Tag: Raul Ibanez

Phils get no relief from line drives or their bullpen

The Phils got more scoreless innings from Hamels yesterday, just not enough of them. He had to leave the game after the fourth after Adrian Gonzalez smashed a line drive off of his right hand. The pen didn’t exactly shine after his exit as Herndon and Carpenter combined to allow five runs in the next four innings, turning a scoreless game into a 5-0 lead for Boston. Howard blasted a two-run homer in the ninth, his 17th of the year and his 17th against right-handed pitching, but it wasn’t enough and the Red Sox held on to salvage a game in the set.

If the names of the guys appearing for the Phils in relief these days are starting to concern you, the results should as well. The bullpen was a huge strength of the team in the early going, but they’ve run into trouble lately and been terrible in three of the last five games they’ve been called on to pitch. In the first 75 games of the season, the bullpen combined to pitch to a 2.80 ERA with a 1.31 ratio. In the last seven games they’ve thrown to a 7.94 ERA with a 1.82 ratio. They didn’t pitch at all in two of those seven games thanks to complete games by Halladay and Lee. In three of the last five games they have pitched they’ve allowed runs — in two of the three, including yesterday’s, they were hit real hard. The Start Log tracks bullpen performance by game and starting pitcher.

The Phillies are 51-31 on the year after losing to the Boston Red Sox 5-2 last night. The Phils take the series two games to one. They are in first place in the NL East, four games ahead of the Braves.

Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went four scoreless innings before leaving the game after taking a line drive off his non-pitching hand. He allowed two singles and two walks in the game and dropped his ERA on the year to 2.41.

This article from the Phillies web site says he could miss his next start, which would bring the rotation down to two of its original members (Halladay and Lee).

Jacoby Ellsbury was the first batter of the game and he hit a ball slowly towards short. Rollins charged and threw to first, but Ellsbury beat it out for a single. Darnell McDonald was next and Hamels got him to hit a double-play ball to third, clearing the bases. Hamels struck Adrian Gonzalez out swinging 3-2 for the third out.

After the strikeout, Gonzalez was 1-for-8 in the series.

Josh Reddick singled to center with two outs in the second. Hamels got Drew Sutton to ground to short for the third out.

Hamels set the Red Sox down in order in the third, making a nice play to snag a line drive by Marco Scutaro for the first out.

He got McDonald on a fly ball to left to start the fourth. Gonzalez was next and he hit a line drive off of the palm of Hamels’s glove hand. Hamels picked up the ball and threw to first to get Gonzalez for the second out, but was obviously hurting from the ball hit off of his hand. He stayed in to get Pedroia on a ground ball to third for the third out.

Herndon started the fifth and got Varitek on a ground ball to short for the first out before Reddick hit a ball to right that got passed Francisco and to the wall for a triple. Drew Sutton was next and he singled to right, scoring Reddick to put Boston up 1-0. Scutaro followed that with another single, which moved Sutton to third. Herndon struck the pitcher Lester out swinging for the second out, but Ellsbury delivered a two-out single into left. Sutton scored, 2-0, and Scutaro took second. McDonald grounded to short to leave the runners stranded.

Herndon was back for the sixth. He got Gonzalez and Pedroia on a pair of ground balls for the first two outs, but Varitek was next and hit a 3-2 pitch out to right, putting Boston on top 3-0. Reddick grounded to second for the third out.

Herndon hadn’t been charged with a run in seven June appearances coming into the game, but that didn’t go well. He gave up three runs on five hits in two innings.

Didn’t go well for Carpenter, either. He made his first appearance of the year for the Phils when he started the seventh. Sutton and Scutaro started the inning with back-to-back singles, putting men on first and third for Lester. Lester tried to bunt Scutaro to second, but struck out fouling off strike three for the first out. Carpenter struck Ellsbury out looking 2-2 for the second out and lefty JD Drew hit for McDonald and lined to center to leave both runners stranded.

Carpenter struck Gonzalez out to start the eighth and things were looking just ducky. But. Pedroia hit an 0-2 pitch out to right. 4-0. Varitek was next and he hit his second homer of the day, hitting a 2-0 pitch out to right to make it 5-0. Carpenter got Reddick on a fly ball to right and struck out Sutton to end the frame.

Mathieson pitched the ninth with the Phils still down five runs. He got the first two before Ellsbury and Drew singled back-to-back. It put men on first and third for Gonzalez and Mathieson walked him on four pitches to load the bases. Mathieson kept the Red Sox off the board, getting Pedroia to pop to Utley on a 3-2 pitch to leave the runners stranded.

Third outing of the year for Mathieson. He hasn’t been charged with a run, but has allowed seven hits and four walks in three innings.

Herndon threw 46 pitches in the game. Carpenter 39 and Mathieson 26.

Five innings from the pen on the day before Kendrick’s start probably wasn’t what the Phillies were looking for.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Jon Lester went (1) Rollins (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Victorino (6) Francisco (7) Ibanez (8) Ruiz. Brown on the bench with the righty Francisco in right. Francisco came into the game hitting 209/329/328 against lefties for the season. Ruiz catches the day game with the lefty Lester pitching after the lefty Schneider started on Wednesday night with the righty Lackey on the mound for Boston. Ruiz also had terrible numbers against lefties for the season coming into the game — 196/328/235 with two extra-base hits (both doubles) in 61 plate appearances.

The Phils went in order in the first.

Howard started the second with a walk. Victorino flew to left for the first out before Francisco grounded to third for the second with Howard moving up to second. Ibanez struck out swinging to leave him there.

The Phils went in order in the third.

Utley singled with one out in the fourth and stoles second. Howard flew to left and Victorino flew to center to leave him there.

Down 2-0, the Phils went in order in the fifth.

Down 3-0 they went in order in the sixth. Martinez hit for Herndon and fouled out to Gonzalez for the first out.

Howard singled to center with one out in the seventh and moved to second when Victorino followed with a walk. Francisco flew to center for the second out and Ibanez struck out again, leaving both runners stranded.

The Phils were down 5-0 when Daniel Bard set them down in order in the eighth. Gload hit for Carpenter and the righty Bard got him on a ground ball to first for the second out.

Polanco singled off of righty Bobby Jenks to start the ninth. Utley popped to third for the first out, but Howard was next and he hit an 0-1 pitch out to right, getting the Phils on the board at 5-2. Victorino walked on five pitches behind Howard and righty Jonathan Papelbon came in to pitch to Francisco. Victorino stole second before moving to third when Francisco grounded to second for the second out. Ibanez struck out looking to end the game and top off a day where he went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts and left four men on base.

Seventeen homers for Howard, all of which have come against righties. Francisco stays in to hit against the righty Papelbon with the lefty Brown presumably available.

Rollins was 0-for-4 in the game and 1-for-11 in the three-game set. He’s 5-for-his-last-28 and has gone 0-fer in five of the last seven games. 254/327/368 on the year. He’s on-basing .259 against lefties for the year.

Polanco 1-for-4 in the game and 3-for-12 with three singles in the series. 288/339/363 on the year. 232/284/281 since the end of April. He has 15 extra-base hits in 340 plate appearances for the year, which is about 4.4% and the worst mark for his career.

Utley 1-for-4 with a strikeout. 4-for-10 with a triple and a walk in the series. 280/381/449 for the year. 325/424/532 over his last 93 plate appearances.

Howard 2-for-3 with a walk and a two-run homer. 3-for-10 with two walks in the series. 254/354/488 for the year. 260/330/354 against lefties for the year.

Victorino was 0-for-2 and walked twice. 2-for-9 with a double, a homer and two walks in the series. He’s been the best hitter for the Phils so far this year with a 289/359/504 line. His OPS against lefties for the year dropped below 1.200, though. He’s at 1.170 now.

Francisco was 0-for-4, left four men on base and didn’t look real good in the outfield in his only action of the series. 220/336/351 on the year. I’d keep giving him some starts against lefties, but his numbers against lefties are worse than his numbers against righties for the season — 200/317/314 against left-handed pitching for the season. Brown did not play yesterday, but was 2-for-6 with a double and a home run in the series. 214/294/411 for the year. 165/258/354 in 89 plate appearances in June. After hitting .210 in 77 plate appearances in 2010, he’s hitting 214 in his first 126 plate appearances in 2011.

Ibanez 0-for-4 with three strikeouts and four men left on base in stark contrast to his game two heroics. 3-for-10 with a double and a home run in the series. 235/285/393 for the year. The .636 OPS for Phillies left fielders for the year is 14th-best of the 16 NL teams. The .292 on-base percentage is 16th of 16.

Ruiz 0-for-3 in the game and 0-for-7 in the series. He’s 1-for-his-last-14 and hitting 243/348/333 for the year. I still like the Schneider against the righty and Ruiz against the lefty in the day/night game thing, but Ruiz is now hitting 189/317/226 against lefties for the year with two extra-base hits, both doubles, in 63 plate appearances.

Kyle Kendrick (4-4, 3.23) faces lefty Ricky Romero (7-7, 2.74) today. Romero has a 1.95 ERA and a 1.08 ratio over his last nine starts. Lefties have had more luck against him than righties for the season — righties are hitting just 208/273/336 against him. Kendrick will be making his sixth start of the season and has thrown just 23 innings in his first five starts (4.6 innings per start). He’s 2-2 with a 3.91 ERA as a starter this season. Lefties are hitting just .234 against him for the year, but slugging .468. Ten of the 18 hits that Kendrick has allowed to left-handed batters this year have gone for extra-base hits, five doubles, two triples and three home runs.

This says that Oswalt will see a spine surgeon today for a second opinion on his back and that he could return by August. It also says that Madson may not be ready to return on Monday.


Ibanez leaves the Phils hopeful he’s willing to meet them halfway

Raul Ibanez celebrated the halfway point of what’s been a miserable season for him by driving in all the Phillie runs last night. Ibanez knocked Victorino in from second with a single early and broke a 1-1 tie with a solo homer in the seventh as the Phils topped Boston 2-1.

Vance Worley handled the pitching for the Phils, with a big assist to the new back of the bullpen. Worley went seven strong frames before the Phils got a perfect eighth from Stutes and a perfect ninth from Bastardo.

The Phillies are 4-1 in their last five and have allowed a total of six runs in those five games. Four of those runs were allowed in Saturday’s game against Oakland. In eight of their last ten games they have allowed less than three runs.

The Phillies are 51-30 on the year after beating the Boston Red Sox 2-1 last night. They still haven’t buried the Braves, who keep on winning as well. Atlanta is 8-2 in their last ten and remain 4 1/2 games behind the Phils in second place in the NL East. The Mets are in third place, two games over .500 and 9 1/2 games behind the Phillies.

Worley got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing a run on five hits and two walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out five and dropped his ERA on the year to 2.57. The Phils are now 5-2 in the games Worley has started for the year — that’s a better winning percentage than they have with any other starter except Halladay (14-3 in Halladay’s starts).

Worley set Boston down in order in the first. He knocked Dustin Pedroia down before striking him out on a pitch on the outside part of the plate for the second out.

Pitching with a 1-0 lead, he struck out David Ortiz and Jarrod Saltalamacchia in a 1-2-3 second.

Josh Reddick started the third with a single to left, but Worley got the next three behind him to leave Reddick at first. Pitcher John Lackey tried to bunt him to second with the second out, but got behind 0-2 and struck out looking.

Pedroia started the fourth with a single, but Worley got Adrian Gonzalez to hit into a double-play behind him. Worley walked Kevin Youkilis in an eleven-pitch at-bat, but got Ortiz on a fly ball to right to leave Youkilis at first.

Reddick singled again with one out in the fifth. Worley got Marco Scutaro to fly to center for the second out. He got ahead of Lackey 0-2, but Lackey doubled to left-center on a 3-2 pitch, scoring Scutaro to tie the game at 1-1. Jacoby Ellsbury flew to center to leave Lackey at second.

Lackey came into the game 3-for-35 (.086) at the plate for his career. He smashed that ball, though.

Gonzalez singled to center with one out in the sixth. Youkilis was next and hit a ground ball to third, which Polanco fielded and went to second with to force Gonzalez for the second out. Ortiz flew to left to end the frame.

Worley walked Salty to start the seventh, but got the next three hitters behind him. With two outs and Reddick on first, Lackey hit for himself and grounded to third for the third out.

Stutes pitched the eighth with the Phils up 2-1 and set Boston down in order. He got Ellsbury on a fly ball to right, Pedroia on popup that Polanco handled in foul territory and Gonzalez on a ground ball to second.

Golly. Stutes bounces back nicely against some good hitters after being charged with a pair of runs in an inning against the A’s in his last time out on Saturday.

Bastardo came on for the save in the ninth. Youkilis led off with a popup into shallow right-center, which turned into an adventure with Brown and Victorino both playing very deep. Utley handled it for the first out, though. Ortiz popped to Rollins in shallow left for the second out and Salty fouled out to Polanco to end the game.

For Bastardo it was his 13th straight appearance in which he was not charged with a run. In those outings he’s thrown 11 innings, allowing one hit and five walks.

Stutes threw 12 pitches and Bastardo ten. Nobody in the pen has thrown more than one day in a row.

The Phillies lineup against righty John Lackey went (1) Rollins (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Victorino (6) Ibanez (7) Brown (8) Schneider. The Phils play a day game against a lefty today. The lefty Schneider hits against the righty in this game and Ruiz, I assume, will start today against the lefty.

Polanco and Utley singled back-to-back with one out in the first, putting men on first and second for Howard. Howard hit into a double-play to turn the Phils away.

Eighth double-play that Howard has hit into for the season. Last year he hit into a career-high 14.

Victorino led off the second with a double the opposite way into left and came in to score when Ibanez followed with a single, putting the Phils up 1-0. Ibanez stole second as Brown struck out looking for the first out. Schneider fouled out to Youkilis at third for the second out and Worley grounded to third to leave Ibanez stranded.

The Phils went in order in the third.

Ibanez doubled with two outs in the fourth, but was left stranded at second when Brown grounded to first.

The game was tied at 1-1 when the Phils went in order in the fifth.

Utley walked with one out in the sixth and stole second. Howard struck out for the second out and Victorino grounded to second.

Ibanez led off the seventh and hit an 0-1 pitch from Lackey out to right, putting the Phils up 2-1. Brown and Schneider went down behind him before Ruiz hit for Worley and flew to center to end the inning.

Rollins started the eighth with a single, but Polanco hit into a double-play behind him. Utley hit Lackey’s first pitch high off the wall in right for a triple. Lefty Franklin Morales took over for Lackey and got Howard on a fly ball to center to leave Utley at third.

Fourth man left on base in the game for Howard.

Rollins was 1-for-4 with a strikeout in the game. He’s 1-for-7 in the series so far.

Polanco 1-for-4. He’s 4-for-his-last-15.

Utley 2-for-3 with a walk and a triple. Third triple for Utley in the season in just 136 plate appearances. His career high is six, but that came in 2005 when he got 628 plate appearances.

Howard 0-for-4, struck out twice and left four men on base. He’s 1-for-his-last-16.

Victorino 1-for-3 with a double. His .508 slugging percentage leads the team. The Phillies only have four players slugging .400 or better for the year — Howard at .476, Utley .456 and Brown .411. Their .375 slugging percentage for the team is tenth-best in the NL.

Ibanez 3-for-3 with a double, a home run and drove in both of the runs that the Phillies scored. First home run in June for Ibanez.

Brown was 0-for-3 and struck out twice, dropping his line on the year to 214/294/411.

Schneider 0-for-3 in his second start since returning from the DL. He’s gone 0-for-7 in those games and is hitting 153/194/288 for the season.

Cole Hamels (9-4, 2.49) faces lefty Jon Lester (9-4, 3.66) this afternoon. Lester has thrown to a 2.45 ERA over his last three starts. He’s been tough on lefties, who are hitting 218/277/299 against him, but righties have fared better with a 255/342/437 line. Hamels has a 2.06 ERA in his last 15 outings.

This says that Lidge could start a rehab assignment at Double-A or Triple-A next week.


Lights out, outer and outest

The Phils cruised to a 5-0 win last night behind the fifth straight outstanding start by Cliff Lee. Lee threw a complete-game shutout, holding the Red Sox to two hits and two walks, and was backed by two-run homers from Brown and Victorino.

It continues an amazing run for Lee. After his third consecutive complete-game shutout, he has now thrown 32 scoreless innings in a row. In five starts in June, he’s allowed one run on 21 hits and eight walks in 42 innings (0.21 ERA and an 0.69 ratio).

Lee is the first Phillie to throw three consecutive shutouts since 1950. Grover Cleveland Alexander holds the team record for consecutive scoreless innings — he threw 41 2/3 in 1911.

The Phillies are 50-30 on the year after beating the Boston Red Sox 5-0 last night. They lead the NL East, 4 1/2 games ahead of the second-place Braves.

Lee got the start for the Phillies and threw a complete game, allowing two hits and two walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double. He struck out five.

Lee has thrown an average of 117 pitches over his last five starts. In his last nine starts he’s been over 110 pitches eight times and over 120 three times.

He set Boston down in order in the first.

He walked Kevin Youkilis to start the second, but left him stranded there. He struck Darnell McDonald out looking, got Jason Varitek on a fly ball to center and then got Mike Cameron looking.

Lee started the third up 2-0 and set Boston down in order.

In the fourth he got Dustin Pedroia on a fly ball to right, Adrian Gonzalez on a popup to second and Youkilis looking.

He got McDonald, Varitek and Cameron in the fifth.

The Phils led 3-0 when Lee started the sixth. Marco Scutaro led off and lined a single to left. Beckett was next and was looking to bunt. Having just finished screaming at the home plate ump about balls and strikes from the bench after the end of the bottom of the fifth, Beckett took strike one and fouled off strike two. He swung away 1-2 and hit a double-play ball to Rollins. Jacoby Ellsbury was next and smashed a ball to first, but Howard handled it and took it to first himself for the third out.

Up 5-0, Lee walked Pedroia to start the seventh. Adrian Gonzalez flew to center for the first out and Youkilis to hit into a double-play behind him.

Seems like this is the place where one should mention that you shouldn’t walk the leadoff hitter up 5-0, but the 30 scoreless innings in a row at this point thing is compelling.

McDonald lined a double to left to start the eighth. Varitek was next and smashed a ball towards short, but Rollins took it on one hop and Howard scooped the ball at first for the first out with McDonald holding. Lee struck Cameron out looking for the second out and Scutaro grounded to third for the third.

Switch-hitter Drew Sutton hit for pitcher Bobby Jenks and struck out to start the ninth. Ellsbury grounded to third for the second out and Pedroia lined to third to end the game.

The Phillies lineup against righty Josh Beckett went (1) Rollins (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Victorino (6) Ibanez (7) Brown (8) Ruiz. Victorino hits fifth with Polanco second, which makes a lot more sense to me.

The Phils went in order in the first.

Howard started the second with a single to center. Victorino was next and grounded to short with Howard forced at second for the first out. Beckett threw the ball away trying to pick Victorino off of first, allowing Victorino to move up to second. Brown hit a 2-2 pitch out to center, putting the Phils up 2-0. Ruiz grounded to short for the third out.

Rollins walked with one out in the third and stole second. Polanco and Utley both flew to center to leave him there.

The Phils went in order in the fourth.

Brown doubled to left to start the fifth. He went to third on a deep fly ball by Ruiz and scored when Lee followed that with a fly ball to left for the second out. 3-0. Rollins grounded to first to end the inning.

Polanco started the sixth with a single and Utley bunted him to second. Howard got ahead 3-0, but flew to right for the second out. Victorino hit a 3-1 pitch out to right, putting the Phils up 5-0. Ibanez grounded to first to set the Phillies down.

Hope we don’t see Utley bunting the runners along that much.

The Phils went in order in the seventh.

Utley reached on an infield single with two outs in the eighth. Howard was next and walked 3-2, putting men on first and second for Victorino. Victorino struck out looking at a 2-2 pitch that looked outside to me. I think he thought so too.

Rollins was 0-for-3 with a walk in the game. He’s 4-for-his-last-17. All four of the hits came on Sunday against Oakland.

Polanco 1-for-4 with a strikeout. He’s 3-for-8 with a double over the last two games, but hitting 231/286/282 in 218 plate appearances since the end of April. He’s on pace to walk a career-high 53 times.

Utley was 1-for-3. He’s 7-for-his-last-20 with seven singles. His last extra-base hit came on June 15.

Howard 1-for-3 with a walk. He’s 1-for-his-last-12 with four walks.

Victorino 1-for-4 with a two-run homer. 342/405/605 over his last 85 plate appearances. Didn’t happen last night, but he is pounding left-handed pitching this year to the tune of 353/459/745. He’s been better against lefties for a while now, but doesn’t usually put up a 1.200 OPS against them.

Ibanez 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He’s 1-for-his-last-22 and has awful numbers for the year against both righties and lefties. His home/road splits are dramatic, though: 278/324/468 at home and 167/227/258 on the road.

Brown was 2-for-3 with a double and a two-run homer. He’s 4-for-his-last-9 and 5-for-his-last-26.

Ruiz 0-for-3. He’s 2-for-his-last-14. Again, not a factor last night, but he’s hitting 196/328/235 against lefties for the year.

Vance Worley (2-1, 2.83) faces righty John Lackey (5-6, 7.36) tonight in game two of the series. Lackey threw to an 8.01 ERA in his first seven starts of the season and hit the DL in mid-May with a right elbow strain. He returned in June and was at least a little better, throwing to a 5.03 ERA in his next three starts before allowing five runs in 3 1/3 innings to the Padres in his most recent start. He’s been bad all over — at home and away, against righties and lefties. For the year he’s allowing hits and walks both a career high levels and striking out just 5.5 batters per nine innings, which is the worst mark for his career. Worley will be making his seventh start with the Phils this year. The Phils have gone 4-2 in his starts so far and all but one, a May 29 mess he pitched against the Mets, have been pretty good. He pitched well against Oakland in his most recent start, holding the A’s to one hit and four walks over six shutout innings. He’s walked ten of the 83 left-handed batters he’s faced this season.


Jason and the who?

Mariners, apparently.

The Phils dropped two of three to the Mariners in Seattle this weekend. After splitting the first two games, Jason Vargas flummoxed the Phils yesterday, holding them to three singles and a pair of walks while throwing a complete game shutout.

The offense has clearly slowed for the Phils over the past four games. They’ve gone 2-2 in those games, but scored just ten runs. Polanco didn’t start yesterday’s game and is hitting 233/279/285 since the end of April. Francisco and Ibanez were the corner outfielders for the Phils on Opening Day — Ibanez leads that duo with a .402 slugging percentage and there aren’t a whole lot of signs yet that Domonic Brown is going to bail the Phillies out in right. After going 1-for-8 in the series and 5-for-his-last-41, Brown is hitting 220/294/418 for the year in 102 plate appearances.

The Phillies lost the series opener 4-2, ending their win streak at seven. Michael Pineda took a no-hitter and a 3-0 lead into the sixth. Victorino broke up the no-hitter with a two-out single that sent Rollins, who had walked, to third. Utley followed that with another single, which scored Rollins and cut the lead to 3-1. The Mariners extended the lead to 4-1 with a double and a single off of the Phils’ starter Oswalt in the seventh. Victorino homered in the eighth to make it 4-2, but that’s as close as the Phillies would get.

On Saturday the Phils got good pitching and a huge day from Shane Victorino to win 5-1. Worley started the game for the Phils and allowed just one run over five innings. He was backed by Stutes, Bastardo and Madson, who combined to throw four scoreless innings in relief. Felix Hernandez started the seventh with a 1-0 lead, but the Phils scored a pair of runs on a two-run double by Victorino to take the lead. Victorino added a two-run homer off of Jamey Wright in the ninth to make it 4-1, capping a day where he went 3-for-4 with a double, a triple a home run, a walk and four RBI.

Seattle won yesterday’s game 2-0 behind a great start by Vargas.

The Phillies are 45-28 on the year after losing 2-0 to the Seattle Mariners yesterday afternoon. Seattle take the three-game set two games to one. The Phils remain in first place in the NL East. They lead the second place Braves by five games.

Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went 6 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a triple. He struck out six and didn’t walk a batter.

Hamels allowed just two base-runners in the first five innings of the game. Justin Smoak singled to left with two outs in the first, but was left at first when Miguel Olivo followed and grounded to Utley. Franklin Gutierrez singled to left with two outs in the second, but Hamels struck Mike Carp out behind him to leave him at first.

Seattle didn’t put a runner on base in the third, fourth or fifth.

In the fourth inning, Hamels struck Olivo out swinging 0-2 for the 1,000th strikeout of his career.

The game was still scoreless when Hamels started the sixth. He got Chone Figgins on a ground ball to short for the first out. Ichiro was next and hit a ball to first that Howard deflected on a bad hop, but didn’t handle. Ichiro was safe with a single and moved to second when Brendan Ryan followed and grounded to short for the second out. It brought Smoak to the plate and he hit a 1-0 pitch to left, which dropped between Martinez and Rollins for a single. Ichiro scored and Seattle led 1-0. Olivo moved Smoak to second with a single, but Hamels got Greg Halman on a ground ball to third for the third out.

Dustin Ackley started the seventh with a triple to right. Gutierrez grounded to short with Ackley holding for the first out, but lefty Adam Kennedy hit for the lefty Carp and blooped a single to left. Ackley scored and Seattle led 2-0. Contreras took over for Hamels and got Figgins to hit into a double-play to end the inning.

Herndon pitched the eighth. He gave up a leadoff single to Ichiro and Ryan bunted him to second with the first out. Herndon walked the switch-hitter Smoak intentionally and got Olivo to hit into a double-play behind him.

Neither Herndon or Contreras has pitched more than one day in a row. Herndon threw 16 pitches, Contreras five.

The Phillies lineup against left Jason Vargas went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Francisco (6) Ruiz (7) Ibanez (8) Valdez (9) Martinez. Francisco in right with Brown on the bench. Ibanez is the DH. Valdez plays third with Polanco on the bench. Martinez in left with Ibanez DHing. Martinez should never, ever start a game in left unless a whole bunch of people are hurt. Interleague play DH games don’t do much for the case of having Martinez on the team.

Utley struck out with two outs on the first, but reached base when strike three wasn’t handled. Howard moved him to second with a single to left and they both moved up on a wild pitch, putting men on second and third for Francisco. Francisco hit a ball into shallow left-center, but Halman made a sliding catch to leave both runners stranded.

Valdez walked with two outs in the second, but Martinez struck out behind him

The Phils went in order in the third.

Francisco singled to left with one out in the fourth and moved to second when Ruiz followed with a walk. Ibanez was next and hit a soft liner to third for the second out. Ruiz was oddly way off first and doubled-off to end the frame.

Vargas set the Phils down in order in the fifth and again in the sixth.

The Phils were down 1-0 when he set Francisco, Ruiz and Ibanez down in order in the seventh.

They were down 2-0 when he set Valdez, Martinez and Rollins down in order in the eighth.

Howard singled to center with two outs in the ninth. It brought Francisco to the plate as the tying run, but he flew to center to end the game.

Rollins was 0-for-4 in the game. 3-for-11 with two walks in the series. 258/332/373 on the season.

Victorino 0-for-4 with a strikeout. 5-for-12 with a double, a triple, two home runs and five RBI in the series. 299/364/513 on the year. 408/463/694 over his last 55 plate appearances.

Utley 0-for-4 with a strikeout. 1-for-11 in the set. 253/364/451 for the year.

Howard 2-for-4 with a strikeout. 4-for-11 with a double and a walk in the series. 256/348/493 on the year.

Francisco 1-for-4 and left three men on base. 2-for-7 with a walk in the set. 218/341/362 on the year. Brown didn’t play yesterday but was 1-for-8 with a double in the series. He’s hitting 220/294/418 for the year.

Ruiz 0-for-2 with a walk. 1-for-9 with a walk in the series. 238/354/323 on the year.

Ibanez 0-for-3 with a strikeout. 3-for-11 with three singles in the series. 243/292/402 for the year.

Valdez 0-for-2 with a walk in his only action of the series. 250/292/316 on the year. Polanco was 0-for-8 with three strikeouts in the series. 233/279/285 since the end of April. 2-for-his-last-20 and hitting 295/342/375 for the year.

Martinez 0-for-3 and struck out twice. He’s hitting 195/214/242 on the year. Of the 218 NL players with 50 plate appearances, his .457 OPS is 213th and his .215 on-base percentage is 214th.

No game today. At St Louis tomorrow.

Brian Schneider has gone 4-for-10 in three rehab games at Reading. He is hoping to be active for Friday’s game.


Don’t be a stranger

After four whirlwind games, the Florida Marlins are finally leaving town. They’ll be welcome back whenever they want to come, though. The Phils dismantled the Fish in the series, outscoring them 25-6 and winning all four games.

Yesterday it was Cliff Lee who dominated. Lee threw a complete game shutout, allowing two singles and two walks. The Marlins didn’t put a runner on second base in the game.

The Phillies are 44-26 on the year after beating the Florida Marlins 3-0 yesterday afternoon. They sweep the four-game series and have won seven in a row and are 18 games above .500 for the first time on the season.

Lee got the start for the Phillies and threw a complete game shutout, allowing two singles and two walks. He struck out four and dropped his ERA on the year to 3.12. Over his last three starts, he’s allowed one run in 24 innings on 13 hits and five walks.

He got Emilio Bonifacio, Omar Infante and Logan Morrison on three ground balls in the first.

Gaby Sanchez walked on five pitches to start the second. Jose Lopez was next and he flew to center for the first out. Mike Stanton struck out looking for the second. With John Buck at the plate, Sanchez was picked off of first and Howard threw to second where Rollins applied the tag to end the frame.

Lee got Buck on a ground ball he handled himself for the first out in the third. Chris Coghlan flew to center for the second out. Pitcher Javier Vazquez grounded to Lee for the third.

Lee had faced the minimum through three innings and thrown 33 pitches.

In the fourth he got Bonifacio on a popup to Martinez and Infante and Morrison on a pair of ground outs.

Sanchez flew to right and Lopez struck out swinging to start the fifth with the Phils up 1-0. It brought Stanton to the plate and he singled into center, the first hit of the game for the Marlins. Buck flew to right behind him for the third out.

Lee had a 2-0 lead when he started the sixth. He walked Bonifacio with two outs, but got Infante to fly to left to leave him at first.

The Phils led 3-0 when Morrison started the seventh with a single to center. Sanchez flew to left for the first out and Lee got Lopez to hit into a double-play behind him.

Lee struck Stanton and Coghlan out while setting the Marlins down in order in the eighth.

Hanley Ramirez hit for pitcher Ryan Webb to start the ninth and grounded to short for the first out. Bonifacio grounded to third for the second out and Infante popped to Howard in foul territory to end the game.

The Phillies lineup against righty Javier Vazquez went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Polanco (4) Howard (5) Ibanez (6) Ruiz (7) Brown (8) Martinez. Martinez plays second with Utley on the bench after the Phils played a day/night double-header on Wednesday and a day game yesterday. Ibanez hits fifth with Polanco out of the five-hole and hitting third.

Rollins lined to first for the first out in the bottom of the first, but Victorino and Polanco both singled behind him. It put runners on first and third with one down for Howard and Howard struck out swinging. Ibanez walked to load the bases, but Ruiz popped up to Sanchez in foul territory to leave the bases loaded.

Howard strikes out with a runner on third and less than two outs after failing to bring a runner in from third with less than two outs twice in the night game of the double-header the day before.

Lee singled with two outs in the second, but Rollins popped to short behind him.

Victorino led off the third with a single, but Polanco hit into a double-play behind him. Howard drew a two-out walk, but was left at first when Ibanez followed and grounded to second.

Martinez singled with two outs in the fourth. Lee was next and he roped a ball into the gap in right center. Martinez scored from first and the Phils led 1-0. Rollins popped to second for the third out.

Just another of those Martinez/Lee rallies to plate a run for the Phils.

Victorino struck out and Polanco flew to right for the first two outs in the fifth. It brought Howard to the plate and he hit a 1-1 pitch out to left-center, extending the lead to 2-0. Ibanez followed that with a double to left, but Ruiz flew to right to leave him at second.

That’s home run number 15 on the year for Howard, all 15 of which have come against right-handed pitching. He came into the game hitting for a higher average against left-handed pitching for the year (.256 against lefties and .247 against righties), but slugging .547 against righties and .360 against lefties.

Brown started the sixth with a single off of lefty Michael Dunn. He moved to second on a ground out by Martinez and third on a ground out by Lee. Rollins was next and he lined a double to right. Brown scored and the Phils led 3-0. Victorino struck out swinging to leave Rollins at second.

Brown starts a rally with a single off of a lefty. He came in to the game 2-for-14 against lefties for the year. It was his first hit that wasn’t a home run since June 6 against the Dodgers. In 35 plate appearances June 7 to June 15, Brown went 3-for-29 with three homers and six walks.

Ryan Webb set Polanco, Howard and Ibanez down on three ground balls in the seventh.

Webb was back for the eighth and got Ruiz and Brown on ground outs before Martinez flew to left to end the inning.

Rollins was 1-for-4 with an RBI in the game. 5-for-18 with a double, two home runs and seven RBI in the four-game series. He’s hitting 257/330/377 for the year.

Victorino 2-for-4 with two singles and two strikeouts. 8-for-19 with two doubles in the series. 292/359/476 for the year.

Polanco 1-for-4. 2-for-11 with a walk and a double in the set. 303/351/386 for the year. 244/291/299 in 183 plate appearances since the end of April.

Howard 1-for-3 with a walk and a solo homer. 4-for-12 with a double and two homers in the series. He walked four times and drove in four runs. 251/347/494 on the year.

Ibanez 1-for-3 with a double and a walk. 1-for-12 with a walk and a double in the series. 242/293/407 on the year.

Ruiz 0-for-4 and left four men on base. 3-for-11 with two walks in the series. 245/362/335 on the year. He has one extra-base hit in his last 58 plate appearances. He’s hitting .209 and slugging .233 in June.

Brown 1-for-4 with a strikeout. 3-for-15 with two walks and two home runs in the series. He’s hitting 160/263/360 in 57 plate appearances in June and 229/309/434 in 94 plate appearances for the year. Francisco didn’t play yesterday, but went 0-for-3 with two walks, one of which was intentional, in the set. He’s hitting 216/340/365 for the season. 1-for-his-last-14 with seven walks. In his last 22 plate appearances, he has one hit and a .381 on-base percentage. That’s nutty. I don’t know what it means, but I’m pretty sure it’s not good. He’s striking out a lot less this year and walking a lot more, but getting way fewer hits and seeing less of his hits go for extra-bases.

Martinez 1-for-4 in the game and in the series. 203/226/254 in 64 plate appearances for the year. Utley didn’t play in the game, but was 4-for-11 with two doubles, a triple, a home run, a walk and four RBI in the series. He’s hitting 275/383/500 on the year in 94 plate appearances. In his first 47 plate appearances, which came May 23 to June 4, he hit 195/298/293. In most recent 47 plate appearances he has hit 359/468/718.

Oswalt (4-4, 3.14) faces righty Michael Pineda (6-4, 2.72) tonight in Seattle. Pineda turned 22 in January and has made 13 starts for the Mariners in his rookie season. Opponents are hitting just .208 against him and he’s struck out 80 in 82 2/3 innings. Oswalt’s strikeout numbers continue to drop compared to his career numbers, but he has done a good job of keeping lefties from delivering extra-base hits against him. Lefties are hitting 252/316/336 against him for the year so far, compared to their career mark of 261/307/385.

JC Romero was designated for assignment.

The Phils signed 33-year-old righty Tim Redding to a minor league deal. Redding has made 144 career starts with the Astros, Padres, Yankees, Nats and Mets and thrown to a career 4.95 ERA with a 1.49 ratio. He had a good year for the Astros in 2003 and pitched well for the Nats in 2007 in 15 starts. His last action in the majors came with the Mets in 2009. Lefties have hit 284/368/462 against him for his career.


Strike out slinging

Coming off an ugly start, Cliff Lee mowed ‘em down last night, throwing seven shutout innings to pace the Phils to a 3-1 win against the Dodgers. Lee struck out ten in the game and has now registered double-digit strikeouts in six of his 13 starts.

Lee is striking out about 10.3 batters per nine innings this year, which is a huge jump from his career mark of 7.1. In 2008, he won the Cy Young in the American League and struck out 6.9 batters per nine for the Indians.

Led by Lee and his NL-high 100 strikeouts, the Phils lead the league in inducing whiffs. Halladay is second with 97 and Hamels fifth with 82.

The Phillies are 36-24 on the year after beating the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-1 last night.

Lee got the start for the Phillies and went seven shutout innings, allowing seven hits and a walk. All seven of the hits were singles and he struck out ten.

Jamey Carroll was the first batter of the game and he reached on an infield single. Aaron Miles followed that with a single into center that moved Carroll up to second. Marcus Thames followed and hit a double-play ball to second, which left the Dodgers with two down and Carroll on third. Lee struck Matt Kemp out looking 2-2 to leave Carroll at third.

He struck Juan Uribe out swinging for the first out in the second and got Casey Blake on a fly ball to center behind him for the second. Jerry Sands drew a two-out walk, but Lee got Rod Barajas on a fly ball to right for the third out.

The pitcher Ted Lilly grounded to third to start the third. Carroll singled to center behind him before Lee got Miles swinging for the second out. Thames flew to right to leave Carroll at first.

Lee started the fourth with a 2-0 lead. Uribe singled to left with one out, but Lee struck out Blake and Sands, both looking, behind him.

Carroll singled on a ball hit out in front of the plate with two outs in the fifth. Miles moved him to second with a single into center, but Lee struck Thames out swinging to leave both men stranded.

He struck out the side in the sixth, getting Kemp and Uribe swinging and Blake looking. Blake didn’t care for the call and was ejected for arguing balls and strikes.

Sands smashed a ball back up the middle to start the seventh, but Lee, seemingly on purpose, put his body in front of the ball. It hit off him hard, but Lee picked it up and threw to first for the first out. Barajas popped to Polanco for the second out and lefty Tony Gwynn hit for the pitcher Lee. Gwynn singled back up the middle, bringing Carroll to the plate with two outs and a man on first. Gwynn was running on the 3-2 pitch as Carroll grounded to short. Valdez made a nice play, charging the ball and throwing to first to set the Dodgers down.

Bastardo threw a 1-2-3 eighth. He’s been charged with a run in just three of his 25 appearances on the year. He’s walked 12 in 23 innings, which is too many, but allowed just 11 hits.

Madson started the ninth with the Phils up 3-0. Juan Uribe led off and homered to right and Russ Hodges screamed “The Giants win the pennant” over and over again till we all threw up. Except that didn’t really happen. This time Uribe just blooped a single to right. Uber-prospect Dee Gordon ran for Uribe at first, making his major league debut, and the game was delayed briefly so that a child-labor investigation could be conducted to determine if it was okay or not for the Dodgers to put someone who looks like they’re twelve in the game. Turns out Gordon just turned 23, so play was allowed to resume. James Loney, who entered the game at first after Blake was ejected after the sixth, was next and he lined a single to center. Gordon moved up to third, doing something that would normally be described as running, but in this case looked a lot faster. Wow. It put men on first and third with nobody out for Sands and lefty Andre Ethier hit for the righty Sands. Ethier sliced an oddly spinning line drive that Valdez stopped on a short-hop. He picked it up and tossed to second to force Loney for the first out as Gordon scored, cutting the lead to 3-1. Madson struck Barajas out swinging 2-2 for the second out and switch-hitter Dioner Navarro hit for the pitcher Mike MacDougal. Madson struck him out swinging 1-2 to end the game.

I know Lee threw seven shutout innings and struck out ten and whatnot, but watching Gordon go first to third might have been the highlight of the game. He’s strong like bull. Only with running and not being strong and without the bull.

Valdez also made a really nice play on the spinning line drive hit by Ethier, which helped keep the inning under control.

Madson and Bastardo have both pitched back-to-back days, with Madson pitching Sunday in a non-save situation with a 7-3 lead. Madson has a 6.43 ERA and a 1.43 ratio over his last seven appearances, having allowed five runs in seven innings. He threw 19 pitches in the game. Bastardo threw 14.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Ted Lilly went (1) Victorino (2) Polanco (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Francisco (6) Ruiz (7) Brown (8) Valdez. With Rollins out with a bruised knee, Valdez plays short and Victorino leads off. Francisco plays left with Ibanez on the bench against the lefty. Brown plays right against the lefty, making his first start of the year against a southpaw, but continues to hit seventh with Francisco and Ruiz back-to-back righties behind Howard.

Victorino was hit by a pitch to start the bottom of the first, but the Phils went in order behind him.

The Phils went in order in the second.

Valdez started the third with a double to left and Lee bunted him to third with the first out. Victorino drew a walk, putting men on first and third for Polanco. Polanco went down and got a low 0-1 pitch, hitting a soft liner into center that scored Valdez (1-0) and moved Victorino to second. Utley flew to center for the second out, but Howard ripped a ball into right for a single, scoring Victorino to make it 2-0 and moving Polanco to third. Francisco struck out looking to leave both men stranded.

Brown singled with one out in the fourth. Valdez struck out behind him and Lee flew to left.

Victorino, Polanco and Utley went in order in the fifth.

Ruiz singled to center with two outs in the sixth, but Brown grounded out to first for the third out.

Valdez grounded to short to start the seventh. With righty Blake Hawksworth on the mound for the Dodgers, Ibanez hit for Lee and grounded to second for the second out. Victorino flew to left for the third out.

Utley walked with one out in the eighth. Howard struck out behind him for the second out before Francisco moved him to second with another walk. Ruiz was next and hit a 2-2 pitch off the wall in left. Utley scored, putting the Phils up 3-0, and Francisco moved up to third. Brown grounded to second to leave the runners stranded.

Victorino was 0-for-2 with a walk. He’s 3-for-16 with three walks since returning from the DL.

Polanco 1-for-4 with an RBI. He didn’t walk last night, but he’s on pace to walk 54 times this season, which would be a career high. He has had two seasons when he on-based better than .380 — in 2005 he on-based .383 but walked just 33 times and in 2007 he on-based .388 but walked just 37 times. He’s on-basing .365 this season.

Utley was 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts. He’s hitting .224 with a .306 slugging percentage in his first 57 plate appearances.

Howard 1-for-4 with an RBI.

Francisco 0-for-3 with a walk. I like the idea of letting him play against lefties, but he’s hitting 182/297/327 against left-handed pitching for the year.

Ruiz 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI. He’s just 2-for-15 so far in June.

Brown was 1-for-4. 2-for-8 with a double against lefties on the season.

Valdez 1-for-3 with a double. He’s 3-for-his-last-9 with two walks, one of which was intentional.

Oswalt (3-3, 2.70) starts tonight against righty Rubby De La Rosa (1-0, 1.80). The 22-year-old De La Rosa will be making his first career start in place of the recently DL’ed Jon Garland. De La Rosa has made three relief appearances for the Dodgers, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out five in five innings. Oswalt didn’t seem thrilled about being pulled after five innings and 79 pitches in his last start. He has allowed more than two runs in a start just once in his nine starts this season.

The Phillies took Larry Greene, an 18-year-old corner outfielder from Georgia who hits left-handed, with the 39th overall pick in the First-Year Player Draft.


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