 for the second out. Miguel Cairo grounded back to the mound to leave both runners stranded.

Halladay struck out Fred Lewis and Ryan Hanigan in a 1-2-3 second after getting Drew Stubbs to fly to center for the first out.

He struck pitcher Bronson Arroyo out looking to start the third. Phillips and Renteria both grounded out behind Arroyo.

Halladay had a 2-0 lead when he threw a 1-2-3 fourth.

He set the Reds down in order again in the fifth.

Up 6-0, he got Alonso and Phillips on ground balls before striking Renteria out looking in the sixth.

He started the seventh with an 8-0 lead. Votto led off and doubled to right. Bruce was next and Halladay hit him with a 1-2 pitch, putting men on first and second. Cairo struck out swinging before Stubbs walked on a 3-2 pitch that sure looked like a strike to me to load the bases. Righty Todd Frazier hit for the pitcher Logan Ondrusek and Halladay struck him out looking for the second out. Hanigan grounded to third to leave the bases loaded.

Lidge started the eighth and walked Alonso on a 3-2 pitch. Phillips grounded to short with Alonso forced at second for the first out. Renteria lined to Wilson at short for the second, but Votto followed that with a single to right that moved Phillips to third. Lidge struck Bruce out swinging 2-2 to leave runners at the corners.

Again with the walks for Lidge. He has now walked nine in ten innings for the Phils this year.

Schwimer started the ninth with a 9-0 lead. Dave Sappelt led off with a single to left. Righty Paul Janish hit for the pitcher Sam LeCure. Schwimer got Janish on a fly ball to right for the first out. Sappelt took second without a throw before Frazier struck out swinging. Hanigan flew to left to end the game with Sappelt on second.

Third career appearance for Schwimer and the first in which he hasn’t been charged with a run.

Lidge threw 15 pitches in the game and Schwimer 14. Neither was pitching more than one day in a row.

The Phillie lineup against righty Bronson Arroyo went (1) Victorino (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Pence (6) Ibanez (7) Ruiz (8) Valdez. Ibanez returns to the lineup in left. Valdez plays short with Rollins on the DL.

Utley singled with two outs in the first, but Howard flew to left behind him.

The Phils went in order in the second and again in the third.

Utley walked with two outs in the fourth. Howard was next and he hit an 0-1 pitch out to right, putting the Phils up 2-0. Pence grounded to short before Ibanez singled to left. Ruiz walked behind Ibanez, putting men on first and second for Valdez. Valdez grounded to third to set the Phillies down.

Lefties came into the game hitting 324/376/590 against Arroyo for the season. The lefties on the Phils fared pretty well against him in the third, with Utley getting on board for Howard’s homer and Ibanez singling later in the frame.

Victorino doubled to left with one out in the fifth. Polanco was next and flew to center with Victorino tagging and moving up to third with two down. Utley popped to Cairo in foul territory for the third out.

Howard struck out looking to start the sixth. Pence was next and he hit a 1-2 pitch out to right-center, putting the Phils on top 3-0. Ibanez and Ruiz followed that with back-to-back singles, putting men on first and second with one out. Valdez reached on an error by Cairo and the bases were loaded. Halladay lined the first pitch of his at-bat into right and the ball rolled into the corner, clearing the bases and putting the Phils up 6-0. Victorino fouled out to Votto and Polanco grounded to third to leave Halladay stranded at second.

Halladay now has nine career RBI, three of which came on that swing.

Pence singled to left with two outs in the seventh. Ibanez got ahead 3-0 and hit a 3-1 pitch out to right, extending the lead to 8-0. Ruiz flew to right for the third out.

Victorino walked with two outs in the eighth, but Polanco flew to center behind him.

Utley grounded to first to start the ninth. Howard was next, facing righty Sam LeCure, and hit a 3-2 pitch out to right for his second homer of the game, putting the Phils up 9-0. Pence and Ibanez both grounded out behind him.

Victorino was 1-for-4 with a double and a walk in the game. He’s just 3-for-his-last-18, but hitting 326/392/620 in August.

Polanco 0-for-5 and left three men on base. 1-for-his-last-13. 227/283/264 in 298 plate appearances since the end of April.

Utley 1-for-4 with a walk. 244/303/354 over his last 89 plate appearances.

Howard 2-for-5 with two home runs and three RBI. 3-for-his-last-16 with three home runs and seven strikeouts.

Pence 2-for-5 with a home run. 330/400/550 in 115 plate appearances with the Phillies.

Ibanez 3-for-5 with a two-run homer in his return to the lineup.

Ruiz 1-for-3 with a walk. He’s 2-for-his-last-10.

Valdez 0-for-4 with a strikeout and four men left on base. 280/327/500 in 55 plate appearances in August.

Cliff Lee (14-7, 2.71) faces lefty Dontrelle Willis (0-3, 4.10) tonight. Willis had made nine starts for the Reds this year and has given up more than three runs in just one of them. He’s been very tough on lefties (184/238/289), but righties have hit 298/377/404 against him for the year. He threw 123 pitches in his most recent start (August 26 against the Nats). Lee has allowed two runs in 31 innings over his last starts, striking out 32 while opponents have hit .163 against him.

This says the Phillies have traded for John Bowker, sending Schwimer back to Triple-A. The left-handed hitting Bowker turned 28 in July and has a career 237/289/390 line. He went 4-for-17 with the Pirates this season. He has hardly ever faced lefties, hitting just .132 against them in 57 career plate appearances. He has a 248/303/415 line against right-handed pitching.


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