Results tagged ‘ Double Plays ’

The Phils hang on to win their third grapefruit league game as they defeat the Orioles, 6-5.

Philadelphia_PhilliesThe Phils hold on to win their third spring training game as they beat the Orioles, 6-5.

The Phils took the lead in the top of the first as, with the bases loaded, via a lead-off single by Ben Revere, a walk by Freddy Galvis, moving Revere up to second base, a ground out by Chase Utley, 3-unassisted, moving both runners up a base, and a walk by Ryan Howard, and with two men out, Dom Brown hits a bases clearing triple, knocking in Revere, Galvis and Howard, giving the Phils a 3-0 lead. The Phils would add to their lead in the top of the second as, with a runner on third, and with two men out, Galvis hits an RBI triple, scoring Revere, who had just tripled, giving the Phils a 4-0 lead. The Orioles would get a run back in their half of the second as, with runners on second and third, and with nobody out, Ryan Flaherty hits a sacrifice fly to center, knocking in Chris Davis, who had started the inning off with a single, then stopped at third base on Nelson Cruz’s ground-rule double, making it a 4-1 Phils’ lead, while moving Cruz, who had earlier doubled, up to third base. The Phils would get that run back in the top of the fourth as, with men on second and third, and with nobody out, Maikel Franco hits an RBI single, knocking in Cameron Rupp, who had started the inning off with a single, then would stop at third base on Bobby Abreu’s double, giving the Phils a 5-1 lead, while sending Abreu, who had just doubled, on to third base. The Phils then took a 6-1 lead as Revere hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Abreu. The Orioles would cut the Phils’ lead down in the bottom of the fifth as, with a man on first, and with nobody out, Nolan Reimold hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the spring, knocking in Steve Clevenger, who had started the inning off with a walk, making it a 6-3 Phils’ lead. The Orioles then made it a 6-5 Phils’ lead in the bottom of the ninth as, with a runner on first, and with two men out, Alex Gonzalez hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the spring, scoring Michael Almanzar, who had started the inning off with a walk. But that would end up being the final score as Cesar Jimenez recorded his first save of the spring by getting Xavier Paul to pop out to the second baseman for the game’s final out.

A.J. Burnett (1-2, 10.o0) got the win as he pitched four innings, plus two batters, giving up three runs on four hits and a walk, while striking out two. Shawn Camp pitched an inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter.  Phillippe Aumont collected his second hold of the spring as he threw a scoreless inning, giving up a walk. Kevin Munson received his first hold of the spring as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits, while striking out a batter. Cesar Jimenez collected his first save of the spring as he went two innings, giving up two runs on one hit and two walks. Ubaldo Jimenez (1-1, 9.00) took the lost as he went two innings, giving up four runs on four hits and three walks. Zach Britton pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two batters. Eduardo Rodriguez threw two innings, giving up two runs on five hits, while striking out a batter. Darren O’Day, Steve Johnson and Kelvin De La Cruz combined for four scoreless innings, giving up three hits (one hit each) and four walks (O’Day (1), Johnson (1), De La Cruz (2), while striking out three (O’Day (1), De La Cruz (2)) between them.

The Phils had twelve hits in the game with Ben Revere (Single, Triple, RBI) and Bobby Abreu (Double, Triple) both leading the team with two hits each. Freddy Galvis (Triple, RBI), Chase Utley (Single), Ryan Howard (Single), Dom Brown (Triple, 3 RBIs), Cameron Rupp (Single), Maikel Franco (Single, RBI), Kevin Frandsen (Single) and Tyson Gillies (Double), had the other eight Phils’ hits. The Phils also had seven walks (Revere, Galvis, Howard, Darin Ruf, Abreu, Ronny Cedeno, Clete Thomas) and a sacrifice fly (Revere), while the defense performed three doubleplays.

The Phils (3-10-2) play their next Grapefruit League game at Bright House Field in Clearwater tomorrow afternoon against the Yankees (7-5). The game is to start at 1:05 pm. The Phils’ starter is still to be determined, while the Yanks plan to start Ivan Nova (1-0, 5.40). The Phils will be trying for their first two-game winning streak of the spring.

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.

Blanton and the bullpen blanks the Mets as the Phils sweep their major rival in the East, 2-0.

For only the third time at home this season, the Phils have swept a series, doing it for the first time against a team not named the Nationals as they defeated the Mets with a 2-0 win over their ace Johan Santana.

The Phils took the lead in the bottom of the first as, on a 1-0 fastball, Jimmy Rollins hits a lead-off home run into the left field seats, his seventh home run of the year, to give the Phils a 1-0 lead. The game then developed into a pitchers’ duel between Phils’ starter Joe Blanton, who would give up only a single and a walk during his first five innings, while Mets’ starter Johan Santana would give up only one more hit, a single to Rollins, and a walk, after giving up the solo shot to Rollins, in five innings. The Mets then threathen to score in the sixth as they loaded the bases on a walk to Luis Castillo, a single to Santana, moving Castillo up to second base, a sacrfice bunt by Alex Cora, 5-4, moving both runners up a base, and a walk to Daniel Murphy, with only one man out. But Blanton was able to get out of the inning by getting the next batter, David Wright, to hit into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Murphy at second, to keep it a 1-0 ballgame. Then, in the Phils’ half of the sixth, with two men out, Chase Utley made it a 2-0 Phils’ lead by hitting an 0-2 fastball into the right field seats for a solo home run, his eighteenth home run of the year. After putting the Mets down in the seventh, although giving up a single, Blanton started off the eighth by giving up a single to Castillo. After striking out pinch hitter Gary Sheffield for the inning’s first out, Charlie Manuel replaces Blanton with J.C. Romero, to face Cora. Sadly, the move did not work as Romero hits Cora with his second pitch, moving Castillo up to second base, putting the tying run on base, with still one man out. Manuel then replaces Romero with Chan Ho Park, to face pinch hitter Fernando Tatis. Park got the job done as he got Tatis to hit into a 4-6-3 double play, the Phils’ third double play of the game, wiping out Cora at second, and keeping it a 2-0 Phils’ lead. In the ninth, Brad Lidge threw his sixteenth save of the season, as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out the side as he preserves the shut out.

Joe Blanton got the win as he pitched a strong seven and a third innings of shut out ball, giving up just four hits and three walks, while striking out five. His record is now 5-4 with his ERA reduced to 4.69. J.C. Romero pitched to one batter, hitting him. Chan Ho Park recored his fifth hold, as he pitched to one batter, getting a double play ball, as he pitched two-thirds of an inning. Brad Lidge recorded his sixteenth save of the season as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out the side. Johan Santana took the lost, as he went seven innings, giving up two runs on three hits and two walks, while striking out three. His record is now 9-7 with an ERA of 3.29. Bobby Parnell pitched a scoreless inning, walking a batter, while striking out one.

The Phils had only three hits in the game, with a resurging Jimmy Rollins collecting two of the three hits, a home run and a single, raising his average to .217, as he has gotten seven hits in his last four starts. Chase Utley has the Phils’ other hit, a solo home run. The win keeps the Phils a game ahead of the Marlins and four games ahead of both the Braves and the Mets.

The Phillies (42-37, 1st National League East) continue their ten-games home stand with a four-games series with the Reds (40-40, 4th National League Central). The first game of the series will start at 7:05 pm tonight and will be played at Citizens Bank Park. The Phils will send to the mound Coel Hamels (4-5, 4.98), who is coming off his worst start of the season, as he was pummeled by the Braves on July 1, giving up seven runs on nine hits and two walks, while striking out only one batter, in four innings of work, in the Phils’ 11-1 lost. The Phils will be looking for Hamels to act like their ace again, while he will be looking to stop his own three games losing streak. The Reds will counter with Johnny Cueto (8-4, 2.69), who is coming off a win against the D’backs on July 1, as he pitched six strong innings, giving up no runs on only one hit and four walks, while striking out eight, in the Reds’ 1-0 win. He will be trying for his ninth win of the season. The Phils will be looking for Hamels to pitch the fourth straight quality start from a Phils’ starter, while trying to increase their present winning streak at home to four games.

Phils are finally Happ-y after crushing the Blue Jay as J.A. Happ pitches both his first career shutout and complete game in a 10-0 win.

After a closed club-house meeting after Friday night’s embarrassing lost, the Philles would proceed to unload their Interleague Play frustrations on the Blue Jays with a 10-run outburst while Happ would pitch both his first career complete game and first career shutout as he threw less than 100 pitches in the process, as the Phillies crush the Blue Jays, 10-0.

The Phils took a quick 2-0 lead in the first as, with one man on, and nobody out, Jayson Werth hits a two-run home run, his fourteenth home run of the year, scoring Shane Victorino, who had earlier walked. Four batters later, with a runner on first, and two men out, Pedro Feliz hits a two-run home run of his own, his fourth home run of the year, knocking in Ryan Howard, who had earlier singled, making it a 4-0 Phils’ lead. The Phils would make it 5-0 in the fourth, as, with one man on, and two men out, Carlos Ruiz hits an RBI double, knocking in Chris Coste, who had earlier singled. The Phils then put the game away for good in the fifth, as, with two men on, and nobody out, Howard hits an RBI double, knocking in Werth, who had earlier doubled, giving the Phils a 6-0 lead, while sending Chase Utley, who had earlier walked, over to third. Three batters later, with the bases loaded, after John Mayberry, Jr., is hit by the pitch, sending Howard on to second, and now with one man out, Coste hits an RBI single, scoring Utley, making it a 7-0 Phils’ lead, while moving both Howard and Mayberry up a base. Eric Bruntlett then followed with a sacrifice fly to center for the inning’s second out, scoring Howard, giving the Phils a 9-0 lead. Ruiz would make it 10-0 Phils with an RBI single, scoring Mayberry from second, while sending Coste up to second base. The Phils would score their final run in the sixth, as Werth hits a lead-off home run, his fifteenth home run of the season, his second home run of the game and his eighth career home run against the Blue Jays, making it 10-0 Phils. The Phils threathen to score more runs in both the seventh and eighth innings, but would be turned away by the Blue Jays’ bullpen. Meanwhile, Phils’ starter J.A. Happ would have his way with the Blue Jays’ batters, throwing strikes, and staying out of trouble thanks to a pair of doubleplays, before mowing the Blue Jays’ down, 1-2-3, in the ninth, thus pitching both his first career shut out and first career complete game, and doing with less than 100 pitches.

J.A. Happ got the win as he pitched a complete game shut out, giving up just five hits, as he struck out four. His record is now 5-0 with a 3.00 ERA. Brad Mills took the lost, as he pitched only four innings, plus three batters, giving up eight runs on eight hits and two walks, while striking out seven. His record is now 0-1 with an ERA of 14.09. Shawn Camp pitched an inning in relief, giving up a run on two hits and a hit batter. B.J. Ryan then followed, also pitching an inning, as he also gave up a run on two hits. Brandon League, Dirk Hayhurst and Jesse Carlson then combined to keep the Phils off the scoreboard during the last three innings, giving up just two hits (League (1), Hayhurst (1)) and two walks (Hayhurst), while striking out two (Hayhurst (1), Carlson (1)).

The Phillies recorded fourteen hits in the games, with Jayson Werth leading the way with four of them, including a double and two home runs, as he knocked in three runs, while raising his batting average up to .269. Ryan Howard followed with three hits. Pedro Feliz, Chris Coste and Carlos Ruiz were next with two hits a piece, with Shane Victorino having the Phils’ other hit. Besides Werth’s three RBIs, Feliz and Ruiz would both knock in two runs, while Howard, Coste and Eric Bruntlett would each knock in a run, with Bruntlett’s being by sacrifice fly. The Phillies came out smoking yesterday, taking out their Interleague Play frustrations. Hopefully they will have something left for today’s ballgame.

The Phillies (38-34, 1st National League East) will play their final Interleague Play game with the Blue Jays (41-35, 3rd-T American League East). The game will be played at the Rogers Centre and will start at 1:07 pm Eastern. The Phils starter will be Jamie Moyer (5-6, 5.97), who is coming off a win against the Rays on June 23, when he went six innings, giving up a run on five hits and three walks, while striking out four, in the Phils’ 10-1 win. He will be trying to even his record, while giving the Phils a chance to win their second Interleague Play series on the road. He will be opposed by Brian Tallet (5-4, 4.36), who is coming off a win against the Reds on June 23, as he pitched six shut out innings, giving up just three hits and one walk, while striking out seven, in the Blue Jays’ 7-5 win. He will be trying for his sixth win of the season, while trying to help the Blue Jays win the series. The Phils will be trying to even things up on their road trip, before going to Atlanta to meet the Braves, while trying to increase their lead over the Mets.

Thanks to a Nats throwing error in the eighth, the Phils finish the sweep, 8-6.

A throwing error by Nats’ reliever Jesus Colome to first on a Pedro Feliz’s bunt leads to a three-runs Phils’ eighth, giving the Phils a series sweep of the Nationals in Washington, as the Phils defeat the hapless Nationals, 8-6.

The Phils took the lead in the first, as, with runners on the corners, and two men out, Jayson Werth hits an RBI single, knocking in Chase Utley, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Ryan Howard’s single, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead, while sending Howard, who had earlier singled, to third base. Shane Victorino made it a 3-0 Phils’ lead, as he hits a two-run double, scoring both Howard and Werth. The Nationals would come back in their half of the first, as, with two men on, and one man out, Adam Dunn hits an RBI double, scoring Cristian Guzman, who had earlier singled, and had moved up to second base on Nick Johnson’s single, making it a 3-1 Phils’ lead, while sending Johnson over to third. A wild pitch by Phils’ starter Chan Ho Park would make it a 3-2 Phils’ lead, scoring Johnson, while sending Dunn up to third, with still one man out. Elijah Dukes then tied up the game at three-all as he hits an RBI double, knocking in Dunn. The Nationals took the lead in the second, as, with the bases loaded, via walks to Guzman, Johnson and Ryan Zimmerman, and one man out, Dunn received an RBI walk, forcing in Guzman, making it a 4-3 Nats’ lead, while both Johnson and Zimmerman moved up a base. That would be it for Park, as he is replaced on the mound by Jack Taschner. The Nats then took a 5-3 lead, as Willie Harris, who had come into the game in place of Dukes, who had left the game because of an injury, was hit by the pitch, scoring Johnson, while moving up both Zimmerman and Dunn. The Phillies would then get out of the inning as Josh Willingham lined into a 5-4 double play, as Dunn is thrown out while trying to get back to second base. The Phillies came back in the fourth, as, with a runner on second, and two men out, Jimmy Rollins hits an RBI single, scoring Pedro Feliz, who had earlier singled and had moved to second on Taschner’s sacrifice bunt, making it a 5-4 Nats’ lead. The Phils then tied it at five-all, as, with a runner on second, and still two men out, Utley hits an RBI double, scoring Rollins, who had earlier stole second base. The Nats regained the lead in the sixth, as, with runners on the corners, and nobody out, Zimmerman hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Guzman, who had earlier singled, and had gone over to third on Johnson’s single, making it a 6-5 Nats’ lead. The Phils took back the lead in the eighth as, with two men on, and nobody out, Pedro Feliz puts down a bunt towards third base that was fielded by Jesus Colome, who then threw to first. The throw got past Nats’ first baseman Johnson for an error, which allowed both Werth, who had earlier singled, and had gone to second on Victorino’s walk, and Victorino, who had just walked, to score, giving the Phils a 7-6 lead, while sending Feliz all the way to third on the error. Two batters later, with Feliz still on third, and one man out, pinch hitter Eric Bruntlett hits a pinch hit double, scoring Feliz, and giving the Phils an 8-6 lead. That would end up being the final score, as Brad Lidge came on in the ninth, with one man on base, Harris, via a walk from Scott Eyre, with one out, who got Willingham to hit into a 6-4-3 double play, wiping out Harris at second, for his seventh save of the season, and his second save of the series, giving the Phils a series sweep.

Chan Ho Park got a no-decision, lasting only one and a third innings, giving up five runs on five hits, four walks and a wild pitch, while striking out only two. Jack Taschner pitched two and two-thirds innings of scoreless ball, giving up a hit, two walks and hitting a batter, while striking out two. Chad Durbin pitched two innings, giving up a run on two hits and a hit batter, as he struck out two. Sergio Escalona got the win as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up just one hit, as he struck out one. His record is presently 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA. Scott Eyre got his sixth hold of the season as he pitched an inning and a third, giving up just a walk, while striking out two. Brad Lidge got his seventh save of the year as he pitched to only one batter, getting him to hit into a double play. Jordon Zimmermann also got a no-decision as he pitched five innings, giving up five runs on seven hits, three walks and a hit batter, as he struck out six. Ron Villone pitched two scoreless innings. Julian Tavarez took the lost as he pitched to two batters, giving up two runs on one hit and a walk. His record is now 0-3 with an ERA of 6.32. Jesus Colome recorded his first blown save of the year as he pitched one third of an inning, giving up a run on one hit. Joe Beimel pitched a scoreless inning and a third, giving up just a hit.

The Phillies collected ten hits in the game, with Jimmy Rollins, Jayson Werth and Pedro Feliz leading the way with two hits each. Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Shane Victorino and Eric Bruntlett got the other four hits. Victorino knocked in two runs, while Rollins, Utley, Werth and Bruntlett each knocked in a run. The win gives the Phillies their third sweep of the season, with all three being done on the road. This was also the worst start for Park since joining the Phils, after having two straight quality starts, so his days in the starting rotation may be numbered.

The Phillies (20-16, 2nd) have the day off today before they start a three-games series with the Reds (21-16, 3rd National League Central) tomorrow night in Cincinnati. The Phils hope to continue there hot streak while in Cincinnati.

Two grand-slams powered the Phils over the Nationals, as they once again come from behind to win, 13-11.

The Phillies, thanks to grand slams by Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez, were able to defeat the Washington Nationals, 13-11, as starting pitching once again failed them.

Washington took a quick 1-0 lead, as, with the bases loaded via singles to Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns and a walk to Jesus Flores, and with one man out, Alberto Gonzalez knocked in Dunn with a sacrifice fly, while sending Kearns over to third. The next batter, Nationals’ starter Shairon Martis, helped his own cause by hitting an RBI single, knocking in Kearns, while sending Flores over to second base. The Phillies would quickly tie the game up in their half of the second. With runners on second and third, with no one out, Greg Dobbs hits an RBI single, knocking in Jayson Werth, who had earlier walked, and had move to third on Raul Ibanez’s double, while sending Ibanez, who had earlier doubled, over to third. The score was then tied up at two-all as Lou Marson hits into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Dobbs at second, as Ibanez scored. The Nats retook the lead in the third, as, with a runner on first, and no one out, Ryan Zimmerman hits a two-run home run, his third home run of the year, scoring Nick Johnson, who had earlier walked, making it 4-2 Nationals. Two batters later, Elijah Dukes made it a 5-2 Nationals’ lead as he hits a solo home run, his third home run of the season. It became 6-2 Nationals in the fifth, as Zimmerman hits a lead-off solo home run, his fourth home run of the season, and his second of the ball game. But the Phils would come back to tie it up at six all in their half of the fifth, as with the bases loaded via singles by Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino and Chase Utley, with one man out, Ryan Howard hits a grand slam home run to center field, his fourth home run of the season and the sixth grand slam home run of his career, scoring Rollins, Victorino and Utley. But, the Nats regained the lead in the sixth, as with the bases loaded via a double to Anderson Hernandez, an intentional walk to Zimmerman, and a walk to Dunn, with two men out, Dukes walked, bringing in Hernandez, making it 7-6 Nationals. The Phils would tie it up at seven-all in the bottom of the sixth, as, with runners on second and third, and no one out, Rollins hits an RBI double on a ball that was misplayed in foul territiory by third baseman Zimmerman that landed fair, scoring Marson, who had earlier walked, and had moved to third base on pinch hitter Pedro Feliz’s double, while Feliz would only end up on third. Sadly, the Phils would be unable to do more damage as Victorino grounded out back to the pitcher, 1-3 for the inning’s first out, and after Utley was hit by the pitch, loading the bases, Howard this time lined out into a double play, 3-unassisted, as Johnson beat Utley back to the bag. The Nationals retook the lead in the top of the eighth, as with a runner on first, and no one out, Johnson hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the year, scoring Hernandez, who had earlier walked, making it 9-7 Nats. Two batters later, with a man on first, and still nobody out, Dunn hits a two-run home run, his fifth home run of the season, scoring Zimmerman, who had earlier walked, to give the Nationals an 11-7 lead. But, the Phils would come right back in their half of the eighth. With runners on second and third, and one out, Victorino hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Feliz, who had earlier singled, and had gone on to third base on Rollins’ second double of the night, making it 11-8 Nationals. Utley then hits an RBI single, scoring Rollins, and cutting the Nats’ lead down to 11-9. Howard and Werth followed with a pair of walks, loading the bases for Ibanez, with still two men out. On the first swing of the bat, Ibanez hits a fast ball into right field for a grand slam home run, his sixth home run of the year, his eighth career grand slam home run, and the Phils’ second grand slam of the night, as they took the lead 13-11, their first lead of the ball game. Ryan Madson then came into the game to record his first save of the season, as he shut down the Nats, giving up only a single.

Joe Blanton received a no-decision as he lasted only four and a thirds innings, giving up six runs on eight hits and three walks, while striking out three. Jack Taschner pitched an inning and a third, giving up a run on on one hit and two walks. Clay Condrey pitched one and one-thirds scoreless innings, giving up a walk, as he struck out two batters. Scott Eyre faced only four batters, giving up four runs on two hits, both home runs, and three walks. J.A. Happ picked up the win as he pitched an inning, giving up no runs, while giving up only a walk. His record is now 1-0 with a 4.38 ERA. Ryan Madson recorded his first save of the year as he pitched a scoreless ninth, giving up just one hit, as he struck out two. Shairon Martis also received a no decision, as he went five innings, giving up seven runs on eight hits and four walks, while striking out three. Julian Tavarez recorded his first blown save of the year, as he allowed a run to score, while pitching one-thirds of an inning, giving up two hits. Mike Hinckley pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs. Kip Wells pitched a scoreless inning, striking out two. Garrett Mock pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up two runs on three hits, while striking out a batter. Joel Hanrahan took the lost as he blew the save for the third time this year, as he gave up three runs on one hit and two walks, as he struck out a batter in a third of an inning. His record is now 0-1 with a 8.64 ERA.

The Phillies had fourteen hits in the game, with both Jimmy Rollins and Raul Ibanez leading the way with three hits apiece. Rollins had a single and two doubles, knocking in a run, while scoring two, as he raised his average up to .192, as he may be showing signs of coming out of his slump. Ibanez had a single, a double and a grand slam home run, the eighth one in his career, as he knocked in four runs, while scoring twice, raising his average to .342. Shane Victorino, Chase Utley and Pedro Feliz each had two hits, with both Victorino and Feliz recording a double. Ryan Howard and Greg Dobbs recorded the other two hits, with Howard’s hit being a grand slam home run, his sixth career grand slam, leaving him just one short of the Phillies’ record of seven career grand slams, set by Mike Schmidt. The two grand slams in one game was last done by the Phils on September 9, 2003, when Tomas Perez and Jason Michaels hit grand slams against the Braves. Besides Rollins’ RBI, and the four RBIs posted by both Howard and Ibanez, Victorino, Utley, and Dobbs would record the other three. The Phillies’ pitching staff, after giving up none on Sunday, gave up five home runs last night, three by Blanton, and two by Eyre, which leaves Ryan Madson as the only Phils’ pitcher who has so far not given up a gopher ball. Madson’s stint in the ninth inning occurred because Brad Lidge is presently listed as day-to-day, thanks to inflammation of his right knee. Hopefully this will be a temporary situation as the knee will be checked on today. With the victory, the Phils have now won four games in a row, and are just half a game behind the slumping Marlins, who had lost their seventh straight game to the New York Mets.

The Phillies (10-8, 2nd) will continue their three-games series with the Nationals (4-14, 5th). The game will be played tonight at Citizens Bank Park. Game time is 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound their ace Cole Hamels (0-2, 9.69), who is still looking for his first win, as he came off a lost against the Brewers on April 23, where he pitched only three and a thirds innings, after being taken out of the game after being hit by a line drive off his left shoulder off the bat of Prince Fielder. He had at that point given up two runs on four hits and no walks, while striking out six, looking like he was getting back his old form, in the Phils’ 6-1 lost. He will be going for his first win while really lowering his ERA. His opponent will be John Lannan (0-2, 4.43), who is also looking for his first win, as he comes off his second straight no-decision, this time against the Braves on April 22, as he went seven innings, giving up no runs on five hits and a walk, while striking out four, in the Nationals’ 1-0 lost. He will try to record his first win. The Phillies will try to make it five wins in a row, while hoping that they’ll be ending up in first place for the first time this season.

Spring Training: Phillies lose home opener to the Blue Jays.

The Phillies has just finished playing their home opener at Bright House Field in Clearwater, Florida, this afternoon. They ended up on the short end once again, as they lose to the Toronto Blue Jays, 6-2.

The Phillies started the game, pitching wise, by sending out Carlos Carrasco, one of the four men trying to land the job of fifth starter in the starting rotation. The pitching prospect was soon aiming to please, as he put down the Blue Jays 1-2-3, getting two straight strikeouts and a ground out, third to first. After the Phils went down in order in their half of the first, Carrasco went back on the mound in the top of the second, once again getting a 1-2-3 innings against the Blue Jays batters by getting a ground out, 5-3, a fly out to right and a third strikeout. Carrasco seems to have set the bar in the battle for the final rotation spot by striking out three, getting two ground outs and a fly out.

After the Phils would go scoreless in their half of the second, J.A. Happ, another contender for the fifth spot, would take the mound. Refusing to give ground to Carassco, Happ would put together a 1-2-3 inning of his own, getting a ground out, 6-3, a fly out to right and a strike out. The Phillies would then proceed to break the scoreless tie, as, with no one out, and runners on first and second via a single and a stolen base (Jason Ellison) and a walk (Carlos Ruiz), Jimmy Rollins would knock in Ellinson with a single to right, while sending Ruiz to third, as he would move up to second on the throw home. Sadly, that would be all that the Phillies would do that inning, as the next three batters would strike out, pop out and strike out. Happ would go back to the mound in the top of the fourth, soon getting the first two men out via a ground out, 4-3 and a pop out to third. He would then give up a single, the first hit of the game for the Blue Jays, before he ended the inning with a fly out to center. In spite of the hit, Happ would do as well as Carrasco, getting two ground outs, two fly outs, a pop out and a strike out. The Phillies would only manage a walk in the bottom of the fourth.

The Phillies would send Justin Lehr to the mound to start the fifth. Lehr would be welcomed by Travis Snider who would hit a lead-off home run on a 2-2 pitch, tying the game up at 1-1. The Blue Jays would then take the lead as Jason Lane would follow Snider with a home run of his own on a 3-2 pitch. Lehr would then get out of the inning by getting two straight ground outs, 4-3 and 3-1 and then a line out to second. The Phils would go down 1-2-3 in their half of the fifth.

Gary Majewski would pitch the sixth for the Phillies. He would pitch a 1-2-3 inning against the Blue Jays, with a strike out, a ground out, 3-1 and another strike out. In the Phillies’ half of the inning, they would tie the score at 2-2 with two men outs as Greg Dobbs singles in John Mayberry, Jr., who has earlier doubled. After the sixth inning ends, Majewski would go back out to pitch the seventh, soon mowing down the Blue Jays again, 1-2-3, as he would get a fly out to left, a ground out, 4-3, and a pop out to third on six pitches. The Phillies would be unable to score in their half of the inning, in spite of getting a man on first via a hit batman, with one out, because of an inning ending double play.

The Phillies would start the eighth inning with Blaine Neal on the pitching rubber. After getting out the first batter with a pop out to second, he would give up a double to David Cooper. The next batter would ground out, 5-3, keeping Cooper at second. After that, everything would go wrong for Neal. He would walk Angel Sanchez, putting runners on first and second, then would throw a wild pitch, sending Cooper to third, putting runners on the corner. He would then walk Bradley Emaus on four pitches, loading up the bases as Sanchez would move over to second. Scott Campbell would then come up and clears the bases with a double, scoring Cooper, Sanchez and Emaus, giving the Blue Jays a 5-2 lead. That would be it for Neal, as he would be taken out for Yorman Bazardo. Bazardo would hit the first batter he would face, Brian Jeroloman, putting runners on first and second. He would then give up an RBI single to Adam Loewen, scoring Campbell, and sending Jeroloman to third, as the Blue Jays would increase their lead to 6-2. Bazardo would finally end the inning by getting the next batter to ground out, 4-3, but by then the damage had already been done as Neal and Bazardo would combine to give up four runs (all charged to Neal) on three hits, two walks, a wild pitch and a hit batter. The Phils would be unable to score in their half of the eighth, in spite of starting the inning off with a walk, as the next batter would hit into a double play before the inning would end with a strike out.

Bazardo would be sent back out to pitch the ninth. He would strike out the first batter he would face, before issuing a walk. He would then end the inning by getting the next batter to ground into a double play. The Phillies ninth would begin with a strike out before Andy Tracy would get on base with a single. Pablo Ozuna would follow him with a single, putting runners on first and second with one out. The next batter would then hit into a force out, with Ozuna being out at second while Tracy would move over to third. The next batter would then strike out, ending the game, and giving the Phils their second straight Spring Training lost.

For the Phillies, the two men trying for the fifth starter spot in the rotation, Carrasco and Happ, would both do well today, as between them, they would give up no runs in four innings of work, giving up only a single, while striking out four. Majewski would also do well, as he would pitch two scoreless innings, giving up no hits, while striking out two. Although he would allow in the fourth and final run to score in the eighth inning, Bazardo would pitch a scoreless inning and a third, giving up a hit and a walk and hitting a batter, while striking out one. Lehr would pitch one bad inning, giving up back-to-bat home runs, before getting out of the inning with no further damage. Neal though, would end up being hit the hardest, as he would give up four earned runs on two hits, two walks and a wild pitch in two-thirds of an inning.

Among the batters, the Phils would have only six hits, with Rollins, Mayberry, Dobbs, Tracy, Ozuna and Ellison each getting a hit, while Rollins and Dobbs would be responsible for the Phils two RBIs. The Phillies would only walk three times in the game while striking out nine times.

Neal would be the losing pitching, with a Spring Training record of 0-1 with an ERA of 54.00. The winning pitching for the Blue Jays would be Bill Murphy, who, in one inning of work, would give up no runs or hits, while striking out one batter. His Spring Training record is now 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA.

The Phillies next Spring Training game will be played tomorrow afternoon from Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Florida at 1:05 pm Easetrn.  

2008 World Series: Game 1: The Phillies takes a 1-0 lead behind the strong pitching of Cole Hamels and two shut out innings from the bullpen as they defeated the Rays, 3-2.

Seven strong innings from Cole Hamels and two shut out innings from Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would be the difference as the Phillies would hang on to defeat the Rays, 3-2, to take the first game of the World Series. The Phils would jump into the lead in the top of the first, when, with a runner on first and one man out, Chase Utley would hit a two-run home run into the right field seats, scoring Jayson Werth, who has earlier walked, to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead. The Phillies would threaten to increase their lead in the second, when, with the bases loaded via a single (Shane Victorino) and two walks (Pedro Feliz and Carlos Ruiz) and with one man out, Victorino would try to score on a shallow fly ball to left center field by Jimmy Rollins that was caught by Rays’ centerfielder B.J. Upton for the inning’s second out. Victornio, who would later admit that he ran home on a miscommunication with third base coach Steve Smith, who was telling him not to go home, would be tagged out at home plate by Rays’ catcher Dioner Navarro for the inning’s final out. In the top of the third, the Phillies would threaten to score again after Werth would reach third base via a lead-off double and a Utley ground out, 4-3, for the inning’s first out. But Rays’ starter Scott Kazmir would get out of the inning by getting first Ryan Howard and then Pat Burrell to strike out swinging. The Rays would then mount a threat of their own in their half of the third as they would load up the bases with only one out via two singles (Ben Zobrist and Akinori Iwamura) and a walk (Jason Bartlett). But Cole Hamels would end the threat by getting Upton to ground into a 5-4-3 double play on a sharp grounder hit to Feliz. The Phillies would finally add another run in the fourth as, with runners on second and third and one man out, Victorino, who has earlier singled, would move to second on Feliz’s single, and who would both move up a base on Chris Coste’s ground out to first, would cross the plate on Ruiz’s ground out, 6-3, giving the Phillies a 3-0 lead. The Rays would finally get on the scoreboard as, with two outs, Carl Crawford would hit a solo home run on a Hamels’ curveball, cutting the Phils’ lead down to 3-1. The Rays would then cut the Phils’ lead down further in the fifth, as, with a runner on second and two men out, Iwamura would hit a RBI double, scoring Bartlett, who has earlier walked and then stole second, to make it a 3-2 Phillies’ lead. Hamels would then end the inning by getting Upton to foul out to Howard, who would make a spectular catch just inside the stands behind the first base foul line. The Rays would try to threaten again in the sixth as Howard would boot Carlos Pena’s ground ball for a fielding error. But, when Pena tried to steal second, he would be picked off by Hamels, who would throw over to Howard, who would then throw to Rollins, would would just barely tag out Pena for the inning’s first out, although the Rays’ bench would claim that Hamels had actually balked, a claim that first base umpire Kerwin Danley would ignore. Hamels would then proceed to strike out Evan Longoria and then get Crawford to ground out, 4-3, to end the inning. The Phillies would make another threat to score an extra run in the seventh, as, with runners on third (Utley (single, stolen base and wild pitch (J.P. Howell)) and first (Burrell (walk), who was then replaced by pinch runner Eric Bruntlett) and two outs, Rays’ reliever Grant Balfour, the second Rays’ reliever for the inning, would end the inning by striking out Victornio. Hamels’ seventh would be an easy eleven-pitch 1-2-3 inning. After the Phillies would go down 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth, Ryan Madson would come out in relief of Hamels and proceed to pitch a 1-2-3 inning of his own. In the Phillies’ ninth, the Phils would make one final attempt to get an insurance run as they would get runners on second (Werth (ground-rule double) and first (Utley (intentional walk)) and one out. But, the Rays would get out of the inning as first Howard would strike out looking and then Bruntlett would pop out to the second baseman. The Phillies would then hand the ball over to Brad Lidge to close it. Lidge would proceed to strike out Pena and Longoria on seven pitches before ending the game by getting Crawford to foul out to Feliz for the final out, recording the save.

Cole Hamels would get the win as he would pitch seven strong innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits and two walks, while striking out five. His record in the series is now 1-0 with a 2.57 ERA and a 4-0 record in the post-season. Ryan Madson would pitch a 1-2-3 inning, striking out one. Brad Lidge would also pitch a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two, as he would record his fifth save in the post-season and his forty-sixth save in forty-six tries. Scott Kazmir would receive the lost as he pitches six innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out four. His series record is 0-1 with an ERA of 4.50. J.P. Howell, Grant Balfour, Trever Miller and Dan Wheeler would combine for three scoreless innings, giving up two hits (Howell and Balfour one hit apiece) and two walks (Howell and Balfour would each give up a walk), while striking out five (Howell and Balfour two each and Miller one).

The Phillies would win last night’s game thanks to the bullpen shutting down the Rays’ offense in the last two innings, while Cole Hamels, Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would combine to get the last eleven Ray batters out, after Hamels had picked off Carlos Pena trying to steal second in the sixth inning. Speaking of the pick off, Rays’ manager Joe Maddon and the Rays’ bench all thought that Hamels had balked before he threw to first base after Pena had started to run towards second base. The first base umpire, Kerwin Danley, would ignore their argument, but before the start of the Phillies’ seventh, home plate umpire Tim Welke told Maddon that he would look into the matter. Quite frankly, I don’t know what the point of all this is. If it was a balk, Danley should’ve called it right then and there. I just hope this wasn’t an attempt by Maddon to influence things later in the series as it could backfire on his team since the umpires could decide to look closely at the pitchers of both teams when their pitchers throw towards first when there is someone on base who is a basestealing threat. I guess time will tell. Meanwhile, the Phillies offense would once again in the post-season be unable to hit an early knockout blow against their opponent as they would leave eleven men on base, thanks mainly to Ryan Howard being unable to stop chasing junk out of the strike zone. Hey big guy, lay off the junk pitches will you? As long as you keep swinging at them, they’re going to keep throwing them to you. Please follow Charlie Manuel’s advice, just relax at the plate and let the ball come to you. Even if it means hitting into an out, it’ll at least be a lot better than being made to look like a fool with your constant swing and misses at off-speed junk.

The 2008 World Series continues tonight with the series’ second game, being played tonight at Tropicana Field. The game will begin at 8:29 pm Easten time. The Phillies will send to the mound Brett Myers (0-0, -.–), who is coming off his victory over the Dodgers on October 10, where he went five innings, giving up five earned runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out six, in the Phillies’ 8-5 win, thanks in part to his going 3 for 3 at the plate, knocking in three runs and scoring two. His post-season record is 2-0 with a 5.25 ERA, as he pitched twelve innings, giving up seven earned runs on eight hits and seven walks, while striking out ten. During the regular season, his record was 10-13 with a 4.55 ERA, as he pitched in thirty games, giving up 103 runs, 96 of which were earned, on 197 hits and 65 walks, while striking out 163 batters in 190 innings of work. But, he was a better pitcher in the second half, after his return from a minor league reassignment, as he would go 7-4 with two no-decisions. Myers will be pitching his first start on the road during the post-season, and hoping to stake the Phillies to a 2-0 lead in the series, while hoping to avoid a repeat of his last road start back on September 19 against the Marlins where he got bombed for ten earned runs. The Rays will be countering with James Shields (0-0, -.–), who is coming off his second straight bad start in the ALCS against the Red Sox on October 18, as he would last just five and two-third innings, giving up four runs, three of which were earned, on nine hits and three walks, while striking out three, in the Rays’ 4-2 lost. In the post-season, his record is 1-2 in three starts, as he would pitch ninteen and a third innings, giving up nine runs, eight of which were earned, on twenty-one hits and six walks, while striking out thirteen. His regular season record was 14-8 with a 3.56 ERA, as he would pitch in 33 games, going 215 innings, giving up 94 runs, 85 of which were earned, on 208 hits and 40 walks, while striking out 160. Shields will be going out to even the series at a game a piece, while trying to avoid getting hurt for the third straight game in the post-season. The Phillies will once again be trying to be patient with another Rays’ starter who have had even worst recent luck in the post-season than has last night’s starter Kazmir before striking the major blow, while hoping that Myers will be able to do well on the road for at least this game, before heading back home to the friendly confines of Citizens Bank Park and its very loud, screaming fans.

GO PHILLIES!!!

More by the numbers: Phillies’ Offense.

So how did the Phillies do offensively both individually and as a team? First, let take a look at how the Phillies did as a team. (Comment: When I put down worst, flip it over as it really means that they were near the bottom in a particularly bad offensive category. So, for example, eighth worst in total strike outs means that they have as a team actually struck out fewer times then have the seven teams above them.)

In 162 games, the team had a team batting average of .255, 10th best in the NL, which puts them in the middle of the pack. Their team slugging percentage was .438, second best in the league, while their on-base percentage was .322, the league’s seventh best offensive team. The team’s OPS (On-base percentage plus Slugging Percentage) was .770, third best in the league. The team went to the plate officially a total of 5509 times, for 10th best in the NL, while they went to the plate (TPA) a total of 6273 (seventh) times. They crossed home plate a total of 799 times, tied for second best in the league with the New York Mets. They had 1407 hits, once again for 10th place in the NL. Of those hits, 291 of them were doubles (ninth), 36 were triples (fourth) and 214 were home runs (1st) for a total of 541 Extra-Base Hits (2nd) and 2412 total bases (third). They had 762 RBIs (second), of which only 40 came via a sacrifice fly (12th). They had 71 sacrifice hits, which tied them for fourth place with the St. Louis Cardinals. They walked a total of 586 times (fifth) of which 68 were intentional (second). They were also hit by the pitch 67 times (fourth). They would strike out a total of 1117 times, for eighth worst in the league. They stole 136 bases (third), while being caught only 25 times (13th worst), giving them a SB% (Stolen Base Percentage) of 84.5, the best in the NL. They would hit into 108 double plays, for 12th worst in the league. They saw 24,124 pitches (sixth). They made 1516 ground outs (fourth most) and the same number of fly outs (1516, also fourth) for a GO/AO (Ground Out to Fly Out ratio) of 1.14 (11th worst).

Put together, this means that during the regular season, the Phillies was an offensive machine who, although they didn’t get many hits, were very likely to kill you with extra-base hits, mainly home runs and triples, and would score a lot of runs off of their opponents’ pitching. They were also a team that could get on base via the walk, partly because the opposing team would rather not allow themselves to be beaten by their big men. They would also steal a lot of bases and knew when to pick their spots when they did so. Overall, they would strike out very little and would hit into very few double plays. If they had an achillies’ heel, the team did not hit too many sacrifice flies, meaning that they didn’t do much small ball, although they did know how to move the runners over when they needed to. Also, they were an about average team when it came to taking opposing teams’ pitchers deep into counts.

Now individually. Ryan Howard lead the NL in most Home Runs (48) and RBIs (146), while ninth in runs scored (105) and sixth in slugging percentage (.543). Chase Utley was tied for 19th in batting avg. (.292), tied for ninth in home runs (33), eleventh in RBIs (104), tied for fifth in runs scored (113), tenth in hits (177), tenth in doubles (41) and ninth in slugging percentage (.535). Shane Victorino was the Phillies regular with the highest batting avg. (.293) which was 18th in the NL. He was also 13th in runs scored (102), sixth in stolen bases (36), and 5th in triples (8). Pat Burrell was tied for ninth in home runs (33) and tied for 20th in slugging percentage (.507). Jimmy Rollins was third in stolen bases with 47, tied for 18th in doubles (38), and fourth in triples (9).

This means that this is a very dangerous hitting club that should not be taken lightly, while the team’s star players were all, in their own ways, able to did a lot of damage to opposing teams’ pitching when they were given the chance to do so. 

National League Championship Series: Game 5: The Phillies Win the Pennant!!! The Phillies Win the Pennant!!!

Behind the five hit pitching of the National League Championship Series MVP Cole Hamels, the Phillies have defeated the Dodgers, 5-1, to win the NLCS four games to one. The Phillies are now in the World Series for the sixth time in the organization’s 126 years history and are now looking for their second World Series crown. The Phillies would strick first in the first inning as Jimmy Rollins would smack Chad Billingsley’s 3-2 fastball into the right center field seats for a lead-off home run, giving the Phillies a quick 1-0 lead. The Dodgers would threaten to tie the game in the second as they would put two men on base, via singles to James Loney and Matt Kemp, with only one out. But Hamels would get out of the jam as he would get Blake DeWitt to hit into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Kemp at second base. The Phillies would then increase their lead in the third, as, with runners on first and second, and two outs, Ryan Howard would get a RBI single, knocking in Rollins, who has earlier walked, and then steal second, giving the Phillies a 2-0 lead, while sending Chase Utley, who has also walked, over to third. Pat Burrell would then follow with a RBI single, scoring Utley, making it 3-0 Phillies, while sending Howard over to third. After a wild pitch by Billingsley would send Burrell over to second base to put two runners in scoring position, Billingsley would intentionally walk Shane Victorino to load the bases. Billingsley would then be taken out of the game by Joe Torre and be replaced on the mound by Chan Ho Park. Park would then end the inning by getting Pedro Feliz to ground out, 6-3. The Phillies would then put the game away in the fifth. Jayson Werth would start the inning off with a lead-off single. Utley would then hit into a force out, 3-6, that would wipe out Werth at second for the inning’s first out, while Utley would beat the throw back to first. Howard would then follow with a single, putting Utley on second base. Burrell would then hit a ground ball to Dodgers’ shortstop Rafael Furcal, who would proceed to first boot the ball off of his glove and then kick it away from himself with his left foot, for a fielding error. Utley, who was running on the play, would then turn around third and head for home, while Howard would round second and head for third. Furcal, after catching up with the ball, would then uncork a wild throw towards home plate which would get past Dodgers’ catcher Russell Martin, allowing Utley to score safely and make it a 4-0 Phillies lead as Furcal would receive his second error on the play. Meanwhile, Howard would stop at third, while Burrell would move up to second, with still one man out. Shane Victorino is then intentionally walked to load up the bases. Feliz would then strike out swinging for the inning’s second out. Carlos Ruiz would then come up and hit a grounder towards Furcal, who would then proceed to commit his third error of the inning as he threw the ball past Dodgers’ first baseman Loney, allowing Howard to cross the plate with the Phillies’ fifth run, giving the Phillies a 5-0 lead, while allowing Burrell to get to third and Victorino to move up to second, while leaving the bases still loaded. Hamels would then end the inning by grounding out to Loney at first. The Dodgers would then try to get back into the ballgame in their half of the fifth, as Casey Blake and Kemp would both reach base with back-to-back singles. But Hamels would then get DeWitt to hit into another double play, 4-6-3, wiping out Kemp at second for two outs, while sending Blake over to third. Hamels would then end the inning by striking out pinch hitter Jeff Kent swinging. The Dodgers would finally score a run in the sixth, as, with no one on base and two out, Manny Ramirez would hit a solo home run, his second home run of the series, to make it a 5-1 Phillies’ lead. Hamels would then end the inning by striking out Martin looking. The Dodgers would threaten again in the seventh, as, with two men out, first Kemp and then pinch hitter Nomar Garciaparra would both reach base on walks, putting runners on first and second. Hamels would then settle down enough to end the inning by striking out Kent, looking, on a 2-2 fastball. In the Dodgers’ eighth, after getting out the first two batters, Ryan Madson would give up a single to Ramirez. After Ramirez would move up to second base on defensive indifference, Madson would end the inning by getting Martin to ground out to Howard at first. In the bottom of the ninth, the Phillies would hand the ball over to their closer Brad Lidge. Lidge would give up a lead-off single to Loney. Lidge would then get Blake to fly out to Victorino in right center field for the inning’s first out. He would then get Kemp to hit a deep fly ball to center that would be caught in front of the fence by Victorino for the inning’s second out. After Loney would move up to second on defensive indifference, Lidge would end the game by getting Garciaparra to pop up a 3-2 slider into third base foul territory, which would be caught by Ruiz for the final out of the ballgame, sending the Phillies into the 2008 World Series.

Cole Hamels would get the win, as he would pitch seven strong innings, giving up only one earned run on five hits and three walks, while striking out five. His record in the series is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA, earning him the NLCS MVP. Ryan Madson would pitch an inning of scoreless relief, giving up only one hit. Brad Lidge would also pitch an inning of scoreless relief, giving up just one hit. Chad Billingsley would take the lost, as this time he would only last two and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on four hits and four walks, while striking out four. His series record is 0-2 with an 18.00 ERA. Chan Ho Park would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs or hits. Greg Maddux would pitch two innings, giving up two unearned runs on two hits and a walk, while striking out three. James McDonald would pitch two innings of shut out ball, giving up only one hit and a walk, while striking out two. Joe Beimel, Cory Wade and Hong-Chih Kuo would combine for two scoreless innings, giving up only one hit (Kuo), while striking out one (also Kuo).

Like in the fourth game in Milwaukee, the Phillies would take the Dodgers’ fateful out of the game early with Jimmy Rollins’ lead-off solo home run. The Phillies’ offense would then knock Dodgers’ starter Chad Billingsley out of the ballgame in the third by scoring two more runs against a pitcher who has wilted under the post-season spotlight. The Phillies would then get their last two runs in the fifth, thanks to three errors by Dodgers’ shortstop Rafael Furcal, who would commit four errors in the series, all of them detrimental to the Dodgers’ hope for a series victory. Meanwhile, Cole Hamels would pitch a superb game, getting the first two Dodgers’ batters out constantly, so that Manny Ramirez would be unable to do any major damage against him, so that his solo shot late in the game would turn out to have no effect upon the game’s final outcome. Hamels was also helped along by a pair of double play balls that were hit by Blake DeWitt that would help to defuse Dodgers’ rallies in the second and fifth innings, while a Russell Martin strike out would help end a post two out threat in the seventh. The Phillies’ bullpen was once again superb as both Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge would combine for two shut out innings, both giving up only one hit.  

With the victory, the Phillies can now relax for close to a week before they will finally face the American League Champion on October 22 in the home of the American League Champion. Of the two teams, I myself would prefer that the Phillies face the Boston Red Sox, as that would give them both a chance to snatch the World Series crown from the present champs as well as get revenge for the lost back in ’15. But, unless the Red Sox are able to pull off another trailing three games to one-three victories in a row senario, it looks like it’ll be a Phillies-Rays World Series, Fox’s ratings nightmare come true. And if it does, I’ll be laughing my head off, as this is what Fox gets for trying to overlook a couple of good teams because they were hoping for a Manny v. Red Sox wet dream. Shame on you, Fox. And, let go, PHILLIES!!!!

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