Results tagged ‘ Shea Stadium ’

Philadelphia Phillies – Records: Throwing a No-Hitter.

As mentioned in a previous article, there are several feats in baseball which is rare for baseball players to accomplish. Hitting for the cycle is one. Another is throwing a no-hitter. Throwing a perfect game is rarer still. In Major League Baseball History, as of 2008, there has been thrown only 256 no-hitters, of which only 1 has been perfect games. Four teams have so far not been able to throw a no-hitter, those teams being the New York Mets, the San Diego Padres, the Colorado Rockies and the Tampa Bay Rays. In Phillies’ team history, Phil pitchers have thrown only nine no-hitters, including one perfect game, while being the victim eighteen times, as well as being the victim in five other games that are now no longer considered no-hitters because of a rule change made in 1991 in which a no-hitter is now considered, “An official no-hit game occurs when a pitcher (or pitchers) allows no hits during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings.” The five that are no longer considered no-hitters were games that were stopped before being able to reach the now official nine innings, mainly because of either rain (or pre-1930s, because of the game being called because of darkness.) At this moment, I will concentrate on the nine no-hitters thrown by Phillies’ pitchers.

The first Phillies’ no-hitter would be thrown on Saturday, August 29, 1885, by Charlie Ferguson, as he would defeat Dupee Shaw of the Providence Grays, 1-0, at Recreation Park. The second Phillies’ no-hitter would occur on Friday, July 8, 1898, as Red Donahue would defeat the Boston Beaneaters, 5-0, at National League Park, aka Baker Bowl. The next Phillies’ no-hitter would be the first one thrown by a Phils’ pitcher in the 20th century as Chick Fraser would no-hit the Chicago Cubs in Chicago, 10-0, on Friday, September 18, 1903, at the second ballpark that the Cubs would name West Side Park, in the second game of a doubleheader split between the two old rivals. No-hitter number four would occur on Tuesday, May 1, 1906, in Brooklyn, as Johnny Lush would defeat the Brooklyn Superbas (now the Los Angeles Dodgers) at the second part that Brooklyn would call Washington Park, 6-0. The fifth Phillies no-hitter would not occur until Sunday, June 24, 1964 when Hall of Famer Jim Bunning would throw his father’s day perfect game against the New York Mets at Shea Stadium, winning 6-0. This would be the junior senator from Kentucky second no-hitter, as he threw an earlier one in 1958 as a member of the Detroit Tigers. The next no-hitter recorded by a Phillies’ pitcher would occur over seven years later, on Wednesday, June 23, 1971, as Rick Wise would help his own cause by hitting two home runs in a 4-0 defeat of Ross Grimsley of the Cincinnati Reds, in Cincinnati, at Riverfront Stadium. Phillies no-hitter number seven would be the first no-hitter to be thrown at Veterans Stadium, as Terry Mulholland would defeat Don Robinson of the San Francisco Giants 6-0, on Wednesday, August 15, 1990. No-hitter number eight, the last Phillies’ no-hitter of the 20th Century, would be the only no-hitter so far pitch outside of the U.S. by a Phillies’ pitcher as Tommy Greene would throw a no-no against the Montral Expos at Olympic Stadium, on Thursday, May 23, 1991, defeating Oil Can Boyd, 2-0. The Phillies’ ninth and most recent no-hitter, would also be the first no-no to be thrown by a Phils’ pitcher in the 21st Century, as well as the second and last one to be thrown at Veterans Stadium, as Kevin Millwood would defeat the Giants and Jesse Foppert, 1-0, on Sunday, April 27, 2003.

Phillies’ pitchers have thrown two no-hitters in the 19th Century, six in the 20th and one so far in the 21st Century. Of the nine no-hitters, four have been thrown in Philadelphia, one each has so far occurred in Chicago, Brooklyn, Cincinnati, and Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Two no-hitters were thrown at Veterans Stadium, with one each being thrown at Recreation Park, National League Park (Baker Bowl), West Side Park (II), Washington Park (II), Shea Stadium, Riverfront Stadium and Olympic Stadium. The main victim has so far been the San Francisco Giants, who have been no-noed twice, with the now defunct Providence Grays, Braves (as the Boston Beaneaters), Cubs, Dodgers (as the Brooklyn Superbas), Mets, Reds and the Nationals (as the Montreal Expos) being the victim one time each. Only one of the pitchers to throw a Phillies’ no-hitter, Jim Bunning, is now a member of the Hall of Fame.

Who will be the next Phillies’ pitcher to no-hit an opponent? No idea at this point in time, although the most likely person to do it would be Cole Hamels, the team’s present ace.

Sources: Wikipedia, Phillies.com, Baseball Almanac.com, Retrosheet.org

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Games 2 & 1: On the threshold of Winning the Eastern Division.

The Phillies (90-70) will conclude their final home stand of the regular season with the Nationals (59-100) with a game this afternoon, which will be nationally televised by Fox Sports and another game tomorrow afternoon. Today’s game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern, to be shown on Fox Sports. The Phillies’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (15-7, 3.78), who is coming off a victory over the Marlins on September 21, where he went six innings, giving up only one earned run on six scattered hits, in the Phils’ 5-2 win. In his last start against the Nats on August 21, he would receive a no-decision as he went six and one third innings, giving up just an earned run on five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-3 lost. He will be trying for both his team leading sixteenth victory and for the second straight year of pitching the Phillies into the playoffs, if the Marlins don’t defeat the Mets earlier today. The Nationals will counter with John Lannan (9-14, 3.86), who is coming off a lost to the Padres on September 20, when he went seven innings, giving up four runs, only one of which was earned, on four hits, in the Nationals’ 6-1 lost. In his last two starts against the Phillies, his record is 0-2, where he pitched a combined total of eleven and two-thirds innings, giving up eight earned runs on fourteen hits. He will be trying to get his tenth victory of the season while trying to see if he can stop the Phillies’ clinching celebration for one more day.

Tomorrow afternoon’s game, which will be the Phillies’ Fan Appreciation Day, will start at 1:35 pm Eastern. If the Phillies do not clinch the division today, their starter for tomorrow’s game will be their ace Cole Hamels (14-10, 2.09), who is coming off a hard lost against the Braves on September 23, where he pitched seven innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on eight hits, in the Phillies’ 3-2 lost. In his last start against the Nationals on September 2, he would get the victory as he pitched seven and a third innings of shut out ball, giving up only five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-0 win. He would be going for win number fifteen and clinching the division for the Phillies, and thus ending the Mets’ hope of gaining the divisional pennant. If the Phillies clinch on Saturday, their starter will more than likely be the rookie J.A. Happ (1-0, 3.90), who pitched a no-decision in his previous start against the Braves on September 22, going six and two-thirds innings, giving up only two earned runs on five hits, in the Phillies’ 6-2 win. He has faced the Nationals once before this season, pitching an inning of relief on September 1, giving up no earned runs on one hit, in the Phillies’ 7-4 lost. He has started four games, going 1-0 with three no-decisions, all of which the Phillies would win. He will be trying for his second victory of the year. Either pitcher will be opposed by Odalis Perez (7-11, 4.27), who is coming off a no-decision against the Padres on September 21, going six innings, as he gave up three earned runs on five hits, in the Nationals’ 6-2 lost. He will be trying to improve his record and if the pennant race is still on, ruin the Phillies’ chance to clinch the pennant.

The Phillies are presently ahead of the Mets in the East by two games as they play the Marlins in the next to last game to be played inside Shea Stadium, with the Phillies’ magic number to win the division at one. In the Wild Card race, the Brewers now lead the Mets by one game as they get ready to face the Cubs, with their magic number to clinch the Wild Card at two. The Phillies can clnch the East this afternoon, with the clinching party being seen on national television, if the Mets haven’t lost to the Marlins by the start of the ballgame. Whatever happens, the Phillies just need to take care of their own buisness and beat the Nationals. GO PHILLIES!!!!

Final Countdown to the Playoffs: Game 3: Making the final push to either win the Eastern Division or the Wild Card, with the Magic Number at 3 in both.

The Phillies (89-70) will play their last three games series of the regular season as they get ready to host the last place Nationals (59-99) who will be trying to act as spoiler while trying to avoid both losing 100 games and having the worst record in the majors. The first game of the three games series will be play tonight, weather permitting, at Citizens Bank Park and will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Joe Blanton (8-12 (3-0), 4.79), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on September 20, where he pitched five innings, giving up only two earned runs on only four hits and striking out nine while walking just two, in the Phillies’ 3-2 win. Blanton has won two of his last three starts while holding his own in his other start which the Phillies won. In his two previous starts against Washington, he has two no-decisions, while the Phillies’ record is 1-1 in those starts, as he would go a combine total of nine innings, giving up eight earned runs on fifteen hits. He will be trying for his second straight win and pitching a little better against the Nats, while trying to help the Phillies get a little bit closer to winning the pennant. The Nationals will counter with Collin Balester (3-6, 4.83), who is coming off a no-decision against the Padres on September 19, where he went five innings, giving up five earned runs on nine hits, in the Nationals’ 11-6 lost. In his previous two starts against the Phillies, he is 0-2, going a combined total of twelve innings, giving up five earned runs on thirteen hits. He will be trying to improve his season record and hoping to help spoil the Phillies’ run towards the playoffs.

The Phillies’ offense has gone calm in its last two games, while the team overall has committed several base running and fielding blunders that would help them lost their last series with the Braves. Charlie Manuel obviously did not like what he saw as he has after Wednesday night’s game ordered a team meeting for today, which is to start at 3:15 pm, just over an hour from now. Hopefully he will adress the problems that he had saw in those two games and get these guys to thinking that they need to start acting like they did when they won 10 of 11 games, and thereby take care of business with the Nationals if they want to get into the playoffs. The best advice he could give the batters is to act patiently while going against Nationals pitching, especially since they won’t have to worry about batting against Phillies’ killer Tim Redding.

The Phillies are presently leading the Mets in the Easten Division by a game as they defeated the Cubs. In the Wild Card chase, the Mets and Brewers are tied for the lead, both a game behind the Phillies, as the Brewers defeated the Pirates. As the Phillies plan to play the Nationals, the Mets will be facing the Marlins for three, the last games to be played in Shea Stadium, while the Brewers will be playing the Cubs for three in Miller Park. Both the Phillies-Nationals and Mets-Marlins series are threaten by the weather as rain is expected to covered both cities both today and most of tomorrow. This is going to be one very interesting weekend as three teams fight it out for the last two playoff spots in the National League, the Eastern Division flag and the Wild Card. The Phillies are in the driver seat leading in both, but they have a tendency to make things more interesting than they should. Three teams, two spots. Which one will be the odd man out? I don’t know, but I’m praying like crazy it won’t be our Phils. GO PHILLIES!!!!!!

Tropical Storm Hannah forces postponement; Phillies to face the Mets tomorrow in a day-night doubleheader, hoping for a sweep of the final series between the two teams at Shea Stadium.

Thanks to the appearance of Tropical Storn Hannah on the East Coast of the U.S., the Saturday afternoon game between the Phillies (77-64) and the Mets (79-62) has been postponed. Instead, the two contenders for the National League East will be playing a day-night doubleheader in Shea Stadium tomorrow. These will be the final games to be played between these two rivals in Shea Stadium.

The first game of the twinbill will start at 2:15 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be the 45-years old veteran Jamie Moyer (12-7, 3.80), who is coming off a win against the Cubs on August 31, where he went five and a third innings, giving up only two earned runs on eight hits (all singles), in the Phillies’ 5-3 win. Moyer has given up three runs or less in fifteen of his last sixteen starts, and plans to make it sixteen in his last seventeen, while planning to improve on his 1-1, 4.40 ERA in five starts record against the Mets. Moyer will be trying for his team leading thirtenth victory while hoping to shut down the Mets’ bats, redeeming himself for being roughed up by the Mets on August 26, only going three innings as he gave up six earned runs on nine hits, in the Phillies’ 8-7 dramatic, come from behind, extra-innings win. The Mets will be sending to the mound Pedro Martinez (5-3, 5.07), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on August 31, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on seven hits, in the Mets’ 6-2 win. In his last start against the Phillies, also on August 26, Martinez would get a no-decision as he is forced out of the game early, as he goes only five innings, giving up five earned runs on seven hits, in the Mets’ 8-7 extra-innings lost. Martinez is 3-2 against the Phils since joining the Mets in 2005. His will be trying to improve his record while trying to last a bit longer than he did a week ago.

The second game of the doubleheader will be a battle between team aces that will be televised nationally on ESPN. The game will begin at 8:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Cole Hamels (12-8, 3.01), who is coming off a win against the Nationals on September 2, as he went seven and one-third shut out innings, giving up five hits, in the Phillies’ 4-0 win. Hamels has won three of his last four starts, all of them quality starts, while being dominating in the two starts that were shown before a national audience. Like Moyer, he plans to win his thirteenth start, while trying to win his third straight start in the national spotlight. The Mets will counter with Johan Santana (12-7, 2.71), who is coming off a no-decision against the Brewers on September 1, as he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on seven hits, in the Mets’ 4-2 win. In his last start against the Phillies on August 27 he, like Martinez, would leave the game early, receiving a no-decision as he went only six innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits, in the Mets’ 6-3 come from behind win. His record against the Phillies in four previous starts is 1-0 with three no-decisions. He will be trying for his second win against the Phillies while trying to keep the Phillies’ offense quiet.

The Phillies’ batters will once again try to remain patient against both Martinez and Santana, forcing them into enough deep counts so that both men will have to leave their games early and will then try to dismantle the Mets’ bullpen. At the same time, the Phillies’ starters will try to pitch long enough into the game so that they will give the bullpen a much needed rest, while hoping that the deep end of the pen won’t create another eighth inning fiasco.

The Phillies trail the Mets by two games as they go into the double header tomorrow while they presently lead the Marlins by five games as the fish prepares to meet the Cardinals later tonight. In the wild card race, the Phillies now trail the slumping Brewers by four games, while they are ahead of the Cardinals by two, the Astros by three and the Marlins by five games. The Phillies hope to come back home trailing the Mets by no worst than two games, if not in fact tied for first place, before they face the Marlins for three games and the Brewers for four.

The Phillies cut the Mets’ lead to two games behind Brett Myers’ eight innings of shut out ball as they defeated the Mets, 3-0.

Behind Brett Myers’ eight innings of three-hit, shut out, ball, the Phillies would take the opening game of their three games series with the Mets, 3-0. The Phillies would strike first in the first inning, as, with a runner on third and one out, Chase Utley would hit a ground ball to first, for the inning’s second out, knocking in Shane Victorino, who has earlier singled, stole second, and has gone to third on Mets’ catcher Brian Schneider throwing error into center field, to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead. The Mets would try to tie the game in their half of the first as they would put two men on base, Daniel Murphy on second via a double and David Wright on first via a walk, with only one out. But Phillies’ starter Brett Myers would get out of the inning as he would get Carlos Delgado to hit into a 4-6-3 double play, wiping out Wright at second, to end the inning. The Mets would threaten again in the second inning, as Carlos Beltran would start off the inning with a lead-off double. Myers would then proceed to strike out the next two batters, Ryan Church (swinging) and Luis Castillo (called), for out numbers one and two of the inning. After he intentionally walks Schneider, Myers would proceed to strike out Mets’ starter Mike Pelfrey to end the inning and keep the Phils’ leading 1-0. The game would then become a pitchers’ duel between Pelfrey and Myers, with neither offense being able to do anything against the other team’s starter, especially the Mets with Myers as he would mow them down with little trouble in the third, fourth and fifth innings. The Mets would then try to rally in the sixth, when, with one out, Murphy would get on base with a double, his second double of the game. After a conference on the mound with Rich Dubee and the infielders, Dubee would head back to the dugout. As he does, he appears to have said some words to home plate umpire Paul Emmel, who would then eject Dubee from the ballgame. But, despite this excitement, Myers would refuse to break as he gets Wright to pop up to the second baseman for the inning’s second out, before getting Delgado to fly out to center to end the inning, still 1-0 Phils. The Phillies would then get some breathing room in the seventh, as, with a runner on first and two outs, Greg Dobbs would hit a two-run home run that barely got past the glove of right fielder Church, his seventh home of the year, scoring Ryan Howard, who has earlier walked, to give the Phillies a 3-0 lead. Myers would then proceed to mow down the next six men that he would face, before handing the ball over to Brad Lidge to handle the ninth. After getting the first batter to fly out, Lidge would give up a ground-rule double to Wright, followed by a single to Delgado, putting runners on the corners, as Wright would stop at third. Lidge would then get Beltran to fly out to left fielder Eric Bruntlett, which would force Wright to go back to third, for the inning’s second out. Lidge would then get Church to fly out deep to center field for the final out of the game, as he records his thirty-fourth save in as many tries.

Brett Myers would get the win, as he pitches eight innings of shut out ball, giving up only three hits and striking out ten Mets’ batters. His record is now 9-10, 6-1 since coming back from the minors, as his ERA drops to 4.19. Brad Lidges pitches a scoreless ninth, as he gives up two hits while recording his thirty-fourth save. Mike Pelfrey would get the lost, as he goes seven innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on four hits. His record is now 13-9 with an ERA of 3.62. Brian Stokes, Ricardo Rincon and Duaner Sanchez would combine to pitch two innings of scoreless ball, giving up no hits between them.

Brett Myers has come through once again, as he pitches eighth strong innings, giving up only three hits and two walks to the Mets, although all three Mets’ hits would be doubles, while striking out ten Mets’ batters, doing it against a team that would normally be hard to strike out. Now it will be Jamie Moyer’s turn to come through for the Phillies

The Phillies (77-64) will continue their three games series with the Mets (79-62). The game will be played at Shea Stadium and will start at 3:55 pm Eastern, to be televised nationally by Fox Sports, depending on the weather. The Phillies’ starter will be Jamie Moyer (12-7, 3.80), who is coming off a win against the Cubs on August 31, where he went five and one third innings, giving up only two earned runs on eight hits, in the Phillies’ 5-3 win. Moyer will be trying for his thirteenth win while trying to win the Phillies second straight victory over the Mets and decrease the Mets’ lead to one game in the East. The Mets’ starter will be Pedro Martinez (5-3, 5.07), who is coming off a win against the Marlins on August 31, where he went six innings, giving up two earned runs on seven hits, in the Mets’ 6-2 win. He will be trying to improve his record while trying to put the Phillies once again three games behind.

The Phillies are now two games behind the Mets after their win, while they are ahead of the Marlins by five games as the fish defeated the redbirds in St. Louis. The Phillies will be trying for their first series win against the Mets this year while hoping that the game won’t be rained out.

The Phillies begins a series with the Mets, hoping to stay close to first place in the East.

The second place Phillies (76-64) prepare to face the first place Mets (79-61) for the last time this season, with first place on the line, for a three games series in New York. The game will be played at Shea Stadium and will start at 7:10 pm tonight. The Phillies’ starter will be their hottest pitcher, Brett Meyer (8-10, 4.40), who is 5-1 with a ERA of 1.78 along with two no-decisions in which the Phillies are 1-1, in his last eight starts. He is coming off a victory against the Cubs on August 30, where he pitched seven plus innings, giving up two earned runs on eleven hits (all singles) and eight strikeouts, in the Phillies’ 5-2 win. His last start against the Mets on July 23, he went five innings, giving up three earned runs on three hits and five walks, in the Phillies’ 6-3 lost. He will be looking for his sixth win since coming back from his minor league stint while bringing the Phillies closer to first place. His opponent will be Mike Pelfrey (13-8, 3.66), who is coming off a no-decision against the Marlins on August 30, where he went six and two-thirds innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits, in the Mets’ 4-3 lost. He will be trying to improve his record while also trying to put some more distance between the Mets and the Phillies.

The Phillies will be coming to New York, trying to sweep their first series from the Mets since last September, as they make their last visit to Shea Stadium, which will be replaced by a new stadium next season. The Phillies will be sending against the Mets their present hot starter (Brett Myers), the 45-years old veteran (Jamie Moyer) and their ace (Cole Hamels), praying that they can shut down the Mets’ offense while their own offense attempts to run up the pitch count of the Mets’ starters and get at the Billy Wagner-less bullpen. The offense has been showing signs that it could bust loose at any time. Now would be the most appropriate time for it to bust out. Otherwise, the team will be seeing itself in a bigger hole than it did last year at this time as it doesn’t appear that this year’s Mets team will have as dramatic a collapse as it did last year. The Phillies need to take care of business NOW if they don’t want the Mets to give them the buisness this weekend.

The Phillies are now trailing the Mets as they prepare to meet them for a three games series. The Phillies are ahead of the Marlins by five games as they prepare for a three games weekend series with the Cardinals.

The Phillies leave Chicago with a split as they defeat the Cubs, 5-3.

Behind the pitching of Jamie Moyer, Chad Durbin and Brad Lidge, and the Phillies’ offense, the Phillies would be able to leave Chicago with a split, 5-3. The Phillies would take the lead in the first inning as they went to work on Cubs’ starter Sean Marshall, who was pitching in place of the original starter, Carlos Zambrano, who would claim that he has a ‘dead’ arm. With a runner on second and two outs, Ryan Howard would hit a RBI single, scoring Chase Utley, who has gotten on base earlier with a walk, and then stole second, to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead. Two batters latter, Jayson Werth would hit a two-run double, scoring Howard, who has gone to second on Shane Victorino’s single, and Victorino, who has singled, to make it 3-0 Phillies. The Cubs would cut the Phillies’ lead in the second, when, with runners on the corners and one man out, Ronny Cedeno would hit a RBI single, scoring Mark DeRosa, who has earlier singled, would go to second on Geovany Soto’s single and then went to third on Kosuke Fukudome’s force out that would wipe out Soto at second, to make it 3-1 Phillies, while Fukudome would move over to second. The ball should’ve been caught by Victorino in left center field for the inning’s second out, but because there were no clouds overhead, Victorino would have a hard time trying to see the ball, before it would finally bounce off of his right thigh towards Pat Burrell, who would in turn be unable to catch it, as it dropped in for the RBI single. Marshall would then follow with an RBI single of his own, getting it past Utley, who has headed towards first because Marshall made it look like that he was going to put down a sacrifice bunt, scoring Fukudome, and sending Cedeno to second, making it 3-2 Phillies. Phillies’ starter Jamie Moyer would finally end the threat by getting both Alfonso Soriano and Reed Johnson to fly out. The Phillies would add to their lead in the fifth, as, with two men out, Werth would hit his twenty-first home run of the year to give the Phillies a 4-2 lead. The Phils would add their final run in the sixth, as, with a runner on third and one out, Jimmy Rollins would hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier reached base with a double and then went to third on Moyer’s sacrifice bunt, making it 5-2 Phils. The Cubs would threaten to rally in their half of the sixth as they put runners on first (Cedeno-walk) and second (Fukudome-single), with one out. Charlie Manuel would take out Moyer and replace him with Chad Durbin. Durbin would then proceed to get out of the inning by first striking out pinch hitter Ryan Theriot and then getting Soriano to pop out to second. In the eighth, after getting the inning’s first out, Durbin would give up a single to Soto. Manuel would come out and replace Durbin with the previous day’s hero, J.C. Romero. Romero would throw a wild pitch that would send Soto over to second. He would then get Fukudome to ground out, second to first, for the inning’s second out, while Soto would go on to third. Pinch hitter Henry Blanco would then get a pinch single, scoring Soto, cutting the Phillies’ lead to 5-3. Manuel would then come out again and replace Romero with Ryan Madson. Madson would then give up a pinch single to pinch hitter Daryle Ward to put runners on first and second. After Ward is replaced on first by pinch runner Mike Fontenot, Madson would end the inning by striking out Soriano. Brad Lidge would then come in to pitch the ninth, and would records his thirty-third save by pitching a 1-2-3 inning.

Jamie Moyer would get the win as he pitches five and a third innings, giving up only two earned runs on eight hits. His record is now 12-7 with a 3.80 ERA. Chad Durbin would pitch two innings, giving up an earned run on one hit. J.C. Romero and Ryan Madson would each pitch a third of an inning, giving up one hit each. Brad Lidge would pitch a scoreless ninth inning as he recorded his thirty-third save in thirty-three tries. Sean Marshall would get the lost as he pitches five and a third innings, giving up five earned runs on nine hits. His record is now 3-4 with a 4.03 ERA. Jeff Samardzija, Bob Howry and Neal Cotts would combine for three scoreless innings, giving up three hits (Howry (1) and Cott (2)).

The Phillies’ offense would this time score enough runs to win, as they split the four games series and win the season series with the Cubs, while getting twelve hits that would this time be more evenly spread around among the starting eight, with only Pedro Feliz getting the collar. Ryan Howard would lead the offense with three hits, two singles and a double, knocking in a run, while scoring one run. Shane Victornio, Chase Utley and Jayson Werth would follow with two hits each, each scoring a run, while Werth would knock in three of the Phillies’ other runs. Chad Durbin, J.C. Romero and Ryan Madson would all combine to get the Phillies through the eighth inning this time, giving up only one run to the Cubs before Brad Lidge would come in to shut the Cubs down in the ninth.

The Phillies (75-62) will now go on to Washington to start a three games series with the presently hot Nationals (52-85). The game will be played in Nationals Park and will begin at 3:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Kyle Kendrick (11-7, 4.83), who is coming off a no-decision against the Mets on August 27, where he went five plus innings, giving up two earned runs on eight hits, in the Phillies’ 6-3 lost. Lifetime against the Nationals, he is 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in four starts. He will be trying once again for his twelfth win, while seeing if he can cool down the presently hot Nationals. The Nationals will counter with Tim Redding (9-8, 4.54), who is coming off a win against the Dodgers on August 27, where he went six innings, giving up only three earned runs on eight hits, in the Nats’ 5-4 win. He will be trying for his tenth win while seeing if he can defeat the Phillies once again this season.

The Phillies are still a game behind the Mets and five games ahead of the Mets as the Mets defeated the fish. The Phillies will be seeing if they can win the series in Washington and tie for the divisional lead in the East before their weekend series with the Mets in their last trip to Shea Stadium.

Welcoming a cross-state rival, trying to see if they can send same packing with a series loss.

The Phillies (62-52) will be welcoming back to Philadelphia the once proud Pirates (52-62, 5th National League Central) for a three games weekend series. The first game of the series will be played tonight at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Joe Blanton (6-12, 4.94), who is coming off his first victory as a Phil against the Cardinals on August 2, when he went seven very strong innings, giving up only an earned run on four hits, in the Phillies’ 2-1 win. This will be his first career start against the Bucos. He will be looking for his second win as a Phil, eating up the innings as he does so, while trying to continue Pittsburgh’s present woes. His opponent will be Pete Maholm (7-7, 3.95), who is coming off a lost to the Cubs on August 2, as he got bombed by the presently mighty Cubs, giving up five earned in six innings of work on eight hits, in the Pirates’ 5-1 lost. He has faced the Phillies earlier this year, pitching a complete game against them on April 27, giving up only one earned run on two hits, in the Pirates’ 5-1 win. He hopes to improve his present record while hoping that the Phillies’ batters won’t do any better against him this time around.

There are presently rumbling among both the fan blogs’ and Philly sports writers over the inconsistenty of the Phillies’ offense, an offense that for one or several days will score five or more runs without any problem, and the next can’t seem to be able to even buy a run, making the opposing starter look like Cy Young in the process, while forcing their own starters to be almost picture perfect with some very sad results. I don’t know if this goes back to hitting coach Milt Thompson or not, but it does go to how this team is built. Too much concentration on the long ball and too little concentration on having guys, especially those in the 6-7-8 holes in the battling line-up, being able to make contact to not just put the ball in play, but to follow the late Wee Willie Keeler’s maxim of hitting them where they ain’t, and unfortunately, the guys are hitting them right where the opposition fielders are. And, as I have stated here several times before, they are not doing enough small ball to try and put pressure on the opposition. (Exception being Shane Victorino, as every time he gets on, he puts on the pressure with his threat to steal a base, although I have seem to have noticed a lack of that happening right now. Maybe the home run bug has made him forget about just getting on base and making the defense nervous?) So, if it is Milt Thompson, I have this question: Is there anyone in the present organization who can make these guys do the little things, i.e., small ball, whether they like it or not, and can do it as soon as he shows up? If there isn’t such a person, then firing Thompson now won’t mean anything if they don’t have anyone waiting in the wings who can take charge as soon as he arrive and show these home run hitters the reality that small ball helps a lot more than home runs when it come to be a more consistent run scoring team.

The Phillies’ lead over the Marlins is a game and a half and two games over the Mets as the two teams prepare to face each other at Shea Stadium for a weekend series. The Phillies lead the Braves by nine and a half games as the Braves’ win over the Diamondbacks in Arizona. The Phillies will be trying to take advantage of the once powerful Pirates and try to come away with a sweep at best or a series win at worst while hoping that their two nearest rivals in the East will end up cancelling each other out by the time the weekend is over.

Cole Hamels is once again denied his tenth win as Marlins’ pitchers would throw a four hit shutout at the Phillies’ offense.

Cole Hamels is once again denied winning his tenth victory of the season, although he would pitch a lot better than he did in his previous two starts, as the Phillies fall to the Marlins’, 3-0. The Marlins would score their first run in the second when, with a runner on second and two outs, Matt Treanor would hit a RBI single, scoring Dan Uggla, who has gotten on base earlier with a two-out double to give the Marlins a 1-0 lead. The game would then becomes a pitchers’ duel between Hamels and Marlins’ starter Chris Volstad until the sixth, when with a runner on second and two outs, Josh Willingham would hit a RBI double, scoring Jeremy Hermida, who would has earlier singled and stole second, to make it 2-0 Marlins. Then in the seventh, the Marlins’ would score their final run, as, with the bases loaded and one man out, and with Ryan Madson pitching in relief of Hamels, Hanley Ramirez would hit into a RBI ground out, short to first, scoring Cody Ross, who has gotten on base earlier with a single, to make it 3-0 Florida. That would be the final score as Marlins’ pitching would put out the only Phillies’ rally, runners on first and second, with two out in the eighth, as Matt Lindstrom would get Geoff Jenkins to ground out.

Cole Hamels would take the lost, his third lost in his last six starts, which would include three no-decisions, for which the Phillies are 2-1, as he would pitch six and a third innings, giving up three runs, two of which were earned, on seven hits. His record is now 9-8 with a 3.35 ERA. Ryan Madson would pitch two thirds of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Clay Condrey and Brad Lidge would each pitch a scoreless inning, giving up only two hits, both against Lidge. Chris Volstad would get the win, as he throws six scoreless innings, as he three hits the Phils. His record is now 3-2 with a 2.67 ERA. Joe Nelson, Arthur Rhodes and Matt Lindstrom would combine to pitch two scoreless innings against the Phillies, giving up only one hit between them (Rhodes). Kevin Gregg would get the save, his twenty-fifth of the year, as he pitches a scoreless ninth.

The Phillies’ offense would once again be put to sleep as they are only able to get three hits, all singles against Volstad, while getting only four hits overall, with the last one being their lone extra-base hit, a double. Seriously, what is it going to take for the offense to stop Randy Lerching Cole Hamels, forcing him to be practically near perfect to win his starts? Something has got to give, either him telling his teammates off, or the offense starting to crank out runs. Hopefully it’ll be the later and not the former.

The Phillies (62-52) will continue their six games home stand as they prepare to welcome the lowly Pirates (52-62, 5th National League Central) for three weekend games. The first game will be played tomorrow night at Citizens Bank Park. The game will start at 7:05 pm Eastern. The Phillies’ starter will be Joe Blanton (6-12, 4.94), who is coming off his first victory as a Phil against the Cardinals on August 2, as he went seven innings, giving up only an earned run on four hits, in the Phillies’ 2-1 win. This will be his first start against the Bucos since being traded to the Phillies. He will be looking for his second win as a Phil while trying to continue Pittsburgh’s present woes. His opponent will be Pete Maholm (7-7, 3.95), who is coming off a lost to the Cubs on August 2, as he got bombed by the Cubbies, giving up five earned in six innings of work on eight hits, in the Pirates’ 5-1 lost. He has faced the Phillies earlier this year, pitching a complete game against them on April 27, giving up only one earned run on two hits. He hopes to improve his record while hoping that the Phillies’ batters won’t do any better against him this time around.

The Phillies lead against the Marlins is now down to a game and a half thanks to the lost, as the Marlins go on to New York to face the Mets. The Mets now trail by two games, defeating the Padres, as they prepare to welcome the Marlins at Shea Stadium. The Braves presently trail the Phillies by ten games as they start a four games series with the Diamondbacks in Arizona. The Phillies will be trying to put a little distance between them and their nearest opponent as they prepare to face one of the weakest teams in the National League while hoping that the Mets and the Marlins will hurt each other during their three games series.

The Phillies’ offense vanishes again as they lose to the Mets, 6-3.

The Phillies’ offense would perform its usual vanishing act as they fall to the Mets, 6-3, once again ending up being tied with the Mets for first place in the East. The Phillies’ returning starter Brett Myers would start out with his familiar first inning problems. After getting Jose Reyes to ground out, second to first, Myers would give up three straight walks to Endy Chavez, David Wright and Carlos Delgado to load the bases. He would then give up his fourth straight pass to Carlos Beltran, forcing in Chavez, to give the Mets a 1-0 lead, while leaving the bases still loaded. Marlon Anderson would then make it 2-0 Mets, as he would hit a ground ball that would get pass Ryan Howard, but would be grabbed by Chase Utley, who would throw it over to Myers for the second out, while Wright scores and Delgado and Beltran both move up a base. Myers would finally get out of the inning on a ground out by Damion Easley, third to first. The Phillies would then tie the game in the second when Shane Victorino and Geoff Jenkins would hit back-to-back home runs off of Mets’ starter John Maine. Victornio’s home run would be his seventh home run of the year while Jenkins’ would be his ninth home run of the year. The Mets would retake the lead in the third as another walk would get Myers into trouble. After getting Chavez to ground out, second to first, Myers would give up his fifth and final walk to Wright. He would then hit Delgado, after getting ahead of him, to put two men on base. Beltran would then get a single, the first Mets’ hit of the game, to load the bases. Myers would then get Anderson to strike out for the inning’s second out. But he would then give up a single to Easley, which would knock in Wright to give the Mets a 3-2 lead. Brian Schneider would then ground out, second to first, to end the inning. The Phillies would retie the game in the fifth, as Jimmy Rollins would hit a RBI double, scoring Carlos Ruiz, who has earlier singled. The Mets would then take the lead for good in the sixth inning as Reyes would hit a three-run home run off of Ryan Madson, his eleventh home run of the year, scoring Easley and Schneider, who have both gotten on base with singles, to give the Mets a 6-3 lead. That would end up being the final score as Billy Wagner would come in the ninth to record his twenty-fifth save of the year.

Brett Myers would get a no-decision as he pitches a somewhat awful five innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits, while walking five batters and hitting another, three of whom would later score. Ryan Madson would take the lost, as he pitches an inning, giving up three earned runs on four hits. His record is now 2-1 with a 3.14 ERA. Clay Condrey would pitch two innings, giving up no runs on three hits. John Maine would get the win, going seven innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits. His record is now 9-7 with a 4.20 ERA. Scott Schoeneweis would pitch two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Joe Smith would pitch a third of an inning, giving up no runs on no hits. Billy Wagner would come in in the ninth and record his twenty-fifth save of the year as he would go an inning, giving up no runs on no hits.

Once again the inconsistent Phillies’ offense, after performing a spectular come from behind victory on Tuesday night, would do almost nothing on Wednesday night, as they lose to the Mets. Once again, someone need to come out and act like a team leader and start telling the others what they need to do if they are going to win the division again. Otherwise, they are going to go nowhere when the post-season comes around.

The three games series between the Phillies (54-47) and the Mets (54-47) will conclude this afternoon from Shea Stadium. The game will begin at 12:10 pm Eastern. The Phillies will send to the mound Jamie Moyer (9-6, 3.90), who is coming off an excellent start against the Marlins on July 18, going six innings, giving up only two earned runs on four hits, in the Phillies’ 4-2 win. Moyer has won his last two starts, giving up two earned runs or less in both starts. He will be trying for his tenth win of the year while trying to put the Phillies back into sole possession of first place. The Mets will counter with Oliver Perez (6-6, 4.36), who is coming off a lost against the Reds on July 19, going six innings as well, while giving up three runs, two of which were earned, on six hits, in the Mets’ 7-2 lost. He will be trying to record his seventh win of the year while trying to give the Mets the lead in the East.

The Phillies are once again tied for first place with the Mets while they prepare to face the Mets in the rubber game of their three games series. The Marlins continue to trail by a game as they’d lost to the Braves. They will now start a four games series against the National League Central leading Chicago Cubs at Chicago. The Braves are now traling the Phils and the Mets by six games as they take the day off, before they meet the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park for a three games weekend series. The Phillies will be trying to gain their first series win of the second half while trying to regain sole control of first place in the East before going back home to meet the Braves.

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