The Phillies hopped on board the Chooch Train last night and rode it to a win over the Dodgers; Carlos Ruiz smashed a 3-run homer in the 5th inning to give the Phillies a lead that they would never relinquish. Raul Ibanez hit a 3-run shot of his own in the 8th to pad that lead. That Ibanez guy is not too shabby either.
It was not all sunshine and roses though for the Phillies. Cole Hamels looked like the pitcher of old for 4 innings but then, after Chooch’s 3-run shot and Ryan Howard’s 2 RBI in the 5th blasted the Phillies to that big 5-1 lead, Hamels began to unravel. The Cardinal Sin in baseball – to give the other team a boost after you just put a hurting on them.
Hamels allowed a lead-off double, a single and then appeared to have a double play ball hit to Jimmy Rollins. The ball got stuck in his glove so the feed to Chase Utley was late and Utley overthrew to first in his haste. But Hamels still had a 3 run lead and 2 outs. Instead of focusing on that, he showed up his teammate by throwing his hands up in disgust at Utley, putting his hands on his hips and shaking his head. Cardinal Sin #2 – showing up your teammate. Hamels could not concentrate after that and gave away a 2-run homer to Manny Ramirez.
The Phillies got the win, but the gestures and attitude of Hamels is disgusting. How many times have his teammates bailed him out of bad situations? And this is the thanks they get? No double play is ever a sure thing. Besides, if Hamels had not put two men on base, he would not have been in that situation to begin with. Utley was not pitching, as near as one can tell; Hamels was. Hamels should be ashamed for the lack of respect he showed his team.
Ok, let us not dwell…we did win the game :O) The most pleasant surprise of the night was Chan Ho Park, who in his first relief appearance since 9/16/09 after an injury, came back looking sharp as ever. He pitched a scoreless, hitless inning and had a lot of movement on his pitches. Welcome back Chan Ho!
Six relievers were used in all and everyone did their job, except Ryan Madson who had a 4 hit, 2 run 8th inning. Madson has not looked good this post-season at all and it is beginning to be a real concern. Luckily, he had a 4 run lead and Brad Lidge was able to close out the game in the 9th with the 2 run lead he was left with. Lidge seems to have his confidence back, which is good to see, but Madson appears to be going to opposite direction. He did get Ramirez out to end the 8th, but how reliable is Madson going to be from now forward?
And how about that bad umpiring…again. The Dodgers decided to pinch run for Jim Thome in the 6th inning, but Randy Wolf was not ready; he did not have his spikes on. The umpire actually let the Dodgers get away with a delay of several minutes while Wolf changed his shoes in the clubhouse! JA Happ stood on the mound pacing, waiting for the game to resume. Sorry ump – BAD call. You cannot let the other team’s pitcher stiffen up while you wait for someone to change shoes. If they are not ready to go, too bad for them. Game on.
Game 2 will kick off this afternoon at 4:07pm with former Dodger, Pedro Martinez facing former Phillie, Vincente Padilla. This should be another good one! Go Phillies!!!!
Photo by Jenn