Thursday, October 23, 2008

Phils Take Game 1

The Phillies took the initiative in Game 1 and took out the upstart Rays by a score of 3 - 2. They lead the World Series by a count of 1 game to none.

The Rays got their nose bloodied early in the first inning, when, with 1 out, Jayson Werth walked, bringing up Chase Utley. Utley took a 2-2 pitch from Scott Kazmir over the right field fence to give the Phillies a 2 - 0 lead.

The Phils added a third run in the 4th inning by virtue of a Carlos Ruiz ground out, scoring Shane Victorino from third.

The Rays, meanwhile, were stifled by Cole Hamels for the most past. Carl Crawford took Hamels deep to make the score 3 - 1 in the bottom of the fourth inning and Akinori Iwamura doubled home Jason Bartlett in the bottom of the fifth to draw within a run. Other than those two threats, however, the Rays didn't really make a lot of noise offensively. Hamels went 7 innings, giving up 2 runs on 5 hits and struck out 5.

The Phillies, meanwhile, seemed to allow Scott Kazmir to pitch in this game far longer than he had any right to. After taking a 2 run lead in the first, the Phils had lead off baserunners in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 6th inning, but failed to get anyone home. The closest the Phils came to getting another run early was squandered in the bottom of the 2nd when Shane Victorino, on third because of an infield single, was thrown out at the plate by BJ Upton on a shallow Jimmy Rollins fly out.

Hamels gave way in the 8th inning to Ryan Madson, who pitched a scoreless 8th inning and later, to Brad Lidge, who closed out matters gaining his 6th save in the post-season.

The series continues tonite with Brett Myers facing James Shields.


- Loved the attempted bunt by Chase Utley in the first. What is with that shift they are playing on Utley? I guarantee he will drop a bunt down the third base line in this series.

- No more Ryan Howard at first base. Please. I can't take it anymore. He. is. TERRIBLE in the field. DH him in the AL ballparks. Whatever. But no more.

- Howard also struck out 3 times and left 4 men on base.

- Jimmy Rollins. 0 for 5. Left 5 guys on base.

- While I'm on the topic, the Phillies batters were responsible for leaving 21 runners on base last night. This game should have been a laugher. Instead, it was a nailbiter that tested both my nerves and my liver.

- Shane Victorino really seemed to get under the Rays' skin on the basepaths.

- What was with the BJ Upton glare while at the plate in the 3rd inning? I particularly enjoyed his two GIDPs.

Picture: by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

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