Results tagged ‘ Dane Sardinha ’
The Phillies scored only 22 runs in the latter half of May, from the 18th to the 31st. But in the last 4 games, the Phillies have exploded to the tune of 31 runs. Today against the Twins, they scored 9 runs, had a 5-run lead in the 8th inning, and still lost the game.
The Phillies hit five home runs in the game. Here is a recap of the first four: The usual suspects, Ryan Howard and Werth, nailed two of those homers. Not as common was a blast from Raul Ibanez, who was on base three times. Even less common was a homer from Wilson Valdez, who had his only other big league homer in 2006. Yes, 4 years ago. If Valdez can smack a homer, then the stars must really be aligning for the Phillies, right? Maybe not…
Cole Hamels got off to a bad start in the first inning, giving up 3 runs. A passed ball by catcher Brian Schneider and a bad throw to second by Hamels added fuel to the fire. But the offense immediately picked Hamels back up by getting those 3 runs right back in the bottom of the inning. Chase Utley led the way with a 2-run triple and Jayson Werth hit a sac fly to score Utley.
Every starter in the game, including Hamels, had at least one hit today. On the mound, Hamels later allowed a solo home run to Justin Morneau and ended the day with 4 runs allowed over 7 innings. If you forget about the first inning mishap, Hamels had a great day.
But, as has been a common story line this year, the Phillies bullpen blew a FIVE run lead. In the 9th inning, former-Phil, Jim Thome hit a 2-run homer off Jose Contreras. As it was then a save situation, Brad Lidge was brought into the game. And Lidge proceeded to blow the save and the remaining 3-run lead. He gave up an RBI-single and a 2-run homer to Twins catcher, Joe Mauer.
With a 9-9 tied game in the bottom of the 9th, the Phils got 2 hits but still failed to score and win the game. Howard and Werth both struck out. Chad Durbin came in for the 10th inning and as soon as I saw him on the mound, I thought, “Oh crap, he is going to give up a homer to the first batter.” Why do I think this? Because he has done it many times in the exact same situation. How many times, I do not know except to say that I have nightmares about it. Sure enough, 1st batter: homer.
The inning ended with a tag out at the plate, which normally would have been very exciting. But at that point, who cares? The Phillies are losing 9-10 with the bottom of the batting order coming up. Do you think Valdez can hit his 3rd homer in 4 years to win the game? No? Neither do I…
Valdez did not get a chance. Greg Dobbs popped out, Schneider grounded out and Ross Gload pinch hit for Valdez. Now, Gload did a homer with 2 outs to tie the game again. But again, no need to get excited because Danys Baez was going to pitch the 11th inning. Baez has been awful and today did not change that. He gave up THREE runs in the 11th just to make sure the Phillies had NO chance at a win.
The Phillies went down in the 11th. It was a pathetic end to a pathetic loss. The final score was 10-13 and the Phils now have one game left against the Twins. If Roy Halladay can get back on his game after allowing 6 runs in his last outing, the Phils could maybe salvage a series win. Game time is 1:35pm and I will return with photos.
In other news, Carlos Ruiz will get a few days off after being nailed in the head with a broken bat while behind the plate yesterday. He will not need a trip to the DL, which is great news. Scott Mathieson was designated for assignment to make room for catcher Dane Sardinha who will back-up Schneider until Ruiz is healthy.
Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography
Jamie Moyer and Kyle Kendrick are making the competition for the 5th starters spot a bit complicated. Both have performed well. And yesterday against the Orioles in his first “A” game start, Moyer made the decision even more complex by pitching 5 innings of one run ball. If the race remains close throughout the next few weeks, odds are that Moyer will get the nod based on experience and payroll and Kendrick will begin the year in the pen. But, as happened with Chan Ho Park and JA Happ last season, the roles could be flipped if Moyer falters.
Then today against the Yankees, Cole Hamels ran into a few complications of his own. Hamels has pitched well this spring…that is, until today. Giving up 6 earned runs over just 4 innings, Hamels got spanked by the Yanks. That brings his spring ERA to 4.91, which is not too awful. Plus, these games do not count anyway. Should we be worried about Hamels after one bad outing? Probably not. If it stretches into 2 or 3 bad outings, then we’ll talk.
What is not so complicated now is the Opening Day pitching roster. Having sent lefty Mike Zagurski to the minors, there are exactly 12 healthy pitchers remaining: Starters Roy Halladay, Hamels, Joe Blanton, J.A. Happ and Kendrick or Moyer. The pen will be Ryan Madson, Danys Baez, Chad Durbin, Jose Contreras, David Herndon, Antonio Bastardo and then either Kendrick or Moyer. If the Phillies pick up another piece along the way, this can change, but odds are this will be the pitching staff. Of course, once Brad Lidge and JC Romero are ready, more changes will be made.
On the offensive end, there was an odd standout performance today. Hawaiian born 3rd/4th string catcher, Dane Sardinha, previously of the Tigers, went 2 for 4 against the Yankees with 4 RBI on a 3-run double and a solo homer. The unlikely performance came from a guy who hit .097 with the Tigers in 2009 and was arrested for a DUI in Clearwater, FL last month. Like Tiger Woods, I suppose he is making his case for forgiveness ;o)
Those four runs today helped the Phillies to the 9-7 9th inning comeback win over the Yanks. Wilson Valdez, another non-roster invitee like Sardinha, knocked a 2-run homer for the walk-off win. Next up: Tampa Bay on Tuesday and the Braves on Wednesday…
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Photo by Jenn