Lidge saved a game? Whew! Please excuse my sarcasm…Brad Lidge, who has been just awful this year, saved a very close game tonight. With 2 men on base, Lidge got the final batter out on a long fly ball to left field. Another nail biter, but the 3-2 win over the Braves is ultimately what counts.
Shane Victorino had an interesting game as well. While Victorino only had 1 hit in the game and popped up with 1 out and a man on third, he made up for offensive outage with 2 amazing catches in deep centerfield. On the first one, he jumped in the air and shot backwards into the outfield wall as he saved an extra base hit. The second one was equally impressive as he caught the ball behind him while running at full speed. Nice job Shane! Those two grabs absolutely saved the game for the Phillies.
The only real offense in the game was a 2-run homer from Chase Utley in the 4th inning to tie the game up. After that, things got eerily quiet for a long time. But Ryan Howard broke the silence, and the tie, with a solo home run to lead off the 8th inning. That turned out to be all the Phillies needed.
But the pitching was the real story; Joe Blanton continues to amaze as he went 7 strong innings with only 1 earned run allowed. The other run was unearned after a Pedro Feliz error at third base, his 11th error of the year. Ryan Madson pitched the 8th and only needed 6 pitches to silence the Braves. And you already know how Lidge did.
But frankly, Lidge is still a BIG concern for this team. He cannot get through an inning without base runners and without getting hit hard. He got out of it tonight, but again, it was not pretty. With 7 blown saves on the season and the highest ERA among NL closers, Lidge makes everyone’s tummy turn.
But all is well that ends well and this one did just that. The Phillies have a huge opportunity here to BURY the Braves and end their season if they can get at least 2 out of 3 in this series. The battle continues tomorrow at 4:00pm. Go Phillies!
Photo by Jenn