Phillies fans must be encouraged after Kyle Kendrick went out and pitched 5.0 solid innings, giving up only two hits on the way to earning the victory. The win moved the Phils magic number to 3. Oh, and they turn to Clifton Phifer Lee tonight to try and knock another off that total and setup a potential division-clinching day on Friday.
In order for the Phillies to clinch the NL East crown on Friday, they need a win tonight against the Marlins, a win tomorrow against the Cardinals, and a Braves loss tomorrow night against the Mets in a game that starts at 7:35.
Today's 3-1 Victory
After Kendrick flirted with a no-no for four innings, Logan Morrison blasted a homer, but it was the only real damage done against KK.
Stutes pitched two solid scoreless innings, but Bastardo didn't look particularly sharp, walking a batter and giving up a hit while recording only one out in the eighth.
Is Bastardo's slight loss of velocity and recent stumbles a situation worth worrying about?
"We gotta get him back out there just like today, and get him throwing the ball good again. We've got time. I think he'll be all right. I feel confident he's going to be okay," Charlie Manuel said of Bastardo following the game.
Madson gave up a pair of hits in the ninth, but it never really felt like he didn't have control of the victory.
As for the scoring, Hunter Pence scored Placido Polanco to put the Phils up early and Raul later plated Pence with a double off the wall. Ten straight years for 30 doubles or more for Raul. Quite a feat.
The highlight of the game for me was clearly Pete Orr's defensive prowess. Woo, Pete Orr! And Raul Ibanez actually threw a guy out at the plate late in the game. A rare sight.
Tonight's 7:35 Game
You've got to feel good about having Cliff Lee 16-7, 2.44) take the hill against green right-hander Alex Sanabia (0-0, 0.00). Lee's been a Cy Young pitcher the past few months and on a stretch as good as we've ever seen.
We'll update the post with tonight's lineup when it's posted, but look for Chase Utley to get a start. He came in to pinch hit tonight and ripped a single up the middle.
7:35 start time for game two.