I returned from my trip to the Galapagos Islands this weekend just in time to attend today’s Phillies – Reds game. But before we get to that, check out what my little friend the Phanatic was up to on our trip to his homeland. He visited 5 different islands, some beaches and even a distant relative, the Marine Iguana:
Yes, the Phanatic and I had a lovely vacation where we swam with sharks, rays, turtles and fish and wandered the land with giant tortoises. It was amazing!
I had to catch up on my Phillies news when I returned and it appears much has happened. Roy Halladay is having surgery (yikes!), the Phils signed hot-head Carlos Zambrano to a minor league deal (double-yikes!), Raul Valdes became the first regular bullpen guy to get sent down to the minors (more may be coming), Mike Adams has a bad back (oh my…), Tyler Cloyd started a game, Kyle Kendrick returned to earth in a loss yesterday after an amazing start to the season….and oh yeah, the offense still sucks. Did I miss anything?
All that drama aside, the Phillies did manage to pull out a win today, which based on the first 7 ½ innings, did not look likely. Jonathan Pettibone was very solid again, only allowing 2 runs, and the defense backed him up.
But once again the offense was asleep and the feeling of dread grew deeper when Carlos Ruiz was pulled from the game with a strained hamstring.
Finally, the Phillies scratched out a run in the 8th, thanks to Ben Revere legging out a base hit. Revere led the team with 3 hits today. Then in the 9th, it appeared as if the Phils were going down in flames, despite getting the first runner of the inning on base against flame-thrower Aroldis Chapman. Because as soon as Cliff Lee came in to pinch run for Delmon Young, he got picked off at first. Ugh.
But when Erik Kratz smacked a home run to tie the game, the tide turned quickly. Freddy Galvis was up next and hit a line-drive homer just over the left field wall for the walk-off win! It was the first time Chapman gave up more than one homer in a game…ever. Go figure.
So even after a 0-10 pounding on Saturday, the Phillies still walked away with the series win and, hopefully, some momentum going into Miami tomorrow. Game time is 7:10pm.
And here is the Photo Album from today’s win.
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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography
The Phillies dropped two out of three games against the Marlins this weekend, with the ugliest of the 3 games coming in a 5-1 loss today. Joe Blanton pitched 6 innings, giving up 5 runs, including two home runs, one of which came off the bat of the opposing pitcher. Blanton has now allowed 24 runs in his last 4 games.
For the Marlins, Carlos Zambrano had a good day, including a bunt base-hit and a home run. The Phillies offense did a great job helping him out with only 6 hits in the game and 8 runners left on base. 3 of those 6 hits belonged to Juan Pierre. Zambrano has certainly improved since leaving the Cubs, but the Phillies made him look like All-Star material.
Offensively, this game was so boring, a 20-something year old guy sitting next to me fell asleep in the 4th inning. I am not kidding. His friends were laughing about it and poking him but even that did not wake him. He finally woke when it started to rain.
So since I have nothing much nice to say today after a very disappointing loss, I have decided instead to hand out some awards. The winner of the “I Plastered Myself Against The Outfield Wall, But It Was A Home Run Anyway” award goes to Juan Pierre:
And Placido Polanco wins the award for the “Silliest Face Of The Day” on a play at third:
The “Oops, I Did It Again” award was a tie between Blanton (for 5 runs or more in his last 4 games) and Hector Luna:
The “At Least The Bullpen Didn’t Totally Suck Award” goes to the bullpen:
The “I Came All This Way And Did Not Even Get To See My Son Play” award goes to former Major Leaguer, John Mayberry Sr. and Mrs. Mayberry:
And finally, the “Nothing Wrong With A Little Man-Love” award goes to Jimmy Rollins and Greg Dobbs:
The Phillies begin a 4-game series with the Dodgers tomorrow and hopefully, Vance Worley will be off the DL and pitching.
By the way, my condolences to Jose Contreras who is done for the year with a complete tear of the flexor pronator tendon in his right elbow…again. At 40 years of age, it looks like this may be the end of his career :O( That had to be devastating news for him, poor guy. I wish him the best of luck.
And in other news, Chase Utley is finally headed to Clearwater to push forward with his recovery. No clue when he will be back, but do not hold your breath.
Instead, enjoy my Photo Album from the game today. Unlike the game, the album does not suck. ;o)
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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography
This team is fun to watch; you never know what is going to happen next. Notching their 10th win in a row after a 13 inning pitching knock-down, drag-out fight, the Phillies enter this afternoon’s game with a 6 ½ game lead in the NL East.
Joe Blanton was as good as you could ask for in a starting pitcher, going 7 innings and allowing only 1 run while striking out 5 batters. The problem was that the Cubs pitcher, Rich Harden, was just as good. Former teammates, the pair looked determined to duke it out on the diamond. The result ended in a draw and the bullpens continued the fight through 13 innings.
Ryan Madson, Brad Lidge, Chan Ho Park and Clay Condrey combined for 6 scoreless innings to give the Phillies a chance at winning the match.
Lidge contributed in a very unique way in the 9th inning when a little soccer action helped him out. With a runner on first and one out, Lidge needed a double play to end the inning. The next batter lined a ball up the middle and away from Lidge’s glove, so Lidge kicked the ball towards second and it landed right in the glove of Jimmy Rollins who turned two easily. Brad Lidge: Part man, part Pele.
But the big kick came off the bat of Jayson Werth; with 2 out in the lucky 13th inning, Werth blasted a ball over the left field wall to score 3 runs and win the game.
The Phillies will try to sweep the Cubs this afternoon with an early 1:05pm start. Jamie Moyer will take on the emotional, and usually entertaining, Carlos Zambrano. Talk about polar opposites…this should be another good one to watch!
In today’s 5-3 win over the Cubs, Jayson Werth accounted for 3 of the runs; he went 2 for 4 including a solo homer. It was his 3rd home run in 2 days. And Werth has slowly raised his batting average up to a solid .282, only 1 point behind Shane Victorino (.283) and 11 behind Chase Utley (.293). This guy is totally locked in right now, and the timing could not be better. The Phillies really needed this win today to split with the Cubs in their four game series and stay only 1 game behind the Mets in the tight NL East race.
Having Carlos Zambrano of the Cubs pulled at the last minute before game time certainly put an extra hop or two into the steps of the Phillies players. They came out scoring right away off the inexperienced lefty, Sean Marshall. In the first inning, they scored 3 runs, all with 2 outs on the board. Chase Utley walked; Ryan Howard singled to score Utley; Shane Victorino singled and then, the man of the hour, Jayson Werth, doubled to drive in the remaining two runs. Howard had a huge day as well, going 3 for 5 with 1 RBI. Utley and Victorino also ended the game with 2 hits each.
Jamie Moyer started the game and wound up going 5 1/3 innings, giving up 2 earned runs on 8 hits and 2 walks. Not his greatest, but still a good outing and enough to earn the win. The bullpen finally held onto a lead, surrendering only 1 run in the remaining 4 2/3 innings. I’ll bet they are all breathing a huge sigh of relief right now! Brad Lidge got save #33 and still remains perfect in save opportunities.
The Phillies are now on their way to Washington DC where they will begin a 3 game series with the Nationals tomorrow; game time is 3:05pm and Kyle Kendrick gets the ball. This is a great opportunity to gain some ground in the standings, playing against a last place team. However, the Nationals have always given the Phillies a rough time, so this will be tougher than it looks on paper. Keep your rally hats on! Go Phillies!
And for the football fans, I have also started a Miami Dolphins page, The Dolphin Pod! All Dol-Fans, and anyone else who wants to say hello is welcome!
Remember also to check out our homepage My Team Rivals and our Phillies, Flyers, Eagles, Billy Penn Curse, Reinstate Pete Rose, Phillies Mets Rivalry, Phillies Marlins Rivalry, and Phillies Braves Rivalry pages!