Phillies pitchers Kyle Kendrick and Roy Halladay each started one game of a double header against the Marlins today. So while the stats show that Game 2 should have been a win and game one was a toss-up, that is not exactly what happened.
The Marlins got off to a good start in Game 1 with a run against Kendrick, same as they did on Tuesday night. But also the same as Tuesday night’s 9-1 win, the Phillies came charging back quick, scoring two runs in the first two innings.
Wilson Valdez wound up being the game hero, going 3-for-4 with a bases loaded triple in the third. Jimmy Rollins had two hits, including a 3-run homer.
But the real surprise was Kendrick, who pitched seven innings without allowing another run after the first inning. The Phillies went on to win Game 1 by a score of 8-1.
But in Game 2, the earth must have stopped spinning on its axis’ because as Kendrick did his best Halladay impersonation, Halladay suddenly turned in a Kendrick-like performance. This is an alternate reality for Phillies fans who watched confused as Halladay got hit around by the Fish.
Someone should write a guide book for these situations as I was at a loss of how to cope with it. Oh wait, someone did write a manual…
So after allowing two runs in the first inning, it looked like Halladay might reel in the Fish after that. But in the fourth inning, the Fish stopped taking the bait. Former Phillies, Greg Dobbs smacked a double to get things started and two more hits later, the Phillies were down by a score of 4-1.
Kendrick outpitched Halladay today? What craziness is this? And four runs for Halladay is like a freak accident; it simply should never happen. This was only the third time all year that Halladay gave up more than three runs in a game.
For the Marlins, pitcher Anibal Sanchez was on point. He allowed only two runs over seven innings, forcing the Phillies to try for a comeback in the ninth inning.
With two outs in the ninth and two men on base, Shane Victorino came through with a two-run single to ties up the game at 4-4. He then stole second and landed on third after a bad throw. But Chase Utley was not able to score Victorino as he flew out to left and sent the game into extra innings.
But in the 10th, Ryan Howard got hit by a pitch and Domonic Brown walked. Carlos Ruiz then reversed the Phillies fortunes and smacked a walk-off single that scored Howard for a 5-4 win!
The Phillies have taken 3 straight from the Fish! The earth has returned to its normal rotation and the universe is as it should be. Game 4 is tomorrow at 1:05pm.
Kendrick Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography
Last night the Phillies faced the Marlins in what was to be first of four games in 48 hours with the Fish. As rain poured onto the field, delaying the start of the game, the hours dwindled down. But after the one hour and 20 minute delay, the game finally began.
And although Cole Hamels allowed on run in the first inning, the offense got that run and more right back for him in the bottom half of the inning. Ryan Howard smashed a two-run homer, which was to be the first of many on the night.
Hamels took the 2-1 lead and ran with it. Over 7+ innings, Hamels filleted the Fish with six strikeouts, allowing only three hits and the one run. He left the game early in the seventh when his back tightened up, but all reports say he will be fine to make his next start. David Herndon pitched the final two innings without allowing a run.
As for the home runs, they just kept on coming. Howard, Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins all hit 2-run homers in the game. Not to be left behind in the home run barrage, rookie Domonic Brown smashed TWO solo shots, one of which went far into the second deck in right field.
Just to recap, that is five home runs for a total of eight of the Phillies nine runs in the game.’
This break-out game was amazing for a number of reasons. First, the top four in the batting order, including Shane Victorino who had three hits in the game, are all clicking for the first time this season. Second, the rookie Brown looks like a legit big leaguer now. Also, nine runs in a game is what this team is capable of and they are finally living up to their true potential.
I actually felt sorry for Marlins pitcher Chris Volstad by the fifth inning. This poor guy was getting the crap beat out of him and his manager, probably trying to save the pen for the doubleheader today, just left him out there to dry. Volstad was finally pulled mid-way through the sixth inning, but this spanking is going to hurt for a while.
So the big doubleheader is set to kick off at 1:05pm with Kyle Kendrick on the mound. The second game starts at 7:05pm and Roy Halladay will pitch against Marlins ace Anibal Sanchez. Should be a great day for baseball!
Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography
The Phillies played back-to-back games in Miami yesterday against the 2nd place Marlins and split the series. Here is a recap:
Joe Blanton pitched 7 scoreless innings while the Phillies offense played some small ball and squeaked out 4 runs off the Marlins ace, Josh Johnson. They blew the game wide open though with a 5-run 8th inning. Every starting position player had at least one hit and 5 different players collected RBI’s.
Miguel Cairo got a rare start at 3rd base while Pedro Feliz took a break; Cairo went 2 for 5 with an RBI and a run scored. Ryan Howard led the team in RBI’s with 3, none of which came off home runs. He got it done with base hits, sacrifices and some really good base running. Out of 9 runs scored in the 9-3 win, only 1 came off a homer; Raul Ibanez hit a solo shot in the 8th.
The pen ran into trouble in the bottom of the 8th with rookie Sergio Escalona allowing 3 runs on 2 hits. Tyler Walker allowed a hit as well, but eventually got the final 2 outs of the inning. Clay Condrey pitched a hitless 9th inning; it is great to see Condrey back after a long stint on the DL!
The Phillies looked a bit sleepy in game two.
In fact, the bats took a little nap for 9 innings and they lost the game 0-3. The only 2 hits in the game came from Chase Utley who hit a single and a double. I guess they were exhausted after a 9-run game earlier? Because the Marlins pitcher, Anibal Sanchez is certainly not their best; his 2-7 record and ERA of 4.50 going into the game should be evidence enough.
Jamie Moyer did his job and pitched 7 innings, allowing 3 runs on 9 hits and 1 walk, which is basically what the Phillies expected from him. But the lack of offense did them in.
So, having split the doubleheader, the Phillies will need to concentrate on winning the final game of the series tonight. Cole Hamels gets the ball at 7:10pm.
The magic number is now 5!
Cairo photo by Jenn