Braves Beat Phillies, Take Series 2-1

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Phillies Comeback Falls Short Against Braves, Jurrjens

The Phillies continue to get baffled by mediocre pitching. Jair Jurrjens has owned them for his career, dropping his ERA to under 2.50 in his 10 starts against these Phils. He went 6.1 innings, giving up just one run to this potent lineup.

Cole Hamels was probably better, striking out 9 over 7 frames but because of two home run balls (one by Freddie Freeman, one by Alex Gonzalez), he left the game down 3-1 and got tagged with the loss, his second of the season. His off-speed pitches had great break on them and owned the meat of the Braves order all night. Tough loss for Cole because he did pitch so well.

Placido Polanco was responsible for both Phillies runs in the game and had a chance to tie it up with 2 on and 2 outs in the 9th, but against Craig Kimbrel he popped up to end the game. Polly finished 2-5 to bring his average up to a team-leading .366.

The Phillies lost the series 2-1, scoring just 5 runs in the three games combined. That won’t cut it. The good news is Chase Utley is hammering the ball down in Extended Spring Training and Domonic Brown has been mashing at Lehigh Valley. Dom is closer to coming back and with the 0-14 streak Ben Francisco is running with, they’ll need him pretty soon.

Next up for the Phils are the Marlins away. They still lead the NL with a 22-11 record, though the Fish are close behind.

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Phillies Spoil Julio Teheran's Debut, Shut Out Braves 3-0

Ryan Howard moved into second place on the Phillies all time home run list with a 4th inning blast as the Fightins shut out the Braves 3-0. Kyle Kendrick threw five scoreless innings, besting Braves uber prospect Julio Teheran in his debut. Teheran, ranked as one of the top 10 prospects in baseball, struggled through 4 2/3 innings allowing three runs and two walks.

The rookie threw 86 pitches before chased in the fifth following a Shane Victorino triple that scored Jimmy Rollins.

While all eyes were on Teheran, it was Kyle Kendrick who somewhat stole the show. Kendrick allowed only two hits and struck three over five innings. He was pulled after he hit the 70 pitch count the Phillies had put on him.

Ryan Howard passed Del Ennis for second on the all time Phillies HR list with his 260th career shot. Mike Schmidt holds the franchise record with 548.

This was the Phillies sixth shut out of the season and sets up the rubber game between Cole Hamels and Jair Jurrens tomorrow night at 8pm on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball.

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Cliff Lee Strikes Out 16, But Phillies Shut Out By Braves 5-0

Cliff Lee matched the all time record for strikeouts in a game by a lefthander with 16, but it was not enough as the Derek Lowe and the Braves shut out the Phillies 5-0 to take the opener of the series at Citizens Bank Park.

Lowe actually carried a no hitter into the seventh inning, but appeared to injure himself during Shane Victorino’s at bat. After getting two strikes on the Phillies centerfielder, he limped off the mound in some sort of pain. He did not leave the game however, and promptly gave up two hits the Victorino and Polanco before Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez pulled him. Should Lowe end up on the DL from whatever it was, his performance could end as a Pyrrhic victory for Atlanta.

Despite k’ing 16, Lee was not without his struggles giving up nine hits and three runs over 7 innings. Still, you can’t say he was the problem tonight. As has been the case too often this season, the bats just went silent. Ryan Howard had a particularly rough night going 0-for-3 with three strikeouts and leaving three men on base.

It was the sixth straight win for the Braves who will send Jair Jurrens to the mound tomorrow night to face Kyle Kendrick.

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