Before the final game of the Nationals series today, umpire and Philly native Jerry Crawford was honored for his 33 years of MLB service. Today was to be his last Phillies game as he will retire at the end of the year. Crawford was given a standing ovation and a present from the Phanatic; a baby Phanatic doll:
Once the game began, Roy Oswalt was in control. Though he had a rather high pitch count and led off several innings with runners, Oswalt got the job done when he needed to. He was also very effective at the plate with two hits and in his third at-bat, almost hit a home run. The ball went all the way to the warning track in deep center before a Nat tracked it down. A little bit to the left and it would have gone out.
Oswalt gave up 5 hits and a walk in 7 innings without allowing a run. His day was cut short when the skies opened up and dumped buckets of rain onto the field. The 1 hour, 44 minute delay sent many fans home early.
But to that point, the Phillies offense started to hit again. Jimmy Rollins double to lead off the game and a sac fly from Placido Polanco scored him. Later in the 3rd, Oswalt scored after one of his hits and a Polanco single. The 6th inning was interesting as well. With 2 men on and 2 outs, the Nats decided to intentionally walk Carlos Ruiz to get to Wilson Valdez. With the bases then loaded, Valdez made them pay with a 2-run single.
There were a lot of good play both on offense and defense:
And then there were some not so great plays, like a Ruiz throwing error to second. And some weird plays too; if you look at the top row of photos below, you will see Ryan Zimmerman checking out Valdez’s leg; Nats shortstop Ian Desmond, who caught a ground ball which got stuck in the netting of his glove, allowing another hit from Oswalt; and finally, Adam Kennedy puts his hand in a place that Rollins probably did not appreciate:
With a 4-0 lead coming out of the rain delay, Rollins got another hit and Raul Ibanez cranked a 2-run homer to give the Phils a 6-0 win and a 2 game to 1 win in the series. Ibanez, Polanco and Valdez each had 2-RBI on the day. Valdez played in place of Chase Utley who was given a day off to rest.
And now the real fun begins; the Astros are coming to town for a 4-games series. It will be like the Phillies vs. all the guys the Phillies no longer wanted. Both Brett Myers and JA Happ will pitch in the series, plus we will see more old teammates like Michael Bourn, Nelson Figueroa and Jason Michaels. Myers will pitch tomorrow against Joe Blanton at 7:05pm.
Here is the full Photo Album from the game. If it is not working, try again later. TypePad is having issues with photo albums right now.
Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography
Roy Oswalt’s debut tonight in a Phillies uniform was a bit of a buzz kill. The last place Nationals smacked him around, scoring 5 runs in the first 5 innings.
By the end of 6, Oswalt had given up 7 hits, 2 walks and hit 2 batters which accounted for 4 earned runs and 1 unearned.
On the other side, Nats pitcher Craig Stammen came into tonight’s game with a 5.50 ERA and only 2 wins in 19 starts. When he was done with the Phillies, Stammen looked like a Cy Young winner. The stuttering Phils offense managed only 5 hits; 2 of those were from Raul Ibanez and another two, including a solo homer, were from Jayson Werth. Rookie Domonic Brown had the 5th hit for the team in only his 2nd start in the big leagues.
The defense was a bit shaky as well. Carlos Ruiz did something I personally have never seen before. In the 3rd inning with 2 men on base, Adam Kennedy squared to bunt and Greg Dobbs at third base charged to field the bunt, as he was supposed to. Ruiz got the ball instead; he then had a brain cramp and threw the bunted ball to third base even though NO ONE was there to catch it. Yes, Ruiz threw the ball to nobody. And then a run scored. Wow.
Things continued to go downhill after Oswalt left the game. Chad Durbin pitched the 7th and gave up 3 runs on 3 hits and 2 walks. Down 8 to 1, the Phillies offense continued to do nothing. Brown got one more hit in the 9th inning, giving the Phillies 6 hits total from 3 players. And that was all the offense. Phillies lose, 8-1.
As for Oswalt, I suppose everyone is entitled to a bad day. It was just one start. We’ll see how it goes next time. By the way, in case anyone is interested, JA Happ made his first start for the Astros tonight; he gave up some walks, but only 2 hits and NO runs in 6 innings.
Joe Blanton will pitch in DC tomorrow; game time is 7:05pm.
Photo by http://www.motifake.com/