Good Times: Phillies Roll Over Reds 10-4

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Good Times: Phillies Roll Over Reds 10-4

In last night’s 19 inning epic, one of the heroes was undoubtedly Wilson Valdez for what he did on the mound. This afternoon, things were turned on their head again when Cliff Lee was the star for what he did with his bat.

On a day where Cliff probably didn’t have his best stuff on the mound, he certainly made up for it at the plate. Lee was 2-4 with 3 RBI, including a bases loaded ground rule double in the 6th that put the Phils up for good. While Cliff might not have pitched to his high standard, Lee certainly wasn’t bad on the mound, giving up four runs and giving most of the bullpen the day off with an 8 innings effort where he struck out eight. Jose Contreras, who was activated off the DL today, came on to pitch a 1-2-3 ninth.

Chase Utley aso slammed his first homer of the season with a solo shot in the 8th inning. He’s still obviously working himself back however and was 1-5 on the day.

Raul Ibanez hit a three run homer in the third, Michael Martinez had a couple of RBI and rookie Domonic Brown looked good at plate with a couple of hits and a walk.

The Reds had some tough luck when starter Homer Bailey was forced from the game after just four innings with back spasms. That forced Dusty Baker to bring in Daryl Thompson, who was called up this morning, and make him pitch three innings to give his taxed bullpen a rest. Thompson was tagged for five runs and gave up five walks en route to to taking the loss.

The Phillies now head to Queens for a weekend series with the New York Mets. Roy Oswalt is scheduled to take on Chris Capuano tomorrow night.


Wilson Valdez Gets The Win As Phillies Defeat Reds 5-4 In 19 Innings

Wilson Valdez earned his first career win after he was called on to pitch the 19th inning as the Phillies beat the Reds 5-4 in the longest game in Citizens Bank Park history. For those who stayed up or stayed down at the ballpark to watch, it was a game you will never forget. 

Roy Halladay started the game and endured a frustrating evening where he allowed 11 hits over 7 innings, where almost all where ground ball singles that squeaked through the infield. The game would head into the ninth tied at 3-3. The Phillies would load the bases with one out in the bottom of the ninth, but couldn't get a run in and the game headed to extra innings.

It looked like it would end quick as Jay Bruce, who killed the Phillies over the first nine innings, homered in the 10th to put the Reds up 4-3. However, Ryan Howard would answer in the bottom of the inning with a monster shot of his own to tie it up. That would do it for the scoring for the next 8.5 innings.

The hero of that scoreless stretch for the Phillies has to be Danys Baez, who threw 73 pitches over five innings in which he allowed one hit and no runs. The Phillies would use their final pinch hitter in the 18th when Dane Sardinha came on for Baez and struck out. At that point, no one was warming up in the Phillies pen and it became clear that a position player was going to have to take the mound to face the heart of the Reds order.

That man ended up being Wilson Valdez and the remaining crowd went nuts when he took the mound. During his entire appearance, they chanted "Let's Go Wilson!." He was actually hitting 89 on the gun and got reigning NL MVP Joey Votto to fly out for the first out of the inning. Scott Rolen came up second and Valdez actually hit him to put a man on. Jay Bruce came up third in the inning and flied out. Valdez would then retire the opposing pitcher, Carlos Fisher, for the final out of the inning. It only took him 10 pitches. He has never pitched professionally at any level before tonight and became is the first position player to win a game since Brent Mayne in 2000. Just for good measure, Valdez had three hits in the game as well.

Raul Ibanez, who would get the game winning RBI the following inning, said they knew Valdez had to be the guy to pitch.

"He's a great athlete. So it was obvious to us that he was going to be the guy to pitch. He throws hard and he's got a great arm..."

Then he got a shaving cream pie to the face. Charlie Manuel said after the game that he had never used a position player to pitch in his managerial career.

Back to the game... Jimmy Rollins singled to lead off the bottom of the 19th and Domonic Brown drew a walk to put two on with no one out. Placido Polanco dropped down a bunt to move the runners over and Ryan Howard was intentionally walked to load the bases. That brought Raul Ibanez to the plate, who hit a deep sacrifice fly to center to secure a win for Wilson Valdez.

Here's just a few facts about tonight:

  • It was the longest game in the majors this season in terms of innings.
  • The official time was six hours and 11 minutes
  • It was the longest game between the Phillies and Reds since May 21, 1967, a game that the Phillies won  2-1 in 18 innings. Amazingly, the Phillies used only 2 pitchers in that game.  Tonight they used nine.
  • It was the longest game in Philadelphia in since July 7, 1993 when the Phillies beat the Dodgers in 20 innings
  • Domonic Brown had five at bats and he didn't enter the game until the ninth inning.
  • Carlos Ruiz ended up playing third base and nearly ran down a foul ball, jumping over the rain tarp. This after he caught 18 innings.
  • The two teams used 40 different players
  • Over 250 baseballs were used.

These two teams now have to prepare to face each other later today at 1 p.m. The Phillies have Cliff Lee going and could desperately use a complete game or at least, 8 innings from him. You can bet Cliff will know that.


Phillies 10 Reds 3: Phillies Bats Come Alive!

The Phillies offense had only scored nine runs over their past six games, but equaled that total by the 3rd inning of tonight's game as they crushed the Reds 10-3. It was the sixth straight loss for Cincinnati. Jimmy Rollins, Placido Polanco and Raul Ibanez all homered while Cole Hamels turned in a quality start for his sixth win of the year. Reds' starter Bronson Arroyo was pounded for nine runs and 10 hits in 2 2/3 innings.

Tonight featured the much anticipated return of Chase Utley to the Phillies lineup after the 2B had the first 46 games of the year. Utley was greeted with a huge ovation by the 45,841 fans who showed up, which was the largest regular season crowd in Citizens' Bank Park history. While he did do some nice things in the field, Utley looked predictably rusty at the plate going 0-5. He was the only starter to not get a hit.

Considering Utley had no spring training and got only limited at bats in Clearwater over the past few weeks, it will clearly take him some time to get back in the groove. Still, it was good seeing #26 out there at second base and while we can't assume Utley was the reason, there certainly was an extra energy around the team this evening.

The Phillies hold a two game lead in the NL East and could tie the Indians for the most wins in baseball if the Red Sox hold on to their 2-1 lead tonight. Vance Worley will face Johny Cueto tomorrow evening as the Phils take on the Reds in game two of their four game set.

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