First inning of game #4 BIG Ryan Howard boomed a two run blast over the wall in right, catching up to a fastball & turning it around in a hurry, so much for the lefty lefty matchup, and I thought, “here we go again”.
Things remain the same until the top of the 4th when LA ties the score off Joe Blanton, a walk to Matt Kemp sandwiched between two outs started things off, Manny Ramirez lined a single to left sending Kemp to 3rd, James Loney then singled to right scoring Kemp, Ronnie Belliard draws a base on balls, Russell Martin gets a sharp single to left scoring Manny, then out number three on a Casey Blake groundout to end the scoring, but it’s a brand new ballgame.
The Dodgers take the lead when Kemp rips a two out solo homer off Blanton in the 5th. LA adds to their lead in the 6th when Pedro Feliz commits a throwing error allowing Manny to reach base, after Loney pops out, Belliard pops one up just out of the reach of Jimmy Rollins & Raul Ibanez for a single, Martin strikes out looking, Blake serves a soft single to right scoring Ramirez & Belliard to 3rd, Wolf flies out after Blake steals second, Los Angeles leads by two into the bottom of six.
With one out in the bottom of the 6th Shane Victorino pulls a hard grounder down into the leftfield corner, when Manny airmails the relay throw over the cutoff man’s head Shane flies into 3B with a triple, Chase Utley rips a single to right scoring Victorino, coaches visit, Howard walks, wonder what the coach told Wolf?, pitching change as Ronald Belisario is called on to replace Randy Wolf, facing Jayson Werth. A graphic shows Phillies 1st batters are 0-8 with 3 walks versus LA’s bullpen, here is the crazy talk from Chip Caray, “0 for 8 are the Philadelphia hitters against the first batter faced by these Dodger pensmen”, swear to God, that’s what he said. Now 0 for 10, as Belisario retires Werth on a FC & Hong-Chih Kuo gets Ibanez on a fly to left, Phillies narrow the gap to one after 6.
That’s the way things remained heading into the bottom of the 8th, with two on & 2 out, Jonathan Broxton was called on to replace George Sherrill to get Werth to fly to right to end the threat. With one out in the top of the 9th Rafael Furcal rips a line drive base knock, knocking Scott Eyre out of the game, closer Brad Lidge was brought into the game, Charlie Manuel was thinking (gotta stop ’em here), Furcal steals 2nd & Kemp strikes out, Lidge wild pitches Furcal to thirdbase, but lefthanded batter Andre Ethier (luckily Charlie Manuel must’ve fallen asleep, not replacing his righthanded pitcher with a southpaw to get the lefthanded hitting Ethier, he K’d to send the game to the bottom of the 9th.
Broxton was sitting in the Dodger dugout while LA batted in the top of the 9th, the adrenalin draining from his system as today’s closers are used to going one inning. With one out Matt Stairs was sent up to pinch hit for Pedro Feliz, Stairs homered off Jonathan in the regular season, the relief pitcher was scared shitless & walked Matt, Eric Bruntlett was put in as a pinch runner, Carlos Ruiz was nailed on the elbow with a pitch, tying run on 2nd & winning run on 1st, pinch hitter Greg Dobbs popped out, leaving it all up to JRoll who lined a 1-1 fastball into the right-centerfield gap, driving home the tying & winning runs, Phillies win the game 5-4, and take a 3-1 series lead. In order for the Dodgers to advance they will need to win three straight, highly unlikely.