Phillies Sweep Doubleheader in Dramatic Fashion

Posted by Pat Gallen, Wed, June 15, 2011 11:09 PM | Comments: 18
2011 Game Recaps, Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

Richie Ashburn Award: Kendrick/Ruiz

(PHOTO: Philly.com)

GAME 1: Phillies Win Behind a Strong Effort from Kendrick, 8-1

Elih Villanueva didn’t stand a chance. On a bright, beautiful afternoon, Wilson Valdez and Jimmy Rollins helped torch the poor kid – just up from the minor leagues, and just as quickly back down – in the Phillies 8-1 win. The 42nd win of the year put the Phillies up four in the division and 16 games over .500.

In the game-changing third inning, Villanueva was told to walk Ben Francisco to load the bases for the double play-making Valdez. Instead of a 6-4-3, Valdez plated three as he smoked a ball to deep left-center field, just between the converging Logan Morrison and Chris Coghlan. The two outfielders collided, Valdez made his way to third, and the Phillies had busted open a 5-1 lead. Three batters later, Jimmy Rollins would launch a home run to right field, extending the lead to 8-1.

In the process, Rollins would make me look rather idiotic.

Piggybacking the success of the offense, Kyle Kendrick scuffled in the first inning, but turned it around quickly thereafter. From the second inning until the seventh, he retired 14 of 15 batters, with the only baserunner reaching on an error by Domonic Brown. Kendrick is quietly having a solid season, both as a starter and reliever. A funny stat: Kendrick is now 4-4 with a 3.14 ERA, while Roy Oswalt is also 4-4 with a 3.12 ERA.

We’re quick to come down hard on Kendrick, but he’s been relatively solid, doing whatever is asked of him this season.

Don’t look now, but the Phillies bats are pretty warm. Thirty-five runs in the past five games is a swift turnaround from what has been the norm this year. For those who can count, that’s seven runs a game – they’re averaging just under 4.2 through 68 games. That puts them right in the middle of the back in the majors. But as we saw after Game 1 of the double-dip, the potential is there for some big production.

GAME 2: Chooch Walks it Off in 10th

Where to begin. Someday, things don’t really go as planned. Roles were reversed from day to night during the doubleheader. Kyle Kendrick shut down the Marlins in the opener and Roy Halladay was (sort of) the opposite, giving up four runs over seven innings. Again, the offense picked up the starting pitcher.

Down 4-2 in the ninth, Carlos Ruiz and Ross Gload both singled with one out to put two runners on base. Jimmy Rollins then absolutely smoked a ball off the leg of Marlins closer Leo Nunez, but it ricocheted to first baseman Gaby Sanchez for out number two. Ruiz and Michael Martinez – in as a pinch-runner for Gload – moved up a base, bringing Shane Victorino to the dish. He smoked a pitch up the middle, scoring the two, tying the game, and bringing back memories of ’07, ’08, and ’09.

After a scoreless top of the 10th pitched by Ryan Madson, Carlos Ruiz played Mr. Clutch again, singling home Ryan Howard, who had reached base after being hit by a pitch. Phillies 5, Marlins 4.

Things looked bleak early on as Halladay allowed two quick runs in the first. A tight strike zone may have been the indirect cause of those two tallies by the Marlins, as Halladay looked to have punched Chris Coghlan out. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf called strike three a ball and Coghlan went on to ground out, moving Hanley Ramirez from second to third. So instead of two outs with a runner on second, the scenario changed and Ramirez would score one batter later on a ground out by Logan Morrison. With the extra out to play with, Gaby Sanchez then launched a long homer to left-center field. Just like that, one pitch changed the direction of the inning and Marlins led 2-0.

Halladay would settle down until the fourth, when John Buck looped a ball just out of the reach of Rollins and into center field, scoring two more. Other than a couple of mistakes, Halladay was very good, striking out eight without walking a batter. He definitely induced plenty of contact, which the free-swinging Marlins took advantage of.

But the name of the game is keeping your team in the game, and Doc did that. Bob Ford of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweeted an excellent stat: the Phillies are 3-0 in Halladay’s no-decision’s this season. So while he was unable to get a win out of it, it was tight enough in the end for the comeback kids to strike once again. With the second win of the day, the Phils are now 17 over .500.

It’s gettin’ fun around here again, isn’t it?

Avatar of Pat Gallen

About Pat Gallen

Pat Gallen has written 1674 articles on Phillies Nation.

Pat is Editor-in-Chief of Phillies Nation. He also covers the Phils for 97.5 FM in Philly.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Our # 2 Ace Roy (Cole is #1 now) didnt have a great outing. They will have games like this none of them are perfect. Roy H kept us in the game bullpen did solid work. Clutch hits when needed Utley looking like Utley. If we can continue to score like this an keep Phighting back when down the rest of the league will start shaking in their boots.

  • Posts: 0 Andrew From Waldorf

    Halladay starts game 1 of the NLDS NLCS and WS and opening day 2012.

    The league is already shaking in their boots.

    This is what we all expected. Utley is either better or has learned how to endure however much pain he needs to endure to play like Chase Utley.

    Assuming the Phils make the playoffs with Halladay Hamels and Lee healthy.
    They are the team to beat.

    I am still not happy with Howards pitch selection. But he has till october to work on it.

    Great day.
    That game tomorrow is almost here already.

  • Posts: 0 Andrew From Waldorf

    Mets beat the Braves again.
    Thats a 5 game lead.
    Mets are 2 games ahead of the Marlins.

    .623 winning percentage

    The best phillies team ever?
    Historicly great team?
    Its possible.
    I’d like to see 100 wins.
    But the lead may be such that you back off and cant get there.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    I like to see a World Series win over the 100 win season better…

  • Posts: 0 Andrew From Waldorf

    Of course 83-79 with a world series win trumps 162-0 and losing to the Giants.

    When Doc pitched the no hitter vs the Reds. I said game won. Thank you.

    I know to some of you it means a lot. But believe me Doc would have traded it for Howard to have swung at that last pitch vs Brian Wilson.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Great that the Mets beat the Braves. The Braves just keep smelling up arses an dont seem to want to drop back a few steps.

  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    Pat, your article about Jimmy did not provoke ‘Burning him at the stake!’ or ‘Run him outta town!’ sentiments, you were plainly stating facts that are indisputable. Jimmy’s heroics do bring back memories but the truth of the matter is only his consistency will determine what happens to the Phils. I liked your article. If he could maintain a .285 – .295 average with the penchant for hitting with RISP – then we would not be having this conversation.

    • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

      Avatar of Pat Gallen

      Thanks Brooks. Ive come across people who simply read the title and judge it’s information strictly on that. If more idiots read the damn thing instead of shooting off their opinion because it says Jimmys getting old, we’d have more educated opinions going around.
      The facts say Jimmy is getting older and slowing down. People just want to look at the last 3 games instead of the entire sample he’s providing for the season.

      I’m glad we have such a smart fan base here on PN. We get intelligent postings from people who actually read, and for that I’m grateful.

    • Posts: 0 Everybody Loves Chooch

      I think that even optimistically .285-.295 is out of reach for Jimmy. He’s only had a BA that high twice in his career (2004 and 2007).

      Honestly, I would be happy with .270-.280, which would put him solidly in his career numbers. I’d like to see him swing at fewer first pitches, and take more walks.

      Interestingly, his BA and OBP right now are the best they’ve been since 2008, what has gone down consistently are his power numbers.

      If he can improve his extra base hits, (in addition to what I said above) I think Jimmy will do just fine.

      • Posts: 0 Everybody Loves Chooch

        I should have said, continue to take more walks. Because that’s one thing he’s actually doing fairly well at, for Jimmy.

  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    Haha – I was just about to say “Hey, you did not post a Jeff about Jimmy!”

    The young lady sitting next to me during game 1 said she felt sorry for the kid Villaneuava – I told her “Dont”… he was a sacrifice last night. 92 pitches in 3 innings? Time to grow some whiskers kid or start a new profession..

  • Posts: 0 robyn

    Please tell me someone has the shot of Shane getting a helmet hit by awkward catcher toss that got him on base in game one yesterday … what a hoot!

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    yea I think Villaneuva makes $400,000 this year just for pitching in the big leagues right?

    OR is that not how it works… If you’re on a minor league deal still and get called to the majors, do you automatically get paid the minimum – or you only get paid that rate for each day you’re with the big club?

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  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    Man, Blanton you aren’t missed. AT ALL.

    Kendrick is putting together a very, very solid season and I’m glad Pat mentioned that in this recap. “A funny stat: Kendrick is now 4-4 with a 3.14 ERA, while Roy Oswalt is also 4-4 with a 3.12 ERA.” Who would’ve thought?

    So far, he’s been pretty damn impressive…

    Side note: His higher FIP and xFIP probably mean that he won’t be keeping this up for too long… (Blanton’s FIP and xFIP are considerably better.. but he needs to come back from his injury first)

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    I’m praying that Worley pitches well vs. Seattle to get his trade value going again . . . . . make the Twinkies want him

  • Posts: 2965 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Was at the afternoon game yesterday. Kendrick looked great. He really pitched a good game. We were 0-3 before yesterday so I feel we really deserved to see an 8-1 whipping. And it was all the more sweet with that awesome come-from-behind nightcap win.

  • Avatar of The Original Chuck P

    Pat – as soon as you wrote that about Jimmy, you pretty much guaranteed that he would get it J-Rollin (you like how I did that)… it was a decent piece. I think that Jimmy is still one of the best shortstops in baseball. I’m not sure if he’s 100% right now… not sure if he ever fully recovered from his leg issues. That being said, he still covers ground and throws well. He hits for a decent average, has some pop and is efficient on the base paths. He doesn’t do any of these things as well as he used to but the market for shortstops is weak. Besides Tulo, Hanley and Reyes, there’s not much out there that I would take over him. I would hate to see anyone else playing shortstop for the Phillies but I like Jimmy. A cheaper replacement with a slick glove wouldn’t devastate the team statistically but the intangibles that he brings are worth something.

    A four game sweep would be huge… and I think it will happen.

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