Phillies Escape the Bay with a Win on Wacky Afternoon

Posted by Jonathan Fogg, Wed, April 28, 2010 08:04 PM | Comments: 76
2010 Game Recaps, Posts

The Phillies’ 7-6, 11-inning win over the Giants today is a perfect example of why you can’t ever write off the Phillies – and why you can’t draw any solid conclusions from early-season results.

What do you learn from a game like this? Very little that you didn’t know already. The Phillies’ bullpen is still riddled with questions, and Ryan Madson still can’t consistently close out games. The offense has yet to shake its recent hiccups (though maybe the adrenaline-igniting ninth-inning rally against Giants ace Tim Lincecum and closer Brian Wilson will be the catalyst).

In the end, it’s just too early in the season to etch anything in stone based on a few April series. If there is one thing clear, it’s that the Phillies need to see if Brad Lidge can reassume the closer role, because Madson has proved time and again that he can’t handle it.

Though it ended up as a struggle of endurance, the game began as a matchup of Lincecum and Cole Hamels. Using primarily two pitches – a four-seam fastball and a split-fingered fastball – Lincecum buzzed through the Phillies’ lineup without much difficulty, just as teammates Jonathan Sanchez and Todd Wellemeyer had done the previous two days.

Even though Lincecum allowed a fifth-inning opposite-field home run to Ryan Howard, for 8 1/3 innings he avoided putting multiple runners on base – something his counterpart, Cole Hamels, couldn’t do. Hamels, who to his credit had 10 strikeouts and at times showed faint signs of being a dominant pitcher, loaded the bases in the sixth inning with score tied at 1. Then he did something dominant pitchers don’t do: He walked in the go-ahead run. After Phils manager Charlie Manuel left a clearly struggling Hamels out on the mound, Edgar Renteria followed with a two-run single.

The Phillies were quiet until the ninth, when Giants manager Bruce Bochy removed Lincecum after a one-out walk to Shane Victorino. After Chase Utley singled and Ryan Howard walked, Jayson Werth fouled off several pitches before dropping a bloop millimeters inside the right-field line, clearing the bases and tying the score. A fan dressed in Phillies garb nearly committed a monstrous mental error by reaching out to grab the ball (which would have turned the hit into a two-run ground-rule double), but luckily for the Phillies – and for him – the ball eluded his grasp.

In the 10th, the Phils took the lead when backup catcher Brian Schneider motored home on a wild pitch, but Madson allowed a leadoff double and promptly blew the save, No. 2 of the season.

But the Phils, as they have done so many times under Manuel, punched right back. Wilson Valdez ripped a ball into the left-field corner that barely cleared the glove of Eugenio Velez, scoring Raul Ibanez. Velez had an easier play seconds later on a fly ball by Victorino, but the ball hit the heel of Velez’s glove and bounded away as Valdez raced home for a 7-5 lead.

On a wild afternoon, the Phils wouldn’t walk away with a win that easily. The clouds opened, and showers started to fall at AT&T Park. Then Nelson Figueroa took the mound, and hits – and more weird bounces – began to drop as well. Only Schneider’s whirling catch-and-tag after an errant throw by Howard saved Figueroa from the Phillies’ second blown save of the afternoon – and helped Figueroa secure his first career save.

If one certainty emerged from the wild afternoon by the bay, it was this: Heading home for a challenging 10-game stretch against the Mets, Cardinals and Braves, the Phillies needed a win – any kind of win – and they got it.

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About Jonathan Fogg

Jonathan Fogg has written 23 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 Manny


    I was pissed when Werth’s fly out wasn’t a homerun… but lady luck was on his side with a full count, 2 outs, bottom of the ninth!

    I couldn’t believe they took Lincecum out with only 2 outs left, and said to myself “Charlie would never do this.” And then we tied it.

    Madson was upsetting, but it just added to the drama of this game. And that play at home was sweet to keep the tying run from scoring.

    Hamels looked sharp tonight, 10 Ks in 6 innings is dominating… despite those 4ER. Those who were watching the game from the start know that he was on tonight. Good game by Howard, too.

  • Posts: 0 Whitey

    Had ‘em all the way, Harry.

  • Posts: 0 ray

    When you play sucky, crappy, horrible and any other word you want to use on a 9 game road trip through atl-arizona-sf and still go 4-5 then you’re a damn good team.
    All the while you have injuries where guys will be coming back soon, the mets are playing out of their minds on an 8 game win streak and only lead the phils for 1st place by a half a game. NO WORRIES

  • Posts: 0 Mike Schmidt

    I’m not so sure Charlie wouldn’t have taken Lincecum out in that situation. Think about it. He walks Victorino with one out. The Giants have a 3 run lead. Lincecum has 105 pitches. Bochy felt as though ….and rightfully so….that his bullpen could nail down the final two outs. I’m not so sure that was a bad managerial decision.

  • Posts: 0 Manny

    105 pitches… that’s very good for a starter pitching in the ninth! With only 2 outs to go, Charlie would definitely let the guy get the CG… no questions asked.

  • Posts: 0 Scott in D.C.

    I keep saying it, but I think it’s true: Hamels really wasn’t that bad. …

  • Posts: 0 ray

    Answer this question: Would charlie had taken out Halladay in that same situation? That would be a resounding NO.
    Had another guy got on a base after that then I would say more than likely

  • Posts: 0 pam

    will they replay this game tonght like they usually do on csn?

  • Posts: 0 Scott in D.C.

    Every time I see Lincecum pump his fist and say “F*ck yeah!”, it drives me nuts. Even more than the Ks.

  • Posts: 0 philsgirl

    Can I look yet? Oh, it’s over? And two really good things – we won, and Lincecum doesn’t get a win!

    I do believe my head turned all the way around at some point. I wish it gave me more confidence in the bullpen (so don’t try that at home as a strategy). Sad thing is, I think somebody said they were waiting for Lidge to come back, and I actually agree, not that I’m sure it’ll change much. Madson isn’t a closer, but he’ll keep getting the ball in closing situations because Charlie does *not* believe doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. And duly noted strikeouts notwithstanding, 4 ER in 6 innings doesn’t give me a great deal of confidence in our #2 starter, sorry.

    Hope this road trip and Mets win streak are freaks of that force of nature we call luck. Way to stop hearts on the way to a win tonight, guys.

  • Posts: 0 Dave Spurmeeter

    Mets will kick some philly ass tonight.

  • Posts: 0 Ed R.

    Dave…they are both off until Friday. Now go away and come back when you have a clue.

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Charlie DID take Halladay out in the 9th in that Marlins game a few weeks ago. And they had an 8-2 lead and I think Halladay’s pitch count was just over 100 pitches.

    It’s not wrong to think that your bullpen can protect a 3 or a 6 run lead.

    With a lead like that it makes sense to give your ace a rest….especially this early in the season. It’s a long season and you don’t want to burn these guys out prematurely.

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Oh, and I am STILL in shock over that play by Schneider.

    Werth gets the Ashburn (rightfully so)…..but Schneider saved the game.

  • Posts: 0 Repeat!

    Ash goes to the Giants Manager… Thanks again dude! The JackAzz goes to Davey S…. A Mets fan talking smack after 20 or so games in a 162 game season?? Say it ain’t so…. 1986….

  • Posts: 0 Greg

    So how about them 1962 Mets, Dave S? I heard they’re pretty damn good.


    Phenomenal win by the Phils. Great game :D

  • Posts: 0 riccaboni

    In my opinion, Hamels pitched well. He had a hiccup, but he was striking people out. I think the problem was he was run down with fatigue at the end of his game tonight and couldn’t hit his spots as effective. But I’ll take 10 Ks any day of the week.

    Glad to have the win, looking forward to Friday.

  • Posts: 0 Chuck


    Lincecum had thrown 105 pitches. He walked Victorino. Why SHOULDN’T the manager have pulled him and trusted his bullpen with a 3 run lead and 1 out?

    The Phils benefited from this decision….so I’m not complaining about it. But you don’t want to burn your ace out with 5 long months to go.

  • Posts: 0 jt

    they really need to do all they can to keep werth…try and trade ibanez or other players to cut salary anything to keep him on the team…

  • Posts: 0 Repeat!

    I hear ya my friend, but that was the Weed-Mizter’s game today to w/l. 105 pitches and he was crusing. Factor in the windy conditions and his stuff today was no-hitter-esh. Seriously… one on, one out against a struggling team that couldn’t lay-off of his dirt pitches all day= Game. Set. Match. You could just see the looks on the Phils faces.. like really? you’re taking him out. I bet you he’s getting roasted tonite by Giants fans.

  • Posts: 0 Repeat!

    yes jt they gotta keep Werth… but judging by phils president’se response to a related question, it seems extremly doubtful…. what a shame….. it’ll hurt if we can’t keep him

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Their closer, Wilson, is no slouch and was ready in the bullpen. He blew the save. Plain and simple. It happens as we Phils fans know too well. But it just as easily could have been a different outcome.

    The Phillies no doubt were relieved. It’s like Mitch Williams just said on MLB Network…..that you could bring in Cy Young and it would have been welcomed….because it would be a change from what they were seeing with Lincecum.

    Phils caught a break with this game. Now they need to use it as a springboard to get back on track. Back home. Lidge returning. Mets series. Momentum COULD be shifting.

    Oh, and Ruben…..SIGN JAYSON WERTH…..NOW!!!!!

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    Great game – there was some hollerin going on for sure at Keith’s house.

    Jason played an odd game. Struck out 3 times, long fly out and a game winning double that I guess he thought was foul when he hit it. His defense was spotty at best. Did you notice that when Ryan hit his double he kicked in the afterburners tonight to get to second? I’m sure Cholly had a little chat with him…

    How about that grab by Vic? And, has anyone received an update on when Jimmy is coming back?

    We also thought that Cole was on tonight in a big way. His velocity up to 93 – and some of the calls were questionable by the Ump.
    What a game… the ball moved great for Hamels, Durbin and Nelson as well as the losing pitcher, Romo – his ball was jumping but he hung a few that the Phils jumped on oh, and thanks Velez!

  • Posts: 0 Morris Buttermaker

    I just watched the replay. Absolutely insane game. In my new attempted tradition of being succint:

    It’s a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll.

  • Posts: 0 Alex

    Credit where credit is due:

    Baez and Contreras, for keeping it a game.

    David Herndon, who, up against many many doubters, succeeded for the first time in a high-pressure situation.

    Brian Schneider, for his game-saving tag.

    And Ben Francisco, for his overlooked clutch at bat off the bench.

  • Posts: 0 jt

    san francisco it seems always gives the phils trouble whenever they play there kinda like pnc park in pittsburgh hopefully thats our only series they there…

  • Posts: 0 Nunzio Scholeri

    I saw a lot that I liked about Hamels tonight. His velocity was good, his pitches were down, his changeup was killer, he was throwing anything he felt like at any count, and he was even throwing his curveball for strikes sometimes. 10 Ks don’t just happen by accident.

    It was also really remarkable the way he just was not getting ANY borderline calls. There was a pitch early in the game where Ruiz crouched there holding the ball for a good 10 seconds because he (and everyone else there) couldn’t believe the ump hadn’t called it a strike. This contributed to his high pitch count through the first few innings, which in turn contributed to his fatigue by the 6th inning.

    Still, Hamels did a good job of staying composed through those questionable calls and through some early trouble spots – he kept attacking hitters, and I like that. It wasn’t a stellar start, but it showed clearly that this is a man who is moving in the right direction and working hard.

  • Posts: 0 Lewisauce

    Anybody else think Hamels gets squeezed more than most pitchers by the umps? (And I don’t just mean Donut Joe West.)

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    I didn’t see the game early on (saw the 9th, 10th and 11th!!) so I can’t say for sure whether Hamels was being squeezed. But judging from the umpires in this series and just the umpiring this season in general…..that wouldn’t shock me at all.

    No wonder we have these long games.

    But Nunzio Scholeri hits it when he comments that “10 Ks don’t just happen by accident.”

    So Hamels did a nice job of reboun

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Sorry….computer issues this morning… To continue…

    So Hamels did a nice job of rebounding from his last start. Think about it….he gave up 4 runs…..but it could have been a whole lot worse! So you have to give Cole credit for keeping his team in the game. 4-1 in a game where Tim Lincecum is dominating doesn’t easily translate into “keeping the team in the game.” But that’s what it was.

    And kudos to the the bullpen guys right after Hamels….and before Madson. Superb job!!

    This is one of those wins that has the chance to be momentum-changing. The Phils needed it bad. ANY kind of win. But the way they pulled this off right before a long plane ride home has the potential to pull this team together in a way that could help to define the early part of the season.

    They have a tough homestand coming up. Lidge is back as of tomorrow which is huge. And Blanton next week?? With Romero already back and I would guess Happ and J-Roll fairly soon ……things will hopefully begin to smooth out and roll.

  • Posts: 0 Blaise

    AND THE METS FANS ARE BACK. After being nonexistent through the 2009 season, the Mets fans are finally back, infiltrating the Phillie Blogs. Welcome back!

  • Posts: 0 bfo_33

    Baseball is better when the Mets are competitive. In a masochistic sort of way, I’ve missed the Mets trolls the past year (where is Grumpy Miner?).
    While it wasn’t a great road trip, all things considered, it wasn’t bad either. We probably should have taken 6 games, but it just as easily could have been 2-7. It’s going to be a nice warm weekend, expect the bats to come back. Hammels is having some bad luck, but is pitching decent. Lidge sounds like he has confidence and health, he’ll help settle the whole pen, send Madson back to set-up guy, where he thrives. Definitely looking forward to the weekend series (hate west coast swings, don’t catch much of the games).

  • Posts: 0 Cliff Lee

    They should have traded Cole and kept me. Everyone knows you can dominate with 2 studs at the top of your rotation (see the 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks). I really wanted to stay…Amaro is a liar.

  • Posts: 0 mikemike

    I wonder if the Phillies can move Hamels and use the money to keep Werth, and hope one of the kids at reading can take hamels place. next year rotation would be Halladay, Blanton, Happ, Kendrick, ???? not great but the question is Hamels or Werth who do you keep.Hamels makes 11 million and Jamie and is 8 million are gone so there is the money for Werth do you do it????

  • Posts: 0 mikemike

    hey bfo do you think we can any met trolls on here this weekend?????

  • Posts: 0 keng

    future phillies rotation and bullpen this year:
    rotation: halliday / hamels / blanton / contraras / figueroa
    bullpen: lidge / madson / bastardo / romero / baez / durbin / happ or moyer or kendrick (with idea that 1 or 2 of these will be dropped bc wont get it together)

  • Posts: 0 Jeff of Nova

    Keng I have to disagree majorly

    Contreras will not be in the rotation, Figuero is a nice short term deal but, Rotations will be Halladay, Hamels, Blanton, Happ, (Moyer,Kendrick, Figueroa, most likely Moyer.

    Happ is injured not having problems getting “it” together, he was winning games while hurt imagine when he is better.

    Moyer actually has been decent for a 5th starter, overpaid but a 5th starter.

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Figueroa can spot start occasionally….but he’s a better option out of the pen. He’s been a pleasant surprise.

    Contreras has been nasty. If Lidge falters in the closer role what do you guys think about his ability to close??

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    It’s a term that seems to go hand in hand with something like a pitcher falling apart when he screws up or his field mates make a mistake. Next thing you know there is a home run, not just a shot over the fence, a cannon shot, maybe 2 in a row.. you’ve seen it before and recently.

    I’ve seen plenty of games where you would expect or hope that the tide would change. The team is so pumped (at least we are) as they come from behind and somehow pull out a victory from the jaws of defeat – I just don’t buy it any more. You would expect perhaps the emotion would carry the team (of course the talent would shine) and the momentum would be like the Apollo boosters kicking in on the old Titan rockets (yes, I am that old) but, time after time the hopes fizzle at least for the first game or two.

    One game at a time, we definitely have the talent and every once in a while, the emotion will come through just don’t count on ‘momentum’.

  • Posts: 0 CarlosB

    I’m glad you retards are getting fired up about “Dave S.” Please go re-read his last name (outloud, if you need to).

  • Posts: 0 Greg

    If anyone on here knows that fan that almost grabbed Werth’s double, kindly punch him in his face for the good of Phils’ and baseball kind. Hopefully that will teach all involved not to be a jerk and disrupt a game for a stupid ball.

  • Posts: 0 George

    Contreras probably has the stuff to close. I doubt, though, that he could close in 3-4 straight games. He’s no spring chicken.

    I’m not worried much about Blanton, but I do have concerns about Happ. This is not the first time he’s had a forearm problem, and such problems can lead to surgery. Maybe not this year, but the next. I don’t look for him to return soon, because management isn’t going to take any chances with him.

    Hamels seems to be on the right track now. He’ll have a problem here and there, but he pitched pretty well last night, using more pitches effectively. He faced one or two batters too many, though. He was worn out when he gave up the three runs.

  • Posts: 0 Chuck


    The timing of the victory…..with the team struggling, the end of a LONG road trip to the West Coast….and the WAY they won….

    That COULD have an impact in the makeup and character of this team early in the season.

    Maybe my choice of words, “momentum-changing” is the wrong choice…

    But I think you know what I meant.


    I agree that rushing Happ back isn’t in anyone’s best interest. The rotation should be fine with Heavy B coming back and some combo of Moyer, Kendrick and Fig…at least for now….. That’s why the suggstion from someone above that the Phils should trade Hamels has absolutely no credibilty whatsoever.

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    I with ya Chuck –

    What I cant Figuer out is why we did not see Romero last night but in stead Nelson came out. So, KK will now take Happs spot in the rotation until he’s ready, JB should be back by Friday – am I right guys? The only thing I have not heard is about Jimmy – I cant find anything on when he might return.

    And of course Brad Lidge is ready to come back – who will be sent down? Baez or Herndon?

  • Posts: 0 Adam

    Hamels’ line was not indicative of his pitching performance. He went pitch for pitch with Lincecum all the while getting absolutely squeezed by the umpire. The umpires in this series had some of the smallest strike zones I have ever seen. Hamels was visibly upset when he literally was not getting even a millimeter on the outside corner. He stuck with fastballs and changeups today and sprinkled in some curves and change-ups.

    Further, Hamels continues to be one of the most unlucky pitchers I have ever seen. I have never seen a guy give up more freak/bloop hits in my life. The single that Renteria had was a tremendous pitch that in any other situation would have been an easy out. Renteria continues to kill the Phillies.

    Also, after an entire road trip of things going wrong for the Phillies, the baseball gods gave the Phillies a break with Werth’s ball in the ninth. I got to agree with one of the earlier comments that when you are missing 5 core players and did so many thing wrong, did not hit at all and still can go 4-5 on a brutal road trip you a pretty great team.

    You have to give the Phillies credit thus far. Being 12-9 while playing only 6 games at home and missing two starters, their closer and lead-off man is fairly impressive.

  • Posts: 0 The Original Chuck P

    De ja vu… this team has done this so many times. When things aren’t going their way, they turn in a performance like they had yesterday. It wasn’t a pretty win… it was actually a game that they had no business winning… but it’s a win and this team turns ugly wins into win streaks. I don’t have a whole lot to back up this statement but they almost always seem to snap losing streaks with ugly wins… their first win last year was a come from behind (trailing 10-3 to the Bravos on Ring Day, they scored 9 runs in the final frames… had scored 1 total run in the first two games of the season). There was another early season come from behind against the Fish where they scored 7 runs in the 9th inning after totaling 3 hits the rest of the game (they had lost 5 of their previous 7 games up to that point). They understand the importance of fighting until the end and not letting losing streaks get too lengthy.

    I’m one of the posters that made the comment about being excited to get back Brad Lidge. I’m not saying that he’s going to be “Lights Out” but his addition gives us a guy that is comfortable working out of the 9th and allows us to put the rest of the guys back into their normal roles. If he can regain some of that 2008 magic, this team will feed off of that.

    I didn’t get a chance to watch the entire game… I didn’t see the wheels fall off. I don’t know what went into that but what I did see was a very encouraring performance from Cole Hamels early on. He was working both sides of the plate, hitting his spots and the fastball had some bite. I’m not sure how he got into trouble but early on he looked as good as I’ve seen him in a while. I would love for someone to tell me what they think happened between the 4th and 6th innings (what changed… his approach? His velocity? His command? Luck?).

    Upcoming probables:


    This is going to be a tough series… I think that the most important game of this series is the second one. Pelfrey is on a roll; they need to rattle his confidence a little bit.

    We can beat Niese… he’s a lefty but he doesn’t dominate left-handed batters. We shouldn’t have a problem collecting hits…

  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Yeah…they had no business winning yesterday, like you said.

    But they also had no business LOSING the first game of the Braves series when Madson melted down.

    So, I guess it all balances out.

    “This team turns ugly wins into win streaks.” That’s exactly what I was trying to say about yesterday’s game being “momentum-changing” It has the potential to be HUGE.

    I didn’t see anything on TV til the 9th…and only listened on the radio for the first 3 innings….so I can’t really answer your question about what happened between the 4th and 6th. He was squeezed by the ump (what a shocker) and I think some of his hits had eyes?? My guess is that he was gassed from a high pitch count due to being squeezed.???

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    There is always a lot of agreement after a win..
    * Adam * you are absolutely correct. 4-5 on a road trip, missing key players is not that bad at all.
    * Original Chuck P * – in the 5th, Schierholtz, someone I never heard of before last night (he went 5-5) started off the inning with a single. Lincecum hit a sacrifice bunt that was too hard and Ryan Howard scooped it up quickly. He did have time to go to second but instead took the easy out at first. Torres doubles, Schierholtz scores. I think if Howard had gone to second, there was enough time to turn the double play but, it did not happen that way. Regardless, Renteria singled but Cole got the Panda to pop up and then struck out Aubrey Huff to end the inning.
    In the 6th, it was not a melt down – started out OK (another K) then a soft liner single, a ball hit over Shanes head that it seemed he might have a chance to get but pulled up and took the ball off the bounce from the bottom of the wall – a double which put men on 2nd and 3rd, 1 out. Still, nothing hit really hard, no apparent melting. An IBB to load the bases for Lincecum (he walked that schmuck Schierholtz – this guy was on base 6 times yesterday), struck out Lincecum and then walked Torres the leadoff batter which plated a run. Cole was around the plate, consistently he was not getting the calls. Renteria hit a single to Werth who did not have a good day to that point and the 2 more runs scored. Werth was shaky in the field and had already struck out his first 2 at bats.

  • Posts: 0 Phan in the outfield

    Wow – I do not agree that Werth’s defense was “spotty”. No way. He gunned two throws that were lasers: 1 to Chooch at home, wasn’t his fault the guy was called safe; and 1 to Castro(der . . I think?) at 2nd (Utley was displaced) who bobbled the ball (what a shock). The wind played havoc with both long shots he hit in this game: 1 was caught but it might’ve gone out at another park; the other one wound up being absolutely clutch and tied the game for us by landing on the foul line, sending 3 guys in, and being a double for him. Frankly the two games we won in the last 5 were due to him. He should be signed SOONER rather than later. Damn – get it done.

    I for one am glad this trip out west is over. Unfortunately my good friend, and sadly Met’s fan co-worker (I’m in nyc) is really really looking forward to the games this w/e and wants to go to 1 or 2. I’m feeling kinda, like, maybe I should stay home, or take some $$ & drink a lotta beer.

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Road Trips are usually a good bonding-thing for the team… and after a huge win yesterday, I think the Phillies come home ready to kick some a$$ this weekend..

    warm weather = warm bats..

    Mets are playing well, but the Phillies are ready to roll …

    Contreras should get any Save oppotunity until Lidge gets back, because Ryan Madson is horrible, terrible, and the worst in the 9th inning.

    How one guy can be so good in the 8th… but so bad in the 9th is insane

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