Fresh off their win yesterday over the Giants (behind another strong outing from Roy Oswalt) the Phillies looked to expand their small lead in the NL Wildcard by taking game two of their series against San Francisco.
The Giants had pitcher Matt Kane (9-9) on the mound and Joe Blanton got the nod for the Phils. Although he has been terrible in the first inning (and after the fifth or sixth inning) the Phillies had won Blanton’s last six home starts coming into tonight’s game.
The game started off like any other Blanton outing as he surrendered a lead off home-run to Andres Torres. Blanton then allowed the Giants rookie sensation, catcher Buster Posey, to reach base. The score remained 1-0 Giants until the bottom of the third inning when Chase Utley drove in Jimmy Rollins, tying the game at one.
In the fourth inning the Phillies opened up the flood gates, scoring four runs (including three on a Jimmy Rollins home-run).
Blanton pitched four straight scoreless innings leading into the sixth where he surrendered a solo home-run to former Phillie Pat “The Bat” Burrell. It was Burrell’s second home-run in as many nights. The Phillies bullpen took over and Chad Durbin, Ryan Madsen, and Jose Contreras combined to pitch two & two-thirds innings of no-hit baseball.
The Fightins added two more runs in the seventh and another in the eighth (on a towering pinch-hit home-run by Domonic Brown) to take a commanding 8-2 lead. They would win by the same score.
On the night the Phillies hit two doubles, three triples, two home-runs, and four singles.
They now have a two game lead over the Giants in the wildcard and go for the sweep tomorrow night when Cole Hamels takes the mound for the Philadelphia. The Washington Nationals are next up for the Phils as they come to Citizen’s Bank Park on Friday for a three game series (Roy Halladay pitches Friday night).
The Braves again won in the 9th inning today to maintain a two game lead over the Phillies in the NL East. Atlanta also made a move today trading for the Cubs first-baseman Derrick Lee. They plan to use Lee at first and move Troy Glaus to third-base.