The Phils enter the All-Star break on a high note as they complete the sweep of the Pirates, 5-2.
A five-run first inning and a strong performance by J.A. Happ was more than enough for the Phils to complete the three game sweep of the Pirates, 5-2. They end the home stand with a 9-1 record, one of the best home stands in the team’s long history.
The Phils took a quick 1-0 lead as, with the bases loaded, via a walk to Jimmy Rollins, a single by Shane Victorino, moving Rollins up to scond base, and a single by Chase Utley, moving both Rollins and Victorino up a base, with nobody out, as Ryan Howard hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Rollins, while moving up a base both Victorino and Utley. Two batters later, with the bases reloaded, thanks to a walk to Jayson Werth, and now two men out, Pedro Feliz broke the game open early, as he hits a grand slam home run, his sixth home run of the year, scoring Victorino, Utley and Werth before him, giving the Phils a 5-0 lead. That would turn out to be all the runs that the Phils would need, as Pirates’ pitching would keep them off the scoreboard for the next seven innings, while J.A. Happ would dominate the Bucos during his seven innings of work, helped by some double plays. The Pirates would get a run across in the sixth as, with one man on, and one out, Freddy Sanchez hits an RBI double, scoring Andrew McCutchen, making it 5-1 Phils. After Madson pitched an easy eighth inning, J.C. Romero was given the ball in the ninth. Garrett Jones greeted him with a lead-off home run, his fifth home run of the season, making it a 5-2 Phils’ lead. But that would be the best that the Pirates would be able to do, as Romero would strike out the next two batters, and then get the last batter to hit into a 1-3 ground out to end the game.
J.A. Happ got the victory as he pitched seven very strong innings, giving up only one run on four hits and two walks, as he struck out four. His record is now 6-0 with an ERA of 2.90. Ryan Madson pitched a scoreless inning, giving up just two hits. J.C. Romero pitched the ninth, giving up a run on one hit, while striking out two. Virgil Vasquez took the lost as he lasted only one and a third innings, giving up five runs on four hits and three walks, while striking out only one. His record is now 1-3 with a 6.52 ERA. Jeff Karstens, Evan Meek, Donald Veal and Joel Hanrahan would combine for six and two-thirds shut out innings, giving up just two hits, (Meek (1), Veal (1)) and a walk (Kerstens), while striking out six batters (Kerstens (2), Meek (1), Veal (1)).
The Phils had only six hits in the game, with Chase Utley and Pedro Feliz leading the way with two hits a piece, with one of Pedro’s hits being a grand slam home run. Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino had the other two Phils’ hit. Besides Feliz’s four RBIs, Ryan Howard knocked in the Phils’ other run via a sac fly. The Phils now go into the All-Star break ten games over .500 (48-38), with the third best record in the National League and four games ahead of the second place Marlins in the NL East.