After Andre Ethier hit a first inning home run off Cole Hamels in the 1st inning, the Phillies were given notice, LA was here to play. But just like a heavyweight fighter, going toe to toe Jayson Werth blasted a three run opposite field monster blast in the first inning off Vicente Padilla, replying to the challenge, by saying, we’re ready, bring it on.
In the 2nd James Loney leading off knocked one over the rightfield wall to bring it to a one run ballgame. Before Philadelphia batted in the bottom of the frame, Craig Sager commented how pitching coach Rick Honeycutt instructed Padilla to stay on top of his pitches, the first batter for the Phighting Phils Pedro Feliz hit one out to right, extending it back to a 2 run lead.
The Phillies pushed their lead to 6-3 in the bottom of the 4th scoring two runs. A leadoff single to left by Werth, followed by a run scoring double to right by Raul Ibanez, and that was all for Padilla. Ramon Troncoso was brought in to pitch for the Dodgers, getting Feliz to ground to 3rd, Ibanez stays at 2nd, Carlos Ruiz walks, and Hamels sacrifices both runners up on a 3-2 bunt. Troncoso then hits JRoll & Shane Victorino with pitches, the 2nd one with the bases loaded, driving in a run.
Cole Hamels was getting cold, not pitching for 27 minutes, although two runs were added to the lead. Pinch hitter Orlando Hudson ripped a one out homer off Hamels inside the leftfield foul pole to cut it to a 6-4 game in the top of the 5th, and when Rafael Furcal doubled to left, that was all for Cole, no win for him tonite in the clinching game. Ronnie Belliard worked reliever J.A. Happ for a walk, then retired Ethier, and that was all for Happ, as Chad Durbin was called on to face Manny Ramirez. Durbin jammed Manny, Ramirez hit a soft comebacker, and the Phillies were out of the jam, three pitchers worked the 5th, Charlie Manuel threw the book out the window, and took control of the ballgame. I’ve given the West Virginian stuff, but he showed his stuff.
In the bottom of the 6th off Clayton Kershaw, Jimmy Rollins was hit by a pitch for the second consecutive at bat, and Victorino took the youngster deep for a two run blast, 8-3 after six. Hong-Chih Kuo was brought on to pitch the 7th, Werth caught up with a low fastball and drove it over the wall for his 2nd homer of the ballgame, 9-3 Phils.
LA had some fight left, Belliard & Ethier opened with 8th inning base knocks, off Chan Ho Park. Into the mix came Ryan Madson to face Manny, Ramirez walked, Matt Kemp played peggy move up, moving everybody up one with a single. Pitching coach Rich Dubee came out to settle down Madson, as Loney stepped in. Whatever Dubee said seemed to work as Ryan got Loney on a popout, struckout Russell Martin, and got Casey Blake to ground into a force play short to second, with Jim Thome waiting to bat in the ondeck circle. Question, Joe Torre, why not pinch hit Thome for Martin? If Thome gets one, it’s a 9-8 game, pressure on, anything can happen. Instead 9-4 into the bottom of the eighth.
Ronald Belisario works the bottom of the 8th, getting the 1st two hitters before JRoll singles & Victorino doubles off a Phan’s hand, reaching over the rail in right, the umpires didn’t allow Rollins to score, although they could have, Charlie Manuel thought Jimmy should’ve been allowed to score, came out to discuss it, Chip Caray & the Chipettes thought Charlie was arguing the non-homer call, they need to get their heads into the game. Phillies up 10-4, three outs to go, and then no more TBS, I’m sure that’s what fans across the country were thinking.
Closer Brad Lidge works a perfect 9th, looks sharp, Ryan Howard is the NLCS MVP, the Phillies are going back to the World Series, trying to repeat, this Philadelphia Phillies team looks like a tight group, out there having fun, playing a little baseball.