After being suspended for three games, Shane Victorino was still able to play tonight against the Dodgers as he appealed the ruling. And that turned out to be a very good thing for the Phillies.
Going 3-for-5 in the game, Victorino scored three times and hit a key home run in the 8th inning to give the Phillies a 2-run lead late in the game.
The energy Victorino brought to the game was crucial on a night where both starter Roy Halladay and the Phillies bullpen encountered some issues. While Halladay allowed only one run, he struggled to get through 6 1/3 innings and had a lot of baserunners.
The bullpen took over with a 4-1 lead that quickly dwindled down to just a 4-3 lead by the end of the eighth inning. Michael Stutes allowed two runs and also committed a throwing error before Brad Lidge was brought in to take over. Lidge was shaky as well, walking one batter and giving up a hit. But he redeemed himself by fielding a tough bunt and making a glove toss to first to end the inning.
In that same inning, the Dodgers were called for interference as Juan Rivera ran Chase Utley over who was trying to field a ground ball. They may have had a double play, but it did not matter once Lidge made the final out.
After the Victorino homer, the Phillies were leading by a score of 5-3 in the ninth. Ryan Madson was brought in for the save, but Madson had not pitched since 8/1 as he left the team to see the birth of his fourth child. Madson was a bit rusty, but he nailed the save.
Game two with the Dodgers is another late one; 10:10pm Tuesday night with Cliff Lee on the mound.
FYI – Placido Polanco had an MRI today and was diagnosed with a mild sports hernia. He will receive and injection, but may still require surgery. I will have more on that as the news comes.
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Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography