Chase Utley extended his hit streak to 29 games; Ryan Howard hit his 34th homer; and Cole Hamels pitched through 7.1 innings and gave up only three runs. Sounds familiar, right? Unlike last night, the Phillies had more going for them than just that. The Phils took their mistakes from last night and stuck a harpoon through Dontrell Willis and the Marlins. (The Philadelphia MetBlog does not advocate violence toward fishies.)
The big story of the night all hinges on how positive or negative you want to be. We’re all Phillies fans here, right? Let’s get negative. Left-handed hurler Dontrell Willis collapsed in the bottom of the third inning, with the Phillies sending up 12 men and having 7 cross home plate, thanks in part to Ryan Howard’s 34th home run of the season, Willis walking three men, and Shane Victorino getting hit by a pitch. Willis didn’t make it to end the inning.
Cole Hamels got the win for this game, but not without earning it. Up to the seventh inning, Hamels had pitched rather well, allowing only three runs to score. With the Marlins’ Joe Borchard up to the plate, Hamels delivered a pitch that Borchard smoked back up to the mound. The ball hit Hamels right below his left knee and caused him to be taken out of the game. Later Xrays turned up negative, only showing a contusion. Ryan Franklin finished out the seventh, and Fabio Castro closed the game out.
Hopefully, the Phils can get a good night’s rest and relax those arms, because tomorrow’s double header will test everyone’s stamina and endurance. For the first game of the double header at 1:05 PM, Randy Wolf will take the mound for the Phillies while 4-0 pitcher Anibal Sanchez will start for the Marlins. At 7:05, the 2nd game of the double header will take place, and it’s Dollar Dog night, so first one to barf on the field wins!