Results tagged ‘ Athletics ’
The Phillies hang on to give Cole Hamels his eighth win of the season, as the bats decided to wake up to defeat the Rangers, 8-6. It wouldn’t look like the Phillies would actually win the game at first as Michael Young would go deep on Hamels in the first inning, hitting his seventh home run of the year, knocking in Ian Kinsler, who has earlier singled, to give the Rangers a quick 2-0 lead. But then the Phillies would for the next two innings erupt on their former teammate Vicente Padilla for six runs. It would start in the second inning, when, with one out, Ryan Howard would get on base with a walk. Greg Dobbs and Pedro Feliz would then both follow with singles, soon loading the bases. Jayson Werth would then follow them with a two-run RBI single, scoring both Howard and Dobbs and sending Feliz to third, tying the score at two. Then, with Chris Coste batting, Padilla would uncork a wild pitch, scoring Feliz, and giving the Phillies a 3-2 lead. The Phillies would then add on to their lead in the third, when, once again with one out, Chase Utley would hit his National League home run lead tying twenty-third home run of the year, a solo shot, giving the Phillies a 4-2 lead. Two batters later, with Pat Burrell on first base via a walk, Howard would hit his twentieth home run of the year, a two-run shot, scoring Burrell, to make it 6-2 Phillies. The Rangers would try to come back in the fifth, when, with one out, and a runner on first, Jarrod Saltalamacchia would hit a RBI double, scoring Brandon Boggs, who has earlier reached base on a Utley’s throwing error after a force out, moving to second base on the error, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 6-3. One out later Saltalamacchia would score on a RBI single by Kinster, to make it 6-4 Phillies. The Phillies would get a run back in the sixth when Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI triple, scoring Coste, who has earlier reached base on a single, to give the Phillies a 7-4 lead. Rollins would then be thrown out at the plate, from Josh Hamilton to Kinsler to Saltalamacchia, when he tried to turn his triple into an inside the park home run, thus ending the inning. The Phillies would add one more run in the seventh, when Utley would hit a RBI double, scoring Shane Victorino, who has gotten on base with a lead off bunt single, making it an 8-4 Phillies’ lead. The Rangers would cut the Phillies’ lead in the eighth, when with Chad Durbin pitching in relief of Hamels, with two men out and the bases loaded, he would give up an RBI single to Max Ramirez, scoring Josh Hamilton, who has reached base earlier on a single, making it 8-5 Phils. Durbin would then be replaced by J.C. Romero. He would shortly walk Boggs, forcing in Milton Bradley, who has earlier singled, to make it an 8-6 Phillies’ lead. He would then buckle under and strike out Saltalamacchia to end the threat. Then in the ninth, Brad Lidge would come in to pitch, and later, with two men on and one out, he would strike out both Hamilton and Bradley to end the game and record his nineteenth save in nineteen tries.
Cole Hamels would get the win, going seven innings, giving up four earned runs on six hits and striking out eight. His record is now 8-5 with an ERA of 3.38. Chad Durbin would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up two earned runs on four hits. J.C. Romero would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits, walking a batter and striking out a batter. Brad Lidge would pitch the ninth, recording his nineteenth save, as he gave up no runs on two hits. Vicente Padilla would get the lost while getting hammered by the Phils, pitching six innings as he gives up seven earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 10-4 with an ERA of 4.13. Joaquin Benoit would pitch two innings of relief, giving up an earned run on two hits. Luis Mendoza would pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only one hit.
The bats, at least for this game, seems to have woken up, knocking in eight runs, although the batters are still going after early pitches or pitches way out of the strike zone. Utley is once more on a tear since breaking his 0 for several days ago, but is still taking the collar with men in scoring position. Hopefully this will be the precursor of a resurfacing of the Phillies’ dangerous offense.
The Phillies (44-38) will face the Rangers (41-41, 3rd American League West) for the rubber match of their weekend series. The game will be played at Rangers Park in Arlington, and will start at 6:05 pm Eastern (5:05 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be the veteran Jamie Moyer (7-5, 4.09), who is coming off a hard lost against the A’s on June 24, where he would pitch well until the seventh inning, going six and two-third innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits, in the Phillies’ 5-2 lost. Career wise, he is 4-5 with a 5.50 ERA in thirteen starts at Rangers Park. Like Cole Hamels on Saturday, he will be trying for his eighth victory of the year while hoping that he can help lead the Phils to their first series victory since their sweep of the Braves at Atlanta. He will be opposed by rookie starter Eric Hurley (0-1, 4.24), who is coming off his first career start at the hand of the Astros on June 24, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits, in the Rangers’ 4-3 lost. In three career starts, he has a lost and two no-decisions. He will be trying for his first career win while hoping that the Phillies’ bats have not come back from the dead.
The Phillies’ lead are now back to two, four and four games ahead of the Marlins, the Braves and the Mets respectively, who have all lost their games. The Phillies will conclude interleague play tomorrow night, before having an off-day on Monday, before starting a three games series with the Atlanta Braves in Hot-lanta, hoping to face the Braves with a reignited offense.
The Phillies (43-38) finish their involvement in interleague play by playing the last two games of their first visit with the Rangers (41-40, 3rd American League West), both night games at Rangers Park in Arlington. The first game will start tonight at 8:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be Cole Hamels (7-5, 3.27) who will be trying to end the Phillies’ present skid. He is coming off a hard lost to the Angels on June 22, where he pitched seven innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits in the Phillies’ 3-2 lost. He will once again be trying for his eighth win of the year while, as mentioned earlier, trying to end the Phillies’ present slide. His opponent will be ex-Phil Vicente Padilla (10-3, 3.74), who is coming off a win against the Nationals on June 22, where he went seven innings, giving up only two earned runs on five hits, in the Rangers’ 5-3 win. He has won his last three starts, going nineteen combined innings, giving up only eight earned runs on fourteen hits. He will be trying to make it four wins in a row, while hoping that the Phillies’ previous night’s scoring binge will not be the precursor of a resurgence of the Phillies’ offense.
The final game of the series will be played tomorrow night at 6:05 pm Eastern (5:05 pm Central). The Phillies will send to the mound the veteran Jamie Moyer (7-5, 4.09), who has lost his last start against the A’s on June 24, where he would pitch well until the seventh inning, thus going six and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits. He will be trying to break a personal two games losing streak and help see about getting the Phils back on the winning track. The Rangers will counter with Eric Hurley (0-1, 4.24), who is coming off a lost to the Astros on June 24, going six innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits, in the Rangers’ 4-3 lost. In three previous starts, he has taken a lost and two no-decisions. He will be trying for his first career victory, while hoping not to wake up the Phillies’ bat.
The Phillies are leading the Marlins by a full game as they start their game tonight with the Diamondbacks. The Mets are presently still three games behind the Phillies as they trail the Yankees in their game at Shea Stadium. The Braves are now trailing the Phillies by three and a half game as they have just lost their game with the Blue Jays. The Phillies will be trying to end their most recent slid and hopefully start a winning streak behind the pitching of both Hamels and Moyer.
Behind the four hit, shutout pitching of Kyle Kendrick, the Phillies are able to finally end their longest losing streak of the season at six games as they defeat the A’s, 4-0. The Phillies would score their first run in the top of first, when, with two men on base, and one out, Pat Burrell would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Jayson Werth, who first got on base with a walk, moved to second on Chase Utley’s bloop single and then was part of a double steal which got him to third, to give the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. The Phillies would increase their lead in the fourth when Pedro Feliz would hit a RBI triple off of both the left field wall and the back of A’s left fielder Jack Cust, which would score Burrell, who has earlier singled, giving the Phillies a 2-0 lead. Feliz would then score on a sacrifice fly by Chris Coste, making it 3-0 Phillies. The Phillies would score their final run in the sixth, when with two outs and a runner on first, Coste would hit a RBI single on a ball that was misplayed by A’s center fielder Carlos Gonzalez, allowing Shane Victorino, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, to score, giving the Phillies a 4-0 lead. That would turn out to be more than enough runs for Kyle Kendrick to work with, as he would go eight innings, giving up only four scattered hits to the A’s, and only getting into trouble in the eighth inning, after the Phillies have earlier blown a bases loaded, no body out, situation that could’ve blown the game wide open, in their half of the inning. After giving up a single to Kurt Suzuki and then getting Gonzalez to fly out to center, Kendrick would give up a single to Daric Barton, putting runners on first and second with one out. After a conference with Charlie Manuel, Kendrick would stay in the game, and unlike Moyer on Tuesday night, Kendrick would get out of the jam by striking out Mark Ellis on a called third strike and then getting Ryan Sweeney to ground out pitcher to first. J.C. Romero would then come in the ninth to redeem himself as he would quickly dispose of the A’s to end the ballgame.
Kyle Kendrick would get the win, as he pitches a brilliant game, going eight innings for the first time in his career, giving up no runs on four hits, striking out four and walking only one A. His record is now 7-3 with a 4.59 ERA. J.C. Romero would pitch a scoreless ninth, giving up no hits. Greg Smith would get the lost as he is only able to go five and two-thirds innings, giving up four earned runs on seven hits. His record is now 4-6 with an ERA of 3.69. Chad Gaudin would go one and a third shut out innings, giving up two hits. Santiago Casilla would go an inning, giving up no runs on two hits. Andrew Brown would pitch a scoreless ninth, giving up no hits.
Speaking of Kendrick’s performance, Phillies Phollowers has noted in her post yesterday that Kyle Kendrick has been seen working on his pitches with the 45-years old veteran Jamie Moyer, who yesterday had the A’s stymied for most of the game until he finally ran out of gas in the seventh. Could it be possible that the old vet has given Kendrick some pitching tips and that Kendrick actually listened to him? If that does turn out to be the case, maybe Kendrick should start listening to him more. Heck, maybe Moyer should start talking to Myers? It certainly couldn’t hurt at this point.
The Phils’ offense was finally able to score more than two runs in a game for the first time since June 18. But they still blew several scoring opportunities when they could have scored even more runs, the biggest one coming in the eighth inning. With Casilla pitching in relief, Feliz would greet him with a single, his second hit of the night. Victorino would then get on base via a fielding error by shortstop Bobby Crosby, who threw away the ball as he attempted to force out Feliz, who would end up on third, giving the Phillies runners on the corners with nobody out. Victornio, with Coste batting, would then steal second, his nineteenth of the season, to give the Phillies two runners in scoring position. Coste then hits a grounder to the pitcher Casilla. After looking over to third and seeing that Feliz wasn’t going anywhere, Casilla would turn around to get ready to throw to first, only to see that Coste was already there, loading the bases. But, the Phillies would soon run themselves out of a possible big inning, as Eric Bruntlett would hit a grounder to the shortstop Crosby. This time, Crosby would be able to throw Feliz out at home, with Suzuki touching home plate, as Feliz did not immediately move towards home upon contact, while the others would move up a base, leaving the bases still loaded. The next batter, Werth, would then strike out swinging. Utley would then step up to the plate, the bases still loaded and two outs, already having a four hits night, breaking out of his personal slump with two singles, a double and a triple. But, he is still in a slump with runners in scoring position, as, on a 2-1 count, he lines out to Crosby, leaving the bases loaded. The Phillies’ offense still seem to have a problem bringing in men in scoring position, although some aggressive base running in the first would get their first run home as Werth would score on Burrell’s short sac fly, as his running for home would force center fielder Gonzalez to make an offline throw to home plate, thus allowing Werth to score. In the third, with two outs and with Utley on second via a double, his second hit of the night, Utley would be sent home on Jimmy Rollins’ single to right. A strike to home plate by Sweeney would keep Utley from scoring what would have been the Phillies’ second run as he is tagged out by Suzuki. The Phillies are being a bit more aggressive in the field, but the batters still need to discipline themselves if they are either going to get runners home with less than two outs, or with two men out, if they are going to stay in front in the East.
The final game of this three games interleague play series will be an afternoon game at McAfee Coliseum. The game will start at 3:35 pm Eastern (12:35 pm Pacific). The Phillies (45-36) will send to the mound Adam Eaton (2-5, 4.94), who is coming off an awful start against the Angels on June 20, where he would only go five innings, getting roughed up for six runs on twelve hits in the Phillies’ 7-1 lost. Before that, he have had five straight quality starts, although going 2-2 with a no-decision, which was won by the Phillies, during that stretch. Lifetime against the A’s he is 1-1 with a 4.91 ERA. He will be trying to get his third victory while trying to continue the recent strings of good starts by the Phillies’ starters. The Athletics (42-35, 2nd American League West) will counter with Rich Harden (4-0, 2.44), who is coming off a no-decision against Florida on June 20, where he would go five and two-thirds innings, giving up an earned run on five hits, in the A’s 7-6 win. He has won his previous start against the Giants on June 14, going six scoreless innings, while giving up only one hit, in the A’s 4-0 win. He will be trying to get his fifth win, while hoping that he can keep the Phillies from regaining their potentcy.
The win puts the Phillies’ lead back to two games as the Marlins had earlier been crushed by the Rays, and keep their leads over the Mets and the Braves at four and four and half games respectively, as both teams have won their games. The Phillies will be trying to make it two wins in a row, as the offense tries to see if they can finally start driving in men in scoring position, before they head on to Texas to meet the Rangers for a weekend series.
Just hours after shutting down the A’s, the Phillies’ offense is in turn shut down by the combine pitching of A’s starter Rich Harden and reliever Alan Embree, who together would give up only three hits and a walk, while striking out eleven, as they are shutout, 5-0. The A’s would take the lead in the first inning as Adam Eaton would give up a RBI double to Ryan Sweeney, scoring Mark Ellis, who has earlier walked, making it 1-0 A’s. A batter later, Sweeney would score on a RBI single to Jack Cust, just beating Carlos Ruiz’s tag, after having slid past home plate, giving the A’s a 2-0 lead. Sweeney would be taken out of the game because of a possible injury caused by the slide. The game would then becomes a pitchers’ duel between Eaton and Harden for the next six innings, as Eaton would give up only one more run, on Carlos Gonzalez’s second home run of the season, a solo shot in the sixth, which would make it 3-0 A’s, while Harden would flirt with a no-hitter until the fifth, when Shane Victorino would get a two-out single and would later get a second single off of Harden in the eighth, but the Phils would otherwise be unable to get anything started against him. The A’s would then put it away in the eighth as they score two runs off of Phils’ reliever Tom Gordon. The first run would come in on a RBI double by Jack Hannahan, knocking in Eric Chavez, who has earlier walked, to make it 4-0 A’s. The final run would come in on a RBI single by Gonzalez, who would score Hannahan, as Victornio would commit a fielding error as he tries to bare hand the ball so that he could make a throw to the plate to try and nail Hannahan. But Victorino would then redeem himself as he throws out Gonzalez as he tries to move up to second on the error, tagged out by Chase Utley. The Phillies would attempt to score in the ninth, as, with two outs, Pat Burrell would get to third base with a triple. But it would be all for naught as Ryan Howard would then ground out to first for the game’s final out.
Adam Eaton took the lost in spite of performing a quality start, going seven innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits. His record is now 2-6 with a 4.86 ERA. Tom Gordon would pitch an inning of relief, giving up two runs on two hits. Rich Harden would get the win as he shut down the Phillies for eight innings, giving up only two hits while striking out eleven. His record is now 5-0 with a 2.15 ERA. Alan Embree would pitch a scoreless ninth, giving up just one hit.
The Phillies’ offense went right back to where they’d left off on Tuesday night, not doing anything right, only this time being worst as they didn’t really give themselves any time to wear down the A’s starter, as they constantly went after either his first, second or third offering. This seriously has got to stop, because it’s making the batters look stupid and it is allowing the opposing team’s pitchers to throw them whatever junk they want to, just as long at they know that the Phillies’ batters will swing at it. Come on guys, start practicing patience while standing inside the batter’s box again. SERIOUSLY!!!!
The Phillies (43-37) will now go to Arlington Texas, for a three games weekend series with the Texas Rangers (40-39, 3rd American League West). The first game of the three games set will be played in Rangers Park in Arlington, with a start time of 8:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Central). The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (3-9, 5.51), who is coming off a recent lost to the Angels on June 21, as he is once again hurt by the long ball as he would go seven and two-thirds innings, giving up four earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 6-2 lost. Myers will be trying to see if he can pitch another good game while not giving up any more gopher balls, while hoping that the offense’s bats will finaly wake up in the Texas heat. His opponent will be Kason Gabbard (2-3, 4.96), who is coming off his second win of the year against the Nationals on Jnne 21, as he goes five and one third innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits, in the Rangers’ 13-3 win. He will be trying to even his record, while hoping that the Phillies’ bats will continue to stay cold.
The first place Phillies are still leading the East by two games, as the Marlins were swept by the Rays, losing 6-1. Their leads over the Mets and the Braves are now three and a half and four games respectively thanks to their lost to the A’s. As they go to Texas to face the Rangers, the Marlins will begin a three games series with the Diamondbacks in Miami, while the Mets will face the New York Yankees, at Yankee Stadium for one game and Shea Stadium for three, for a four games series, including a day/night doubleheader at both stadiums tomorrow night, and the Braves will be meeting the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto, Canada for a three games series. The Phillies will be hoping that they can bounce back and take out their present frustrations on the Rangers, before they take the day off on Monday, and then start a three games set with the Braves in Hot-lanta.
The Phillies wasted a good effort by Jamie Moyer as the offense once again let the team down as they lost their sixth straight game. For the first six innings of the game, Moyer and A’s starter Joe Blanton would be involved in a pitchers’ duel, with Moyer only giving up one hit during that time, a lead-off single in the first inning to Kurt Suzuki, who would later by wiped out in a 3-6-3 double play by Ryan Sweeney, and striking out nine A’s, striking out the side twice, while Blanton would give up only two hits, one of which was Pat Burrell’s nineteenth home run of the year, a solo shot in the fourth inning, which gave the Phillies a 1-0 lead. Things would change in the seventh when the Phillies would get their first two men on base, Burrell via a walk and Jayson Werth via a single. But, things would then go flat as Geoff Jenkins would fly out to left, swinging on the first pitch, for the first out of the inning. Pedro Feliz would then single to right, but the third base coach, not taking a chance on getting Burrell thrown out at the plate, holds him up at third base to load the bases. This move would soon come back to haunt the Phillies as Carlos Ruiz, with a 2-1 count, would hit into a twin killing, third to first, with the third baseman touching third base first before throwing to first. The Phillies being unable to capitalize in their half of the inning would turn out to be a momentum changer, as, with Moyer still pitching, Sweeney would start off the A’s half of the seventh with a single. One out later, Bobby Crosby would get a pop single, on a ball that was misplayed by Shane Victorino and would drop in front of him, moving Sweeney to second. After Charlie Manuel decides to leave Moyer in the game, despite the fact that Chad Durbin was ready to go, Moyer would give up a three-run home run to Emil Brown, his sixth home run of the year, scoring both Sweeney and Crosby, and giving the A’s the lead, 3-1. After getting the second out and then giving up a ground rule double, which might have ended up being worst if it has not bounced into the stands, to Carlos Gonzalez, Manuel would come out and finally replace an out of gas Moyer with Durbin, who would then strike out Donnie Murphy to end the inning. In the eighth, the Phils would come back to cut the lead to 3-2, as, with Victorino on second, after getting on base with a single and then stealing second, he would score on a RBI single by Ryan Howard. Although Howard would later get to second base on a pass ball charged to Suzuki, Burrell would leave him there as he strikes out. The A’s would then deliver the coup de grace in the bottom of the inning, as with two out, J.C. Romero would walk Sweeney and then give up a two-run home run to Jack Cust, Cust’s twelfth home run of the year, to make it 5-2 A’s. That would be it as Huston Street would come in to pitch a 1-2-3 ninth to record his fourteenth save of the year.
Jamie Moyer would take the lost, although pitching a very good game until the disasterous seventh. He would go six and two-thirds inning, giving up only three runs on five hits, while striking out nine A’s. His record is now 7-5 with a 4.09 ERA. Chad Durbin would pitch a third of an inning in relief, striking out the only man he would face. J.C. Romero would pitch two-thirds of an innings, giving up two earned runs on only one hit, while walking one and striking out one. Ryan Madson would go a third of an inning, striking out the only A that he would face. Joe Blanton would get the win, as he pitches seven innings, giving up only one earned run on four hits. His record is now 4-10 with an ERA of 4.58. Alan Embree would pitch an inning, giving up one earned run on two hits. Huston Street would pitch a 1-2-3 ninth as he get his fourteenth save of the season.
It is now official, the offense presently stinks, and even they are starting to realize it, as they would acknowledge in an article posted on Phillies.com about the game. Even the manager seems to be noticing that the guys are right now doing everything wrong at the plate, and those things includes, “…guys not hitting, swinging bad, swinging at balls in the dirt, chasing balls over their heads, it looks like they’ve never seen a baseball….” and those things are going to keep hurting this team until the batters finally get it into their thick skulls that they should be trying to meet the ball, and not trying to hit home runs everytime they get up to the plate, with the situations that occurred in the first and seventh innings being perfect examples of what is presently wrong with this team. Especially the seventh, when Jenkins, who should have been up there trying to move the runners over into scoring position, which might have required him taking a pitch or two until he saw something which he was sure he could hit towards the right side of the infield and get Burrell and Werth over to third and second, instead swings at the first pitch and flies out, moving no one. This would come back to hurt the Phils, as I am sure that Feliz’s single would’ve scored both Burrell and Werth from second and third, and would instead load the bases, as the Phils’ third base coach refuses to send Burrell home, afraid that he might have been cut down at home by a throw from Sweeney. Me, I’d made the attempt. Why? To shake things up a bit. There’s a difference between being aggressive and being passive. Stopping Burrell at third was being passive, and is part of the reason that the Phils are mired in their present slide. If the third base coach had been aggressive, it would have taken a real good throw to home to get Burrell thrown out. Sure, Burrell isn’t as fast as Jimmy Rollins or Shane Victorino, his running towards home would’ve still forced Sweeney to have to throw an almost perfect strike to get him out at home, and who know what would’ve happened if the throw was anything but a perfect strike. But, since he didn’t send Burrell home, it’s all a very moot point. Hopefully, the players’ own realization that they are stinking up the place might just get them to do something to reverse it before the situation can get any worst.
The series between the Phillies (42-36) and the Athletics (42-34, 2nd American League West) continues with a night game at McAfee Coliseum. The game will start at 10:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Pacific). The Phillies will send up Kyle Kendrick (6-3, 5.06) to see if he can stop their slide before it can get any worst. He is coming off an awful start against the BoSox on June 18, where he would only pitch three innings, as he gave up six earned runs on six hits, in the Phils’ 7-4 lost. He will be trying to return to his winning ways, while, as mentioned earlier, trying to put a stop to the Phils’ swoon. The A’s will counter with Greg Smith (4-5, 3.51), who is coming off a no-decision against the Diamondbacks on June 19, where he would only go five innings, giving up an earned run on three hits, in the A’s 2-1 lost. He will be trying to improve his record, while at the same time seeing if he can adds to the Phillies’ present offensive woes.
The Phillies are still leading by one, four and four and a half games over the Marlins, Mets and Braves respectively, as all three teams lost their games while the Phils were unable to take advantage of it. The Phillies will be trying to end their present slump, which is a team effort, and stop wasting some good efforts that they have recently been getting from their starters.
The Phillies (42-36) continue their three games interleague series with the Oakland Athletics (42-34, 2nd American League West) with a night game at McAfee Coliseum. The game will start at 10:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Pacific). The Phillies’ starter will be Kyle Kendrick (6-3, 5.06), who is coming off a bad start against the BoSox on June 18, where he would only go three innings, giving up six earned runs on six hits, in the Phillies’ 7-4 lost. He will be trying to get back to his winning ways while trying to pitch the Phils into a win. His opponent will be Greg Smith (4-5, 3.51), who is coming off of a no-decision against the Diamondbacks on June 19, where he would pitch five innings, giving up an earned run on three hits, in the A’s 2-1 defeat. He will be looking to improve his record while trying to see if he can continue the Phils’ present offensive woes.
Speaking of the offense, it is sucking on all four cylinders, and they are presently wasting a bunch of generally good performances by their starters. As mentioned the other day, the batters have really got to start acting more patiently while in the batter box, as well as acting a bit smarter. They really need to stop with the first ball swinging, swinging at pitches way out of the strike zone and swinging at stuff in the dirt. As long as they keep doing the above, they are going to make good pitchers look better and make very bad pitchers look like they’re Cy Young Award candidates. If nothing esle, they need to start thinking when they are starting rallies.
While they continue their series in Oakland, the Marlins will be playing their second game with the Tampa Bay Rays in Miami, the Mets will be finishing up their series at Shea against the Marniers and the Braves will be finishing their home stand with the Brewers. The Phillies will be trying to once again increase their lead in the National League East, not expecting their opponents to once again all lose on the same night.
Presently mired in a five game losing streak, the first place Phillies (42-35) travels to Oakland to play the Athletics (41-34, 2nd American League West) for a three games interleague play series. The first game of the series will be played tonight in McAfee Coliseum at 10:05 pm Eastern (7:05 pm Pacific). The Phillies will be sending Jamie Moyer (7-4, 4.09) to the mound, as he comes off a long start against the BoSox on June 17, where he would go only five innings, giving up two earned runs on four hits, in the Phillies’ 3-0 lost. Lifetime against the A’s, he is 17-15, including two shutouts, with an ERA of 4.46. He is looking to regain the team’s lead in victory while trying to see if he can help pitch the Phillies out of their present swoon. His opponent will be Joe Blanton (3-10, 4.81), who is coming off his fourth straight lost, this time at the hands of the Diamondbacks on June 18, where he would only go three innings, giving up eight earned runs on seven hits, in the Athletics’ 11-1 lost. In sixteen starts for the A’s, they are 4-12 behind him. He will be trying to end his personal losing streak while trying to see if he can keep the Phillies’ offense from being able to restart its engine.
During their last five games, the Phillies’ offense has been placed in neutral while starting pitching has allowed the opposing team to score first. In fact, in all of their last nine loses, the Phillies have trailed their opponent right from the start, and, for the most part, had been unable to catch up, or when they do catch up, their pitching will sadly give the lead back. The Phils’ sputtering offense may have to resort to playing small ball for a while, getting away from their homering always and often style, if they intend to win games again. And the offense will also have to start acting a whole lot smarter while they are each standing inside the batter’s box. No more swinging at the first pitch, whether its a fastball or not, no more swinging at pitches that are either high or low, or out of the strike zone altogether (I mean especially you Howard), try to stay patient inside the batter box, start doing some hit and run when either Jimmy Rollins or Shane Victorino is on base, steal more bases, find ways to move the runners into scoring position, be willing to sacrifice themselves so that the team can win ballgames. But most of all, try to relax and just be patient while in the batter’s box. They will also have to stop worrying about whether they can stack up with the American League elite; Guys, just go out there, stay within your own comfort zone, and prove to yourselves that you are able to stay up with the best by just doing it. Once you do, I’m sure things will turn around.
The Phillies have a one game lead over the Marlins who also had yesterday off. Their lead over the Mets had increased to four games as the Mets lost their game last night to the Mariners, while the Braves find themselves behind the Phillies by four and a half games after their lost to the Brew crew. As the Phillies begin the first game of their three cities nine games road trip, the Marlins will start their series with the Tampa Bay Rays in Miami for three games, the Mets will continue their three games series with the Mariners in New York and the Braves will continue their three games series with the Brewers. The Phillies will be trying to recapture their winning ways as they travel to Oakland, Texas, and Atlanta, while hoping that they can increase their divisional lead over the pesky fish.
The Phillies lose their fifth game in a row in spite of a good start by Cole Hamels as the Phillies’ bats are unable to get just one clutch hit as they fall again to the Angels, 3-2. Hamels would give up all of the Angels’ runs in the top of the second inning as he first gives up a RBI single to Gary Matthews Jr., scoring Vladimir Guerrero, who has earlier singled, and then moved to second on Torii Hunter’s ground out to first, giving the Angels a 1-0 lead. Hamels would then give up a two-run home run to Casey Kotchman, his eighth home run of the year, off of the Bud Light sign in right field, to make it 3-0 Angels. That would be all of the runs that the Angels would need, as Jered Weaver pitched well enough to keep himself out of any major trouble, although giving up a RBI single to Ryan Howard in the third, knocking in Chase Utley, who has earlier doubled, as he breaks an 0-24 slump, to make it a 3-1 Angels’ lead. The Phils would later cut the Angels’ lead down to 3-2 in the seventh, when with Carlos Ruiz on second, after getting on base with a walk and then moving to second on Pedro Feliz’s ground out, Jimmy Rollins would knock him in with a RBI double. But that would be it, as first Scot Shields and then Francisco Rodriguez would keep the Phils scoreless from that point, although the Phils would threaten to tie the score in the ninth, as Rodriguez records his thirtieth save of the year.
Cole Hamels takes the hard lost as he has a quality start, going seven innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits. His record is now 7-5 with a 3.27 ERA. Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would each pitch an inning, giving up no runs apiece on three hits. Jered Weaver would get the victory, evening his record as he goes five and one third innings, giving up an earned run on four hits. His record is now 7-7 with a 4.56 ERA. Darren Oliver would pitch an inning, giving up an earned run on one hit. Scot Shields would pitch one and two-thirds innings, giving up no runs on no hits. Francisco Rodriguez would pitch an inning, giving up no runs on one hit as he records his thirtieth save of the season.
The Phillies’ offense would waste another good performance by one of their starters as they would get only six hits off of Angels’ pitching, as they are once again unable to get a clutch hit, inspite of Charlie Manuel actually shaking up the lineup to try and get something going. The Phillies were 1-5 on the home stand, battling from behind in all three of their games with the Angels. They will have the day off tomorrow as they get ready to head for the west coast to play the Athletics in Oakland for three games. The Phillies will be trying to figure out what they are doing wrong right now before they get ready to meet another good American League team on Tuesday.
With the lost, the Phillies (42-35) still have a full game lead over the Marlins, as they have just lost to the A’s in Oakland. Their lead over the Mets is presently three and a half games, as they have just defeated the Rockies in Denver. The Braves are now trailing them by four games as they’d defeated the Mariners at home. The Phillies will be heading to Oakland and try to figure out what they will now have to do to once again increase their lead in the National League East.
The Phillies have now lost their fourth game in a row, as well as their fourth straight series, as Brett Myers loses once again as he gives up three more home runs for his league leading twenty-first through -third home run as the Phils’ lose, 6-2. Two of the home runs that were given up by Myers went to Phillies’ killer Vladimir Guerrero. The first one was hit in the fourth inning, for his twelfth home run of the year to give the Angels a quick 1-0 lead. The second one would be hit in the seventh, for his thirteenth home run of the year, to make it 2-0 Angels. In between, Myers and Angels’ starter Joe Saunders would be involved in a pitchers’ duel, with Myers keeping the Angels’ bats off-balance with his curveball and change up, while Saunders would keep the Phils’ off the basepath. The Phillies would then tie the game in the bottom of the seventh, when, with two outs, Jayson Werth would hit his tenth home run of the season to make the score 2-1 Angels. After Chris Coste gets on base with a walk, Pedro Feliz would hit a RBI double, scoring Coste, tying the game at two all. Eric Bruntlett would follow with a single to center, but Feliz is held up at third by the third base coach, not realizing that Gary Matthews Jr. would bobble the ball in center field, nor that his throw towards home would be offline and then be cut off by the first baseman. Casey Kotchman would then throw the ball to second to cut down Bruntlett, who has been running towards second, believing that the ball has gone to home plate, who would then be tagged out by shortstop Erick Aybar. But, Myers would be unable to keep it tied in the eighth, as, with two men out, and a runner on first, would give up his third home run of the night, a two-run shot to Aybar, his second home run of the year, scoring Chone Figgins, who has earlier got on base with a single, making it 4-2 Angels. The Angels would then add a couple of insurance runs in the ninth, as with one out, Matthews Jr., who has reached base after being hit by the pitch, would score on a Juan Rivera fielder’s choice ground out, giving the Angels a 5-2 lead. Figgins would then hit a RBI single, scoring Jeff Mathis, making it 6-2 Angels. The Phillies would then attempt a comback in their half of the ninth as their first two men would get on base via walks. But the Angels would then send in Francisco Rodriquez, who would get the final three outs via a double play ground ball and a pop out, to record his twenty-ninth save of the season.
Brett Myers would take the lost as he goes seven and two-thirds innings, giving up four earned runs on six hits while striking out seven, as he pitches a good game until he ran into trouble in the eighth. His record is now 3-9 with a ERA of 5.51. J.C. Romero would pitch a third of an inning in relief, giving up no runs on no hits. Chad Durbin would pitch an inning, giving up two earned runs on one hit. Joe Saunders would get the victory as he pitches seven innings, giving up only two earned runs on five hits. Scot Shields would pitch an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Jose Arredondo would only face two batters, walking both. Francisco Rodriguez would go an inning, giving up no runs on no hits, as he records his twenty-ninth save of the season
The Phillies have now lost their fourth straight game and their fourth straight series as their lead in the National League shrinks down to one game. The offense seems to have been put on hold while Myers is still giving up gopher balls in the games that he starts which is killing him, despite him pitching a whole lot better than he has in his last few games. It seems to me that Charlie Manuel needs to call a team meeting and read these guys the riot act, just do something to get the bat smoking once again, else they are soon going to be seeing the young Marlins running in front of them and not following them in their rear view mirror.
The Phillies’ (42-34) weekend series with the Angels (45-30, 1st American League West) will end tomorrow afternoon. The game will start at 1:35 pm at Citizens Bank Park. The Phils will be sending to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (7-4, 3.23), who is coming off of his excellent outing against the BoSox on June 16, where he would pitch seven innings, giving up only two runs on seven hits in the Phillies’ 8-2 victory. He will be trying to end the Phils’ present four game losing streak as he goes for a team leading eighth victory of the year. The Angels will send to the mound Jered Weaver (6-7, 4.73), who is coming off a lost to the Mets on June 16, as he would pitch six and one-third innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits, in the Angels’ 9-6 lost. He will be trying to even his record while hoping to keep the anxious Phillies’ bats quiet.
The Phillies’ lead over the Marlins is now down to one game as they won their game with the Athletics. The Phillies are still leading the Mets by four and a half games, as they lost to the Rockies. Their lead over the Braves is now down to five games, thanks to the Braves’ victory over the Mariners. The Phillies will be trying to regain their winning way while trying to leave for Oakland on a positive note.
The Phillies (42-33) will continue their weekend series of interleague play against the Angels (44-30, 1st American League West) with two more games at Citizens Bank Park, with one to be played tonight and the other to be played tomorrow afternoon. Tonight game’s will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers (3-8, 5.58), who is coming off a no-decision which was a very bad start against the Cardinals on June 15, where he would only go six innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits, in the Phillies’ 7-6 lost. Career wise, he has meet the Angels only once before, being 0-1. He will be trying to win his fourth start, while his fellow Phils hope that he will be able to regain his old pitching form. The Angels will oppose him with Joe Saunders (10-3, 3.06), who is coming off of a win against the Braves on June 15, where he would pitch seven and a third innings, giving up no runs on five scattered hits and striking out five, in the Angels’ 2-0 win. He will be trying to become an eleven game winner while attempting to keep the Phillies’ bat quiet.
The final game of the three games set will be played tomorrow afternoon, starting at 1:35 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ will send to the mound their ace, Cole Hamels (7-4, 3.23), who is coming off an excellent start against the BoSox on June 16, winning the only game in that series, as he went seven innings, giving up only two earned runs on seven hits, in the Phillies’ 8-2 win. That was his third straight quality start, while the Phillies are playing 10-5 baseball with him on the mound. He will be facing his second straight American League team that he has never faced before. He will be trying for his eighth victory of the season while trying to help his team leave Citizens Bank Park on a high note before their trip to Oakland to meet the Athletics. The Angels will counter with Jered Weaver (6-7, 4.73), who is coming off a lost to the Mets on June 16, where he would go only six and a third innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits, in the Angels’ 9-6 lost. This will be his first start against the Phils. He hopes to even his record while trying to keep from being hammered for the second straight time by a National League team.
The Phillies’ inconsistent offense will be trying to get back to it winning form before the recent series with the Marlins’ as it tried to avoid losing its fourth straight series, while the Phillies hope that their starters will improve themselves by the All-Star Game in the middle of July.
The Phillies’ lead over the rest of the National League East is still two games after the Marlins’ lost last night to the Athletics. Their lead over the Mets is now four and a half games thanks to the Mets’ victory over the Rockies. Their lead over the Braves is still six games thanks to the Braves losing to the Mariners. The Phillies will be once again trying to increase their lead over the rest of the National League East, while they try to avoid having heir first four games losing streak, as well as avoid losing their fourth straight series.