Phillies Enter All-Star Break With a Bang
It seems to be feast or famine with this Phillies team lately. Saturday, Cliff Lee homered for the only Phillies run of the game. Sunday, the offense exploded to the tune of 14 runs behind pitcher Cole Hamels.
It was evident early in this game that Hamels was on top of his game. Over eight innings, Hamels allowed only one run on three hits and struck out six Braves. His command was spot-on and the Braves looked a bit silly swinging at his pitches.
This was also a huge game for many Phillies batters as well. Raul Ibanez, who struggled most of the first half, led the offense today with six RBI on two hits, including a three run homer. He also made several great plays in the outfield, including a home-run saving catch in the eighth.
John Mayberry Jr. also found his swing against Derek Lowe and the Braves bullpen. His three hits were all doubles and he collected four RBI as well. Mayberry also made some nice plays in center field.
For Michael Martinez, it was a career day. There has been much debate over the Phillies keeping this Rule-5 utility player on the roster this year as he has not been productive. Today, he earned the job with four hits, a career high. Martinez also showed heart and hustle when he flipped over the Braves dugout railing catching a foul ball.
It seems a little playing time was all Martinez and Mayberry needed to get them going. And thanks to a ton of Phillies injuries, they are getting that time.
The Phillies went on to wipe the floor with the Braves in a 14-1 win, matching their biggest run total of the year and racking up 20 hits, a season high. They maintain the best record in all of baseball at 57-34 to enter the All-Star break.
Before the game today, the Phillies All-Stars were handed their All-Star jersey’s and Shane Victorino thanked a fan who voted for him over 10,000 times in the final vote. I am guessing they later awarded him with a tee-shirt that said, “I have no life.” 10,000 votes? I love Shane, but please, someone give this man a real job.
Both Victorino and Placido Polanco will go to Arizona, but due to their injuries, neither will play in the All-Star game. Hamels will also not pitch because he started today.
Here is the full Photo Album from the Sunday game.
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Photos by Jenn Zambri Photography