Phillies Chop Braves From Playoffs with 102nd Win

Posted by Michael Baumann, Wed, September 28, 2011 11:51 PM | Comments: 38
2011 Game Recaps, Posts

Richie Ashburn Award: Chase Utley

This might be, without exaggeration, the single most dramatic day of regular-season baseball I’ve ever seen. I’d just like to put that out there and express how glad I was that the Phillies took part in the drama.

The Phillies get a franchise-record 102nd win. Charlie Manuel becomes the Phillies’ all-time winningest manager. Justin De Fratus gets his first major league win, and David Herndon grabs his first major league save. But most importantly, Atlanta completes a collapse so improbable it could propel the spaceship Heart of Gold. The Phillies sent the Braves to a 4-3 loss in 13 innings that, combined with the Cardinals’ win in Houston, will end the season for a certain collection of foam rubber tomahawk enthusiasts from Georgia.

The Phillies, having run out of games for pitchers to start, ran out not one but three starters this evening, with Joe Blanton allowing a run in two innings, Cole Hamels allowing two in three innings, and Vance Worley pitched around two walks and a hit in a scoreless inning.

Ryan Howard‘s RBI double off Tim Hudson in the first staked the Phillies to a 1-0 lead in the first, but Chipper Jones drove Michael Bourn in to draw level in the bottom half of the frame before Dan Uggla‘s two-run homer off of Hamels in the third put the Braves up 3-1. The Phillies, however, did not go easily. In the top of the seventh, with runners at the corners and one out, Jack Wilson booted a sure double play ball to allow Raul Ibanez to score. Fredi Gonzalez then pulled Hudson in favor of Eric O’Flaherty to face pinch hitter Shane Victorino. Rather than make Gonzalez pay for bringing in a lefty to face a batter with a .444 wOBA against lefties, Victorino hit into to a double play to end the inning.

In the eighth, an uncharacteristically wild Jonny Venters loaded the bases with two outs for Raul Ibanez, but rather than pinch-hit for a guy with a .256 wOBA against lefties, Uncle Cholly let Ibanez hit, and he collected one of each type of strike (called strike, foul ball, swing-and-miss) to end the inning.

But in the ninth, the levee finally gave way. Craig Kimbrel, one of the best relief pitchers in the game this season, let up a hard single to Placido Polanco, struck out Carlos Ruiz (and would have walked him if Dale Scott’s strike zone didn’t stretch halfway to Stone Mountain), then walked Ben Francisco and Jimmy Rollins to load the bases. Then, in an instant, the Braves’ cakewalk to a one-game playoff ended with a Chase Utley sacrifice fly.

THEN Kimbrel walked Hunter Pence to load the bases again, and Fredi Gonzalez went out to retrieve his best reliever. Kris Medlen, just over a year removed from Tommy John surgery, retired Michael Martinez to end the inning. Michael Stutes and Medlen traded clean frames, then with two out and Michael Bourn on first in the bottom of the 10th, Michael Schwimer, Anthony Varvaro, and Cristhian Martinez combined to keep it relatively quiet until the bottom of the 13th, when Justin De Fratus allowed a leadoff single to Jason Heyward, recorded two quick outs, and intentionally walked Michael Bourn to get to Martin Prado. With runners on first and second, a wild pitch allowed Heyward to advance, and only an outstanding play by Wilson Valdez prevented him from scoring on Prado’s grounder.

In the top of the 13th, the Phillies scratched across the killer blow. With two outs and Brian Schneider on first, Scott Linebrink allowed back-to-back singles to Chase Utley and Hunter Pence, the second of which was an opposite-field dribbler that barely rolled to the outfield grass. Linebrink got Mini Mart to kill the rally, but the damage was done.

David Herndon closed down the Braves for the game, and the season, without incident in the bottom of the 13th. Bring on the Cardinals.

Avatar of Michael Baumann

About Michael Baumann

Michael Baumann has written 229 articles on Phillies Nation.

Michael is a graduate student at Temple University who lost his childlike innocence when, at the age of 6, his dad let him stay up for the end of Game 6 of the 1993 World Series. Unsettled by the Phillies' recent success, he has threatened over the years to leave the team he loves if they don't start losing again, but has so far been unable to follow through. Michael spent 4 years as an undercover agent in Braves territory at the University of South Carolina, where he covered football and soccer for The Daily Gamecock before moving back up north. He began writing for The Phrontiersman in June 2009 before moving to Phillies Nation in January 2010.

  • Posts: 0 Jay in WV

    Lets go!! Bring on them Cards!

  • Posts: 0 Jay in WV

    I’ll just have to put the fact that St. Louis won the regular season series 6-3 aside and say we win this in 4. Bring it!!

  • Posts: 0 BART SHART

    I think we’ll sweep the Cards in three. We have really hungry stud starters who are out to prove something and we have home field advantage.

  • Posts: 0 CJ

    Go Cardinals. No city like Philadelphia should ever deserve to win a championship #classless

    • Posts: 0 Ryan H

      yea. classy city like st. louis. is that the same st. louis with the highest crime rate in the country? real classy. st. louis makes philly look like paris.

      • Posts: 0 CJ

        crime and class are different (for the most part LOL) We have the 3rd highest crime rate, but we dont cheer when other teams players get hurt…

  • Posts: 0 John Smith

    Hell of a game. Stayed up fo the hole thing and was ready to go to bed….then they turned two and nailed it down.

  • Posts: 0 Ryan H

    wow. if you aren’t watching all these games tonight and absolutely enthralled then you need to check your pulse. these games tonight are nothing short of shakespearian. with the rays coming back from a 7-0 deficit while boston watched during a rain delay in their game. and with the braves losing the way they did. just crazy stuff. I love this game!

  • Posts: 0 Ryan H

    and oh my jeezus. papelbon just blew it in baltimore!! just like kimbrel did in a 3-2 game in atlanta. baltimore was down to their last strike. my god. and the yankees just didn’t score with a man on 3rd and nobody out

    • Posts: 0 Ryan H

      game over in baltimore. wow. insane. i knew it was a bad omen because that idiot rich sutcliffe said there was no way papelbon would blow this game. he’ll probably be getting some angry letters from boston fans.

  • Posts: 0 John Smith

    @CJ Are you daft man!? You are on a Philly website. Trashtalk against the phils has no place here!

  • Posts: 0 Ryan H

    wow. to cap it off, longoria goes walk off to win the wild card just seconds after papelbon blew it up baltimore. hahahahha. laughing all night at boston fans. they must be lining up to jump into the charles river.

  • Posts: 0 CJ

    @John just callin it like i see it bro. but seriously tell ur phillys to stop trolling on other teams sites. We get it: ur the best. Leave the braves fans alone cuz its not exactly easy for us right now same wit the bosox

    • Posts: 577 Brian Sr. of CO

      Avatar of Brian Sr. of CO

      Real mature. So a few idiots who claim to be Phillies Phans go trolling, so you come on here and do the same thing? LOL. Did your mother ever teach you 2 wrongs don’t make a right. LOL. You are acting like you are the only troll on here all season, and you are only coming on here because a few morons go on other sites. News Flash, This site is often overflowing with trolls. Let those idiots who SAY they are Phillies Phans talk, stay on your own site, and sulk. And another News Flash, saying ” No city like Philadelphia should ever deserve to win a championship #classless” is just as you said CLASSLESS.

      • Posts: 0 CJ

        lol alright brian chill… lol ur right ur right i was acting the fool and it wasnt veryy classy. u got me on that one. I preciate u trying to stand up for ur guys but damn… i thought i was done.
        ok so imma be honest philly dnt have the best rep for class. or for that matter anything else. i mean the stories i hear abt this “awful” place i dnt wanna give them any taste of success y’know what i mean. then u and ur dope phils wanna make a joke out of every team in the league. just shut up n realize that philly is an awful place class or no class. and honestly wtf with that pic u got a profile pic for a philly fan page get a life brah. i’m out. call me when the phils win 15 strait division titles or get to their 10th championship #swag

      • Posts: 0 CJ

        and wait till we get jair, tommy, peter, kris (u saw a bit of him tonight), julio, vizcaino, and half of gwinnett’s team. lol have fun in first place while it lasts cuz we’ll be replacin yall shortly

      • Posts: 577 Brian Sr. of CO

        Avatar of Brian Sr. of CO

        I’m sorry, was that English? LOL. Not sure what I have to “chill” about. LOL. I also find it funny that Braves fans keep talking about 14 straight Division championships (FYI, CJ, the Braves only have 14, not 15). The Braves were lucky that 1994 was cut short by the strike, because when the shortened season ended, they were 6 games back. But then again, I think the Phillies have learned alot from the Braves over the years. They learned in 1993, that just because you have the best record in baseball, doesn’t mean they will win a World Series, or even go to one for that matter. And they learned in 2011 (thats this year right, LOL) that a lead of more than 8 games entering September does not mean you will go to the post season. More childish immature puke also ” i mean the stories i hear abt this “awful” place i dnt wanna give them any taste of success y’know what i mean. then u and ur dope phils wanna make a joke out of every team in the league. just shut up n realize that philly is an awful place class or no class.” DUH. Speaking from experience right. Oh wait, “the stories”. LOL. You believe everything you hear? LOL.

      • Posts: 0 Troutman

        Brian, it’s shocking his mother didn’t teach him that. Which is surprising since he still lives with her. In the basement.

  • Posts: 0 Manny


  • Posts: 0 Jay in WV

    Bahhh!! Who cares about the other fans…let them cry in their beers. They can troll all they want, doesn’t change the fact they are out and it’s now go time!!! Bring on the playoffs baby!! Woooo!!!

  • Posts: 0 NM

    You mad bro?

  • Posts: 0 Jay in WV

    Epic collapses in both leagues tonight….just unreal.

  • Posts: 0 Jeff

    braves are choke artists. chipper needs to retire and heyward is a bust. bobby cox is now smoking two packs.

    • Posts: 0 Ryan H

      he’ll probably beat his wife twice tonight too

      • Posts: 577 Brian Sr. of CO

        Avatar of Brian Sr. of CO

        You must be talking about Brett Myers. LOL. He got beat like a red headed step child by the red birds, and will surely go home and do the same thing he has done in the past. Get into a bar fight, or beat his wife. Talking about classless.

  • Posts: 577 Brian Sr. of CO

    Avatar of Brian Sr. of CO

    It almost seemed like Cholly and the starters he left in the game did as little as possible giving the Braves a chance to win. Mini Mart and Valdez going out to replace Polly and Howard. Then Schwimer! Wow. 102 wins. The problem is…St Louis. The Phillies are the best in baseball, and are hungry, but look at 2008. The Phillies were not the best, but the hottest in baseball. The Cards are the hottest in baseball. Then again, we also said the same thing about the Brewers. They were the “hottest team in baseball”, but we took 3 out of 4 from them.

    • Posts: 0 Ryan H

      if the tough lefty Jaime garcia can outduel doc in game 1 than I’ll be worried because carpenter can lock us down in game 2 for sure. thank god they don’t have wainwright

      • Posts: 577 Brian Sr. of CO

        Avatar of Brian Sr. of CO

        What we can home for is to get to their bullpen. Their bullpen has more losses than any other team in Baseball. I would suspect the only team with pitching to silence their VERY hot bats would be the 4 aces! For once, I was actually more wanting to see the Braves win this one, and beat the Cards in the 1 game playoff, because there was one thing for sure, The Braves were not going anywhere in the playoffs.

      • Posts: 0 John

        Carpenter won’t pitch till Game 3, but yeah Garcia is the key cog here since we’ll see him twice

      • Posts: 0 Mike

        Brian, a 1 game playoff with the red birds prob wouldn’t have mattered. The cards were 5-1 against the braves this year…at least the phils were 2-3 before the series they half assed last week.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Double Edge sword…Nuff Said

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Whats up with Cole and all the HR’s he has given up lately…To face the Cards Pujols, Berkman wow

  • Posts: 0 Jim

    Am I missing something, or is there literally no way that Cole picked up a loss today?

    • Posts: 0 JoshPM

      there’s no way that Cole picked up a loss because the Phillies won the game…

  • Posts: 2071 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    Wow, what an end of the regular season.
    Nothing really as predicted, the Rays with an unbelievable comeback over the Yanks? The Sox finishing off their collapse with a blown save by the now human Papelbon? And finally the Braves, finishing up a terrible month of September, blowing a huge what was thought insurmountable lead and falling out of the playoff picture altogether?
    Amazing. And here we are, just where we thought the Phils would be – over 100 wins and primed for the playoffs, finishing the season with a 1-2-3 sweep of the Atlanta Braves. All the more enjoyable since this game meant so much for them – ta ta, see ya’ll later.
    Now for the real test. We do not need to see extended slumps, team-wide goose eggs and hitless for 6 innings, behind 3-0 in the 7th only to eeek out a victory in the last of the 9th – its not time for “quality starts” (3 runs in 6 innings pitched); no, this is what we all expected from April – now we need to see Supermen rise, the real Doctober, the unbelievable Lee in post season, and a resemblance of Hollywood 2008 –
    We need to see some clutch hitting by Jimmy, Chase and Ryan – it all needs to come together, NOW!
    Congratulations Phillies and thanks for a great regular season! Now please, lets put the stamp on 2011 and this one in the books!
    Woooooooo HELL YEAH!!!!!!!!!!

  • Posts: 3073 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    I think I am the happiest for Cholly. He was right when, during the 8-game losing streak, he said that we’d be allright this week. He really deserves the distinction of being the winningest manager of the franchise. Think those guys in the clubhouse weren’t aware of what was on the line??…. altering the course of the Wild Card race, winning 102, and winning that game for Charlie.

    As for our match-up with STL…..bring them on. Lets the chips fall where they will. We have done our part up to this point.

  • Posts: 0 bostonkate

    When people ask me why I want to work in sports….nights like last night are why. I’ve spent the past few days in Baltimore, hoping to watch the Sox pull through. The Rays coming back from a 7-0 lead….unreal. They deserved it, and played with a bunch of heart.

    Thank God the Braves are done. I hate the Braves. And on to beat the Cardnials!

  • Posts: 65 Jonathan Nisula

    Avatar of Jonathan Nisula

    No comments on my picture? SMH.

Leave a Comment

>> Create a new Phillies Nation account.
>> Already registered with Phillies Nation? Log in here.
>> Comment without logging in:

Please ensure your comments comply with our Comment Policy.