After dropping the first two games in Arizona, Cliff Lee and Jonathan Papelbon keyed a three to one win Saturday night, to put the Phillies in a position to split the four game weekend set with the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Phillies sent their newfound ace Kyle Kendrick to the bump, looking to salvage the split.
Kyle Kendrick didn’t have very good numbers in Arizona entering today’s game and things didn’t start well for Kendrick Sunday, as Gerrardo Parra lined a homerun over the rightfield wall in the Diamondbacks first at-bat of the game. The D-Backs would add on another run in the first inning as A.J. Pollock drove in Eric Chavez to give the snakes a 2-0 lead after the first inning.
It appeared like Kyle Kendrick was headed for another rough start against the Diamondbacks, but to his credit he was able to settle in after the first inning and toss six more innings not giving up a run in the process, and only striking out four. Unfortunately, as has been the case many times this year, it appeared a great start was going to go wasted, as the Phillies were held scoreless through the first eight inning by Brandon McCarthy.
In the top of ninth however, the Phillies got after Heath Bell. Chase Utley had one of his four hits in the game, and Delmon Young drove in Utley with an RBI double to the rightfield corner. Dom Brown kept the ninth inning rally going as he singled into left-center to score John Mayberry,(who pinch ran for Delmon Young), and tie the game.
Carlos Ruiz would pop out to end the inning, and send the game to the bottom of the ninth, and since the Phillies didn’t have the lead it meant that Charlie Manuel had to give the ball to someone in his bullpen not named Jonathan Papelbon for another inning, which is always an adventure.
Antonio Bastardo started the ninth inning recording two outs, including a strikeout, and walking one. Justin De Fratus came on to relieve Bastardo and he was able to get the Phillies out of the ninth, and send the game into extra innings.
In the top of the tenth, the Phillies core came alive to spark a win. Jimmy Rollins smoked a single into left, and Chase Utley doubled into right, to put runners on second and third, with one out, and give Ryan Howard a shot to be the hero. Howard, was hitless in the series up to this point, but all he really needed to do was put the ball into the outfield to give the Phillies a lead. And he did just that, ripping a single into right to score both Rollins and Utley, and give the Phils a four to two lead, heading into the bottom of the tenth.
In the bottom of the tenth inning Jonathan Papelbon continued his great series, by shutting down the Diamondbacks, and getting Martin Prado to fly out to John Mayberry, to end the game, and clinch the series split for the Phillies.
The Phillies will have Monday off before welcoming in the Cleveland Indians for a two game set. Hopefully the Phils are able to get better results out of this two game set with the Indians than they did in the two game set with them last month.
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