Phillies Win Both, Magic Number Down To Two

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Thu, September 15, 2011 10:21 PM | Comments: 15
2011 Game Recaps, Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

Game 1: Phillies Win 3-1 Behind Strong Pitching


Under an overcast sky and a few raindrops, the Phillies took the first game of the double header with the Marlins by a score of 3-1. Kyle Kendrick pitched five innings while giving up just one run on a solo shot by Logan Morrison. That came in the 5th inning, and broke up Kendrick’s no-hitter. Michael Stutes came in to pitch the sixth and pitched two scoreless innings, a good sign from the young righty.

The Phillies’ offense got going early, but stalled after that. Doubles by Hunter Pence and Raul Ibanez gave the Phillies a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but Anibal Sanchez settled down and pitched a great game from that point on. Morrison’s homer put the score at 2-1 in the fifth.

In the 7th, the Phillies loaded the bases with one out. Shane Victorino stepped up to the plate and failed to even make contact, getting called out on strikes. It looked as though the opportunity was spoiled, but Ryan Webb helped the Phillies out, walking Placido Polanco to give the Phillies a run.

In the following inning, Antonio Bastardo recorded just one out before Brad Lidge was called upon to clean up. Lidge gave up a single, but Raul Ibanez threw out Omar Infante at the plate to preserve the lead–and Bastardo’s ERA. After a walk to load the bases, he struck out John Buck on three pitches to end the inning that received a loud ovation from the crowd.

The Phillies threatened in the bottom of the eighth, hitting three straight singles of Mike Dunn to load the bases, again with one out. This time, Michael Martinez and Ross Gload spoiled the opportunity with a pop-out and a ground-out.

Ryan Madson came in to close out the game and got himself into trouble right away. He gave up back-to-back singles to Bryan Petersen and Donnie Murphy before he got an out. After a bunt to move the runners, he threw a filthy 0-2 changeup that Emilio Bonafacio had no chance on. Infante swung at the very next pitch and popped up to Carlos Ruiz to end the game. The win was the Phillies’ 96th of the year, one away from their total last year.

The Magic Number to win the East went down to three with the win.

Game 2: Lee Narrowly Misses Shutout, Phils Walk It Off in 10


Ryan Howard hit a walk-off double in the bottom of the 10th inning to send the Phillies to victory. The Magic Number to win the division is now down to just two.

Lee tossed nine innings, coming within a strike of his 7th shutout on the year. Jose Lopez had other ideas, sending and 0-2 cutter in the seats. Lee’s strong start is something that isn’t surprising, given his trend as of late. He’s seemed virtually unhittable over his last eight starts–easily the Phillies best pitcher over that stretch. He’s been so good that he has forced himself into the Cy Young race alongside Clayton Kershaw and teammate Roy Halladay. Lee’s final line looked like this: 9.0 IP/5 H/1 R/1ER/12 K.

For the Marlins, Alex Sanabia (who?) pitched quite well, with his lone mistake proving to be the difference in the game until the ninth inning. That mistake was a line drive home run given up to John Mayberry Jr that barely got over the wall. The swirling winds and cold weather made for a tough night for the hitters.

Now with 97 wins, the Phillies have matched their win total from last year in 14 less games. And with the magic number being just two, it means that the Phillies can clinch the NL East tomorrow–or any day from this point on.

This double header was eerily similar to the one 3 months ago. Both double headers were against the Marlins and Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies got a strong start from Kyle Kendrick with a Logan Morrison home run being the lone run given up in both game 1′s. They had a walk off victory in both nightcaps. But this time, it means that the Phillies are that much closer to the playoffs.

The Phils welcome the Cardinals to Citizens Bank Park on Friday for a 4-game set. The NL East is likely to be clinched this weekend.

Oh yeah, things are definitely getting funner.

Avatar of Jonathan Nisula

About Jonathan Nisula

Jonathan Nisula has written 229 articles on Phillies Nation.

Just a regular guy writing his thoughts for Phillies Nation. Grew up in Yardley, PA and current student.

  • Posts: 36 jkaydee

    Avatar of jkaydee

    Howard must have been reading the Gameday thread prior to his 10th inning heroics. It must have added fuel to his fire. Shame Lee earned a no-decision for his efforts; he pitched wonderfully. Fellas, as I tell my middle school students, ignore those who name call. Ad hominem attacks are empty and meaningless. I’ve learned more about this ball club and fan base by reading ALL of your perspectives. Besides, we are ALL morons for investing such time and emotional energy into an activity where grown men play a game while earning more money any of us will ever see! That being said, Go Phils!!!

    • Posts: 0 brooks

      I resemble that remark!

    • Posts: 0 JB

      Run support is what was needed – Cliff Lee missed his spot on that 0-2 pitch (nice catch by Raul b4 that) and that’s the goal of hitters: take pitches to find the one that you like and/ or take advantage of the mistakes (aces give up very few mistakes, if any).

  • Posts: 0 BART SHART

    Tough break for Cliff Lee. He was outstanding. No win, no shutout for him tonight.

  • Posts: 0 BART SHART

    Gee, Jkaydee, we could have gone bowling, or played pool or poker, or went drinking or to a strip club, or learned another language. Life is meant to be both productive and ENJOYABLE. There are worse things than being a passionate fan, as long as it doesn’t go too far. By the way, you sound like the kind of teacher I would have wanted my kids to have when they were in middle school.

  • Posts: 0 Ryan H

    where’s Andrew to talk about how every time Ryan Howard is up in a big spot he “never comes through”? what a friggin dope that troll is!

    shame about cliff. this is one of the most bittersweet victories I can remember because we all just wanted to see cliff end it and nobody in their right mind thought it was even possible for anything else to happen. he was dominating as much as I’ve ever seen any pitcher dominate. cruising along like a hot knife through butter. but he made one bad pitch.

    • Posts: 0 loupossehl

      And three days ago, his 6th-inning homer in a tight game temporarily gave the Phillies the lead over the Brewers.

  • Posts: 0 Ryan H

    by the way, I think Cliff deserves the Cy at this point. He’s got my vote. …. if i had one

  • Posts: 0 Dark

    Small correction: Kendrick had a no-hitter before the homer, not a perfect game. I think he hit a batter.

    • Posts: 64 Jonathan Nisula

      Avatar of Jonathan Nisula

      Good catch. My mistake. I must’ve missed the HBP (John Buck in the 2nd) and I could’ve swore I heard TMac say Kendrick had a perfect game.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Man i saw a clip of Lee after Howard had his hit. This offense just had to better when the Pitches pitch Gems like his last night.

  • Posts: 971 betasigmadeltashag

    Avatar of betasigmadeltashag

    Is it just me or has the offense latly done an entire 180, from going six innings before they decide to hit to getting all their runs in the first two innings and then go to sleep. It is a shame Cliff did not get the win, but he did look dominating.
    And the selfish fan in me wants them to hold off from clinching the East until Sunday. Did not go to any Sunday games in August, So it would be really cool to be there for that game. But really would not mind them clinching earlier.
    Interesting to hear Charlie talk about getting this thing locked down, rest some guys and then get them all on the field at the same time for a week or so to get them to gel together.

  • Posts: 2990 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez both suck. At least that’s what so many people on here say. Yet both helped win that game last night. Raul with his amazing catch in the 9th (Lopez’ HR that followed only TIED the game). And Howard with the big hit.

    Yup. They both suck.

  • Posts: 0 Jeff

    I really think since Pence got switched the offense got hurt. Need to get these guys back out there and gel. Lee was amazing. Love that he says Raul saved the game. That would of been a two run homer. Lee is class. Give him the CY for his performance this year. Doc is great but 6 shutsouts. AMAZING.

  • Posts: 0 joycedaffodil

    Having seen and read some of Mr. Rollins interview and comments one must chuckle at his performance since we became aware that the club wouldn’t be what it is without him. What is somewhat surprising is that the Team did ok while he was on the DL last year and this year. Everyone feels he is the “glue that holds the Team together.” Marshal Harris can’t make a comment without letting us know about Jimmy Pop up. When it comes to ego, I think he has plenty for everyone on and around the Team. Needless to say I am disappointed at not only him but the Team for some of their playing. The pitching has been a real joy, but the hitting is sagging at best. Go Phillies.

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