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Recap: Phillies Take Series Opener From Giants

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) – Roy Oswalt pitched seven solid innings and Jimmy Rollins drove in three runs, as Chase Utley and the Philadelphia Phillies downed the San Francisco Giants, 9-3, in the opener of an important three-game series at Citizens Bank Park.

Oswalt (8-13) allowed three runs on six hits with seven strikeouts for the Phillies, who have won three straight and five of their last six games overall. With the victory, Philadelphia gained sole possession of first place in the NL wild card race, one game ahead of the Giants.

Utley returned the lineup after he’d been out of action since late June with a thumb injury and finished hitless in five at-bats. Placido Polanco finished 4- for-5 while Carlos Ruiz and Shane Victorino both hit a two-run double in the win.

Barry Zito lost his third straight decision after he was charged with four runs on eight hits for the Giants, who have dropped three of their last four games. Zito (8-7) lasted five-plus innings and did not record a strikeout.

San Francisco left fielder Pat Burrell hit a home run in his return to Philadelphia. Burrell played nine years with the Phillies and his final season with the club was 2008, when Philadelphia won the World Series.

Jose Guillen, who was acquired from Kansas City on Friday, hit his first home run with the Giants.

The visitors scored twice in the first inning for an early lead. Andres Torres led off with a double to right field and moved to third when Buster Posey followed with a base hit. Aubrey Huff then grounded into a 4-6-3 double play, but Torres crossed the plate on the play. Burrell then belted a changeup into the seats in left field for a two-run lead.

The Phillies tied the score in the bottom of the fifth. Mike Sweeney began the stanza with a single up the middle and Ruiz drew a one-out walk. After Oswalt bunted both runners ahead one base, Rollins lifted a single into left-center field to drive them in.

Polanco started the home sixth with a single and Jayson Werth doubled to put runners on second and third. Victorino was next to the plate and his two-run double to left-center field gave Philly a 4-2 advantage and chased Zito from the mound.

Guillen’s one-out solo homer in the seventh drew the Giants within one.

Ryan Madson pitched a scoreless eighth and the Phils added five insurance runs in the bottom of the frame. Victorino singled leading off and stole second before a walk to Sweeney and a single by Raul Ibanez loaded the bases.

Ruiz then followed with a two-run double that bounced off the wall in left field and the hosts led, 6-3. Rollins’ base hit to right field scored Ibanez and when relief pitcher Ramon Ramirez balked, Ruiz was granted home plate. The scoring was capped when Rollins came home on a throwing error during an Utley grounder.

Game Notes

The Giants have lost five of their last six road games…Philly has won 19 of its last 24 games overall and also 16 of the last 18 at home…Giants manager Bruce Bochy was ejected in the eighth inning for arguing the balk call…Chad Durbin pitched the top of the ninth…The scheduled pitching matchup for Wednesday is Joe Blanton against Giants fire-baller Matt Cain…The Phillies outhit the Giants, 13-7…Chris Ray was charged with four runs in the eighth and did not record an out…In his last six games, Burrell has four home runs and 11 RBI.