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Offense Erupts Late, Phils Earn Split With Cards

Posted by Alex Lee, Sun, April 21, 2013 11:48 PM | Comments: 8
2013 Gameday, News, Posts

After striking for two runs in the first, the Phillies offense was unable to get to a very hittable Jake Westbrook through six innings on Sunday night.  Enter the Cardinals bullpen.  The Phils scored five runs in the seventh and eighth – three of which came off a towering three-run shot from Erik Kratz – to notch a 7-3 victory and a series split against St. Louis.  Kyle Kendrick kept his team in it with a gutsy six-inning performance against a potent Cardinals lineup.

Kyle Kendrick was solid again on Sunday for the Phillies.

Kyle Kendrick was solid again on Sunday for the Phillies.

OFFENSE COMES UP BIG WHEN IT COUNTS

- After grounding into a rally-killing double play in the sixth, Ben Revere redeemed himself two innings later when he stung a tie-breaking single up the middle in the eighth off Cardinals reliever Mitchell Boggs.  Kratz hit the next pitch from Boggs deep into the cold Philadelphia night to blow it open, and the Phillies concluded their nightmarish week on a high note.

- Within that eighth inning, Michael Young extended his hitting streak to 12 games in controversial fashion.  Young hit a routine ground ball that deflected off Cardinals reliever Mitchell Boggs’ glove into the infield’s no man’s land.  The hometown scorer quickly credited Young with a hit.  Young scored the game-winning run shortly thereafter on Revere’s single.

- It wasn’t all good for the Phillies on Sunday night.  Revere’s double play was one of three in big spots for the Phillies and squandered a bases loaded, one-out opportunity.  An inning later, the Phils couldn’t get Laynce Nix home from second base with no outs after he tied the game with a pinch hit double.  The Phillies left nine runners in scoring position.

PITCHERS DO THEIR JOB

-Kyle Kendrick put together his third consecutive solid start, battling through six innings despite throwing 53 pitches in the first two frames.  Kendrick gave up two runs, eight hits and a walk, striking out six Cardinals in the process.  In his last three starts, Kendrick has given up only four runs in 19 innings, lowering his 2013 ERA to 3.28.

- After giving up a home run to Matt Carpenter in the first inning, Kendrick was able to escape trouble in the second and fourth before giving up a 2-1 lead in the sixth.  It looked like it would be an early exit for Kendrick after the second inning, but he was economical enough with his pitches afterwards to notch a quality start.  He threw a total of 113 pitches in the outing.

- The combination of Antonio Bastardo, Chad Durbin, Mike Adams and Jonathan Papelbon combined to go three innings and give up one unearned run after Kendrick’s exit.

UTLEY MAKING MISTAKES

- Chase Utley made a critical throwing error in the seventh inning that put Jon Jay on second base with no outs.  Jay nubbed a slow grounder past Antonio Bastardo and Utley rushed the throw, which sailed by Howard.  Jay later scored on an Allen Craig single, giving St. Louis the lead.  It looked like Howard could have come off the bag and made a better effort to prevent the ball from getting past him.

- Not even Utley is immune to physical mistakes, but the second baseman is normally as mentally sound as ballplayers come.  Nevertheless, Utley displayed uncharacteristic carelessness on the base paths in the first inning when he was doubled up on a routine fly ball, cutting what looked like a promising inning short.  It appeared that Utley thought there were two outs on the play.  It is worth mentioning, however, that Chase was brilliant just a play before, tagging from first on a Ryan Howard fly ball.

DID YOU NOTICE?

- Kyle Kendrick induced only 2 whiffs on 33 first inning pitches.  The Cardinals fouled 10 pitches off and had two hits, one of which was Carpenter’s laser over the right field fence.

- Starting in left field, John Mayberry Jr. had a walk, a hit and a steal.  Mayberry leads the Phillies in on-base percentage (.409), slugging percentage (.553) and therefore OPS (.962) in the early going in 2013.

- Playing half way up at third base in the top of the sixth, Michael Young chose not to throw home on a ground ball off the bat of David Freese with runners on second and third, resulting in 2-2 tie.  It looked like he could have had a play at the plate.

- With lefty specialist Randy Choate in to face Utley in the seventh, ESPN color guy John Kruk pointed out that although Utley is solid against southpaws, Ryan Howard’s ineptitude against them limits the second baseman in spots like that one.  Pretty straight forward, but nevertheless an under-reported point in the ongoing lefty-lefty debate.

WHAT’S NEXT?

- Jonathan Pettibone, 22, will make his major league debut tomorrow night in the series opener against the Pirates.  A 2008 third round draft pick, Pettibone ranked as the #6 Phillies prospect by Phillies Nation in the offseason.  He has been tagged for 10 earned runs in only 9.1 innings so far in two starts this year at Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Avatar of Alex Lee

About Alex Lee

Alex Lee has written 43 articles on Phillies Nation.

Alex is a freelance journalist from Philadelphia whose work has appeared in the Daily News, the Inquirer, USA Today as well as several other publications and blogs. Now based in Baltimore, he is MLB.TV's most satisfied customer.

 
 
  • Posts: 0 JohnMatrix

    Is utley high on pain meds? Might explxain his Two base running mistakes. His wide throw to first howard shoukd have handled.

     
  • Posts: 0 Bart Shart

    Cold weather affects Californians is many strange ways. Just ask Lenny Dykstra.

     
  • Posts: 0 Rabbi

    Kruk’s comments last night about Howard mirri what I have been lamenting for years, i.e., that Howard’s become pull-happy. OK, so we now know that Howard’s aware of the problem, and we also know that the coaches have been trying to get him to let the ball “travel” more. Let’s hope that the message finally sinks in and The Big Piece starts driving the ball the other way, like he used to when he first came up.

     
    • Posts: 0 schmenkman

      I also hope he gets into a groove and hits more to left. So far this year, with only 51 balls in play, he has hit only 10% the opposite way, 47% up the middle, and 43% pulled to right.

      According to baseball-reference.com, here is the % of balls he has hit to each part of the field in the past, starting with 2006, ending with 2012:

      Opp Field: 20%, 13%, 16%, 12%, 12%, 16%, 15%
      Up Middle: 49%, 52%, 52%, 56%, 56%, 49%, 51%
      Pulled ……: 31%, 34%, 32%, 32%, 32%, 35%, 34%

       
      • Posts: 18 Nah.Roots

        Avatar of Nah.Roots

        Interesting…if someone had a gun to my head I would have guessed his opp field trend would have been more drastic. Looks somewhat consistent from 2007-2012

         
      • Posts: 5358 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        I’ve seen the charts showing the difference in where his balls in the air differ from those on the ground and line drives. He gets balls in the air to left with much more frequency than his overall percentages suggest. In fact, even when teams have the shift on they play him straight away or slightly left in the outfield.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        Lefty, I don’t disagree with what you say, but are you also saying that he is pulling more than in the past?

        I don’t have stats for that, but these are extra base hits by field, again 2006-12:

        Opp: 32%, 12%, 28%, 10%, 22%, 20%, 16%
        Mid: 43%, 51%, 56%, 60%, 47%, 48%, 60%
        Pull: 25%, 37%, 15%, 29%, 31%, 31%, 24%

        These are all other balls in play (includes singles and all outs):

        Opp: 16%, 14%, 13%, 12%, 11%, 15%, 15%
        Mid: 51%, 53%, 51%, 55%, 57%, 50%, 49%
        Pull: 33%, 34%, 36%, 33%, 32%, 36%, 36%

         
      • Posts: 5358 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        No, not really. In fact I guess I was a little O.T. there.

        I was just referring to the difference in F.B. to other, or overall. My point was only that for instance last year he had 60% XBH to mid, as opposed to 49% other, and only 24% XBH in the pull column, and 36% other. As far as over the years, I can’t really see a trend.

         
 
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