Tonight's game really looked like a pitchers' duel. Eric Stults went seven innings and allowed just two runs. Cliff Lee looked to have the Padres offense figured out, giving up eight hits and one walk while striking out seven in eight innings and change. It was that change that gave him trouble though. Kyle Blanks made the Phillies pay, going 4 for 5 with 3 RBI and the game-tying run. If you didn't watch this one, you missed a doozy.
The Phillies got on the board early. With two outs, John Mayberry, who reached first on a fielder's choice, stole second and then scored on a single from Carlos Ruiz. Mayberry and Ruiz put it together again in the fifth inning, as a double and a single put runners on the corners with one out. Mayberry scored again on Jimmy Rollins's sacrifice fly. That was all Eric Stults would allow, but the same couldn't be said for the bullpen. Tommy Layne took the mound in the top of the eighth... and then promptly served up a homer to Chase Utley. Layne was promptly pulled.
Lee came out to finish things off in the ninth, but the Padres would not go gentle into that good night. Carlos Quentin hit a leadoff single, and then Chase Headley chased Lee right out of the game with a double down the left field line. With no outs and the tying run at the plate, Charlie Manuel brought in Jonathan Papelbon to finish things off. Blanks had other plans, driving in Quentin and Headley with a single on the first pitch.
Blanks moved into scoring position when Papelbon went a little too far inside on Jesus Guzman and clipped his jersey. The Phillies looked like they were still going to win it when Yasmani Grandal grounded into a double play, but then Ruiz let a pitch get away from him and Blanks scored the tying run. Watch these Phillies fans realize their world is crumbling around them:
After all that excitement, Mark Kotsay walked, but Alexi Amarista's fly out would send the game into extras.
Luke Gregerson got the call in the 10th, and immediately made things interesting by giving up a single to Rollins. Then Utley hit a fly ball deep to center. Chris Denorfia caught it on the warning track... and then dropped it on the transfer, allowing Rollins to reach third with one out. Gregerson came through big time by striking out Michael Young before Joe Thatcher came in to retire Domonic Brown to wrap up the inning.
Justin De Fratus took the mound for the Phillies in the bottom of the 10th and quickly retired Logan Forsythe. Then he walked Denorfia, and beaned Quentin, bringing Headley to the plate. Chase put together a phenomenal plate appearance, nearly going yard twice before drawing a walk on the eighth pitch. That brought the 88 Train back to the plate, and he really doesn't want to ride the rails back to Tuscon. He ripped one down the third base line, picking up his second career walkoff hit. This win puts the Padres into a tie for second place with the Rockies, just three games back of Arizona.
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