The Phillies could not have wished for a better start to the second half of the season, it was a night when Jamie Moyer went 7 innings giving up just 1 hit and a walk, throwing 95 pitches, the bullpen continued what Moyer started, Madson threw a scoreless 8th inning and Romero threw a scoreless 9th inning, the pitches really were like a knife through butter, or in this case a filet knife through fish.
Keeping with the theme of things Ibanez and Howard homered into the SEA of empty seats, Ibanez hit a 2 run shot in the 2nd and a solo in the 4th, Howard became the fastest player in MLB history to reach 200 home runs with his solo shot in the 6th innning.
This win put Moyer at 9-6 for the year, the blogs and comments during the last week or so have been calling for the Phillies to acquire Halladay, I am all for this, however, more and more it has been written that Moyer should be the one to lose his spot, games like this are why we need to keep Moyer in the rotation. Currently at 9-6 for the year, games he has started the Phillies are 11-7, he is on his way to double figure wins again this year and can be a major asset in the clubhouse as well as on the mound, as the Phillies make a bid for back to back World Series wins. Just my thoughts to those who doubt Moyer has anything left to offer.
Howard reached his 200th homer mark in his 658th major league start, smashing the previous record held by Ralf Kiner who took just 706 major league games, hopefully Ryan is back on track to keep hitting the long ball.
RAUUUUUUL showed us that there should be no doubts as to whether he lost his timing at the plate during his DL period, with 2 long balls tonight he leads the Phillies with 24 homers, even after being out for those 20 games.
Can the Philles NET another win against the Marlins tomorrow, with Cole Hamels on the mound, in a fresh start after the break, he needs to put the first half games behind him and move onward and upward and start off with a solid outing of at least 7 innings.
Jayson Werth went deep to record his 20th home run of the season making him the 4th player to be on 20 home runs or more before the All Star Break, a first for the Phillies franchise and only the second MLB team to accomplish this feat. Werth has put up impressive numbers in the first half of this season and has more than proved that he can be an everyday player, I personally thought he would struggle as an everday outfielder, so well done Jayson, you are on a season setting personal best. Jayson’s name has been thrown in the mix for the All Star Game, since Beltran is injured, is Werth worthy of an All Star pick, well he has certainly put up the numbers, however I believe there are others who are a little more deserving, if it’s an outfielder they need then I would have to go with Kemp, he has better numbers this year, if it’s just any position player then there are a number to choose from and everyone will have there own personal favorite.
Chase Utley, in a ball park that is suposed to allow almost anyone to go deep, showed everyone last night that you dont need to hit the ball over the fence to get a home run, his second inside the park home run against the reds. This one came in the 3rd inning and it was Utley’s 20th homer of the year, although there wasn’t a play at the plate this time, he needed some recovery time to catch his breath, who wouldn’t.
Jamie Moyer pitched through 5 innings giving up 6 runs on 8 hits, since the offence took the lead in the bottom of the 5th Jamie was the pitcher of record giving him, his 254th career win. Jamie gave up two home runs, not unusual for Jamie, all in all a good outing for him.
Chan Ho Park gave another stellar performance from the bullpen, 3 scoreless innings, giving up 1 walk, with 4 strike outs.
Brad Lidge continues to make everyone nervous in the 9th inning, after getting the 1st two batters he gave up a walk, but came back nicely to close out the game with a scoreless inning.
Even though the Phillies have taken six of seven in this home stand, they still have a below .500 record at home this season, a sweep of the Pirates would put them still 1 game shy of the .500 mark. We all know that sweeping the Pirates is a huge task, they have played well against NL East teams this year, I for one am glad we have Blanton, Hamels and Happ to face them this weekend.
Victorino won the vote for the final spot on the All Star team, he is more than deserving of his place, he again last night picked up a couple of walks, a hit and a couple of RBI’s and continues to play gold glove quality defense in the outfield. Well Done Shane!!
To the Pirates, welcome to Philadelphia, the in state rivalry isn’t quite as intense as some would think, but still it will make for a good weekend, especially if the Phillies keep up this excellent home stand performance.
RAUL IBANEZ will he return today or will they wait till tomorrow, I think he will probably be here today, but my gut tells me they should probably wait till tomorrow.