PAY CHLOE. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE
For six innings, it looked like more of the same for the Phillies -- another first inning home run allowed putting the Phillies in an "insurmountable" early hole, and an otherwise solid outing from a Phillies starting pitcher going to waste thanks to poor at-bats, a lack of punch, and some bad decision-making. But the Phillies would score seven runs in the seventh and eighth innings thanks in large part to some Mets blunders to bail out Cole Hamels, as the Phillies held off a home sweep at the hands of the Mets, winning Sunday afternoon's contest by a final score of 8-2.
The first inning was Cole Hamels, 2009 vintage, as he struck out the first two batters, gave up a bloop single to right field by David Wright, and surrendered a long home run to Ike Davis on a miserable pitch. But as luck (and great pitching) would have it, the Mets would not score again. Hamels would finish the game after seven innings, allowing just one walk and striking out 10, working effectively with all four of his pitches -- fastball, cutter, change, and sort of unusually, his frequently erratic curveball
The Phillies would get one run back in the bottom of the first, but would leave the bases loaded, and would strand two runners in the second against Mets starter Mike Pelfrey, who pitched very well -- six innings, eight hits (all singles), two walks, and two strikeouts, and inducing 14 groundballs and no flyballs.
Things got funner for the Phillies in the seventh off reliever Ramon Ramirez. A pair of one out singles from Jimmy Rollins and Hunter Pence, followed by a wild pitch, put runners on second and third. Rollins would score on a Ty Wigginton sacrifice fly, and Pence would come around on a Laynce Nix double, the team's first extra base hit since Jimmy Rollins' double on Friday, and the Phillies would take a 3-2 lead, their first lead of the series.
The Phillies would put the game away in the eighth thanks to some shoddy Mets defense, and some timely two out hitting. After Pete Orr led off the inning with a double, Jim Thome struck out against reliever Manny Acosta. Placido Polanco would reach first on a throwing error by Ruben Tejada, an error that would ultimately be extremely costly to the Mets. Orr would advance to third on a Shane Victorino sacrifice fly, and Jimmy Rollins drew a walk to load the bases. Acosta would then walk Pence to force in the Phillies fourth run. New reliever Miguel Batista would promptly serve up a bases clearing double to Wigginton that would give the Phillies a 7-2 lead. The Phillies would score their eighth run on a squibber up the first base line off the bat of John Mayberry that Batista tried to let roll foul. But it didn't go foul, and Wigginton hustled around from second to score.
Jonathan Papelbon, warming in the eighth for what appeared would be a save situation in the ninth, pitched a sloppy but ultimately scoreless frame, giving up two hits and a walk, but striking out two.
The victory allowed the Phillies to save some face at home, and raised their record on the season to 4-5. The Phillies will head to San Francisco for the start of a nine game west coast trip, starting with Monday's main event -- Roy Halladay vs. Tim Lincecum.