Although the day began with the Phillies placing Placido Polanco on the DL, it ended well. Polanco, battling back pain, should be back around July 20.
All of the recent injuries have given many young players big opportunities. Michael Martinez started at third again and John Mayberry Jr. started in center and had a huge day at the plate. In the 7-2 win over the Mets, Mayberry accounted for five of those runs with a single and a bases-clearing double.
Having struggled in his last trip to the majors earlier this year, it looks like Mayberry has finally made the adjustments he needed in order to get his swing straight. If Mayberry keeps up this pace, the Phillies may not to need any further for a powerful right-handed bat.
Vance Worley also had a nice day on the mound. He allowed only one run through 5.1 innings. The only issue was that Worley walked four batters and had a high pitch count early. He still has some work to do, but so far, Worley is fitting right in to this rotation.
When Worley was called back up today, Ryan Madson joined him as well, coming off the DL after dealing with a bruised hand. The two roster spots were cleared by Polanco’s DL trip and Scott Mathieson was sent down.
Madson pitched the seventh inning and it appears that he has not skipped a beat. His command was good and he had zip on his fastball. Michael Stutes, on the other hand, looked rusty after the All-Star break and he gave up a homer in the eighth.
One other item of note today was the performance of Raul Ibanez. His bat is suddenly on fire and as a result, he was named the National League Player of the Week. The week before the All-Star game, Ibanez hit .310 with three homers and 13 RBI. He hit another home run tonight and also singled. Congrats to RAUUUUUUL!
Game 2 with the Mets is Saturday afternoon at 4:10pm. Cole Hamels will pitch with Kyle Kendrick on Sunday. The top two aces, Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee, are getting a break after pitching almost two innings each in the All-Star game on Tuesday.
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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography