Phillies Bats Stay Cool As Temperatures Rise, Dodgers Win 6-2

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After returning home from a 4-5 road trip on which they lost series to the Nationals and Pirates, the Phillies won the first game of their series against the Los Angeles Dodgers by a score of 3-1 on Monday night. Looking to make it three straight wins for the Fightins, Roy Oswalt took the mound for the Phillies on Tuesday night to face off against Rubby De La Rosa of the Dodgers.

It was a sloppy game from start to finish for the Phillies. In the bottom half of the first, they made their first out at third, a baseball no-no.

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The Dodgers scored the first run of the game but the Phillies quickly knotted the score at 1-1. Philadelphia had the bases loaded with no outs but were only able to muster a single run when De La Rosa walked Placido Polanco with two outs and the bases still jammed. Earlier in the inning, Raul Ibanez was thrown out at home plate.

De La Rosa led off the third inning and Oswalt walked him on just five pitches. Walking the lead-off batter usually comes back to haunt a pitcher, walking the opposing pitcher to start off an inning, that’s just bad baseball. After singles by Dee Gordon (son of former Phillies pitcher Tom Gordon) and Casey Blake, De La Rosa scored to make it 2-1 Dodgers. After an error by Oswalt later in the inning (he threw to first base with no one covering, allowing Gordon to score) and an RBI single by Andre Ethier, L.A. was up 4-1.

The scoring ceased for both teams until the bottom half of the 7th when Chase Utley hit a triple that scored Shane Victorino from first. Ryan Howard stepped to the plate with a chance to tie the game with one swing but alas, he was unable to connect on a long ball or even score Utley from third.

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Michael Stutes came on to pitch the 8th inning for Philadelphia after J.C. Romero pitched a scoreless 7th in relief of Oswalt. Down 4-2, and with the Phil’s bats ice cold over the last several weeks, it was imperative to keep the Dodgers from scoring again. Unfortunately, with Andre Ethier already on first base, Matt Kemp hit a deep HR off of Stutes to extend L.A.’s lead to 6-2.

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Neither team would score again. With the loss, Oswalt’s record drops below .500 to 3-4. Jimmy Rollins, who had missed a few games after fouling a ball off of his knee over the weekend, pitch hit for the Phillies in the bottom half of the 9th.

The rubber match comes tonight when Cole Hamels (7-2) takes the ball for the Phillies. Hamels has arguably been the most consistent starter for Philadelphia this season. He will be opposed by Dodgers pitcher Hiroki Kuroda (5-6). With temps in Philadelphia today soaring into the high 90’s, it should be a hot one at Citizen’s Bank Park tonight. Hopefully some of the heat on the field will soak into the home team’s bats. Next up for the Phillies is a four game home series against the Chicago Cubs, followed by a four game series (including a double header on Wednesday, June 15th) against the Florida Marlins.

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