Vance Worley was mostly effective before a seventh inning meltdown, and the Ty Wigginton and the legendary Carlos Ruiz paced the offense with a pair of home runs, as the Phillies held off the Pirates for a 5-4 victory tonight in Philadelphia.
Can we talk about Carlos Ruiz for a few minutes? The catcher had three hits tonight, including a solo shot in the eighth that turned out to be the difference in the game. Ruiz is now hitting .361 on the season, best in the National League.
Strangely, at least this season, the other story of the game was the bullpen, and some big defensive plays in the seventh and eighth innings. Michael Schwimer entered the game with a one run lead in the seventh, and runners on second and third with no outs, and didn't allow either runner to score thanks to a tremendous throw home from John Mayberry on a sacrifice fly. In the eighth, the above-mentioned Ruiz made a nice catch on a foul pop bunt, and a fantastic throw on a dropped third strike play on Pedro Alvarez.
Jonathan Papelbon surrendered a solo home run to Michael McKenry in the top of the ninth, but held on for the save.
Raul Valdes starts tomorrow in a bullpen roulette game for the Phillies. So this was a big win.