WOW. What a night. There are no words to describe what happened tonight for the Wildcard chase. There were four games going on for the Wildcard tonight: Phillies vs Braves, Yankees vs Rays, Red Sox vs Orioles and Cardinals vs Astros.
Although this game meant nothing for the Phillies, they battled it out with the Braves like they always do until the 13th inning. Blanton was the starter for this game with Hamels coming in to relieve hoping to get his 15th win on the season, but Uggla homered to put the Braves up 3-2. They held that lead until the ninth inning when Kimbrel came to close it out, but he blew his eighth game of the season by loading the bases.The Phillies scored the winning run on a shallow blooper by Hunter Pence to score Brian Schneider. Phillies did win their 102nd game which is a franchise record. Charlie Manuel becomes the Phillies most winning manager with 646 wins.
Yankees vs Rays. This was a GREAT game. Yankees were up 5-0 after two innings thanks to a Grand Slam by Mark Texiera. In the eighth the bases were loaded for the Rays, Sam Fuld drew a bases loaded walk to send home the Rays first run. Sean Rodriguez then got HBP to send another run home. B.J. Upton hits a sac fly to make it 7-3. With two outs Evan Longoria comes up to bat and hits his 30th home run, a three run homer to make it 7-6. Pinch-hitter Dan Johnson comes up in the bottom of the ninth with two outs. Johnson homered to make it 7-7, a tie game!! Onto extras. With one out in the 12th Evan Longoria came up to bat yet again, he hit a 2-2 pitch off Scott Proctor for a walk off home run. RAYS WIN 8-7.
After an 86 minute rain delay it was 3-2 Red Sox heading into the ninth inning with the Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon on the mound to close it out. Papelbon gives up a double to Reimond and blows a save to make it a 3-3 tie. Robert Andino then singled to win it for the Orioles, 4-3. Red Sox were eliminated after the Rays won.
Cardinals shutout the Astros 8-0. Carpenter pitched his fourth complete game and second shutout of the year. He didn’t allow a hit until the fourth, walked one and struck out 11. It was his 33rd complete game and 15th shutout of his career. Since the Braves lost, the Cardinals clinched the NL Wildcard and will be playing the Phillies in the NLDS on Saturday.
Best night by far this season! Bring on the Postseason!
The Phillies started their Opening Day homestand against the Houston Astros on Friday. Roy Halladay took the mound as the Phillies came back to win 5-4. He struck out six in six innings, allowed five hits and one run. On the other hand,Myers allowed three hits, two runs and three walks in seven innings. He threw just 85 pitches. The Phillies started a ninth inning rally with Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, Ben Francisco and Wilson Valdez all getting singles. John Mayberry Jr came up to bat with the bases loaded, he singled to give the Phillies a 5-4 walkoff win.
On Saturday, Cliff Lee phinally took the mound again being in pinstripes. This was the most anticipated start of the season, and it sure was a good one. Lee struck out 11 over seven innings. Phillies won 9-4
Sunday, Roy Oswalt took the mound against his former team. He pitched six strong innings, allowing two runs on five hits while striking out six and walking one. Ryan Howard had the first homerun of the season and Ben Francisco followed. Howard drove in four runs to help the Phils sweep the Astros with a 7-3 win.
Cole Hamels takes the mound tonight at 7:05 against the rival Mets.
It was a great start to the season. Can’t wait to see what’s in store!
So Chase has had tendinitis in his knee for a while now and its not getting any better. He got a cortisone shot but his knee hasn’t responded to it. The Phillies say they are going to continue considering “additional options” and try to avoid surgery. Chase has had mild patella tendinitis and chondromalacia (whatever that is) in the past but it resolved quickly. RAJ says that he’s not aiming for Utley to start Opening Day but wants this to get better for the future. This will be the 1st time in 5 years that Chase hasn’t started Opening Day. Rest up Utley we need you!
In other news, Charlie Manuel gets a 2 year contract extension! He is now signed through the 2013 season. Manuel led the Phillies to four straight division titles (2007-2010), 2 pennants (2008-2009) and the 2008 World Series Championship. Last year their 97-65 record was the best in the majors.
P.S.- 23 more days till Opening Day!! :)
Phinally, the day came as the Phillies mark their 64th year of training in Clearwater, Florida. As everyone already knows, the expectations for this Phillies team are very high – and its only February. The regulars that are there are J-Roll (early start for him, ever), Utley, Francisco, Brown (who will both be competing for an everyday spot in RF) & others.