Thanks for showing up: Phils blast their way past Dodgers 8-4

By STEPHEN WILDMAN
Staff Writer — swildman@highhopesblog.com

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Ryan Howard's struggles have certainly been well documented, but with a powerful homerun to left-center last night, the slugger could be on the rebound. (AP Photo)

It’s been a long time since the Phillies won a game with their offense.  With Kyle Kendrick (9-7) on the mound last night, they sure picked a good time to show up.  After all, they’ve scored two or less runs in 8 out of their last 12 games, over which they have a 5-7 record.

Ryan Howard and Brian Schneider each hit three run homeruns in the Phillies 8-4 win over the L.A. Dodgers, and Carlos Ruiz added two runs on a pinch-hit single.  It was Howard’s first homerun since July 27th.  Placido Polanco and Chase Utley went a combined 4 hits in 9 at-bats.

Kendrick gave up 4 runs on 7 hits over his five innings of work.  It didn’t look good for Kyle early on, after he issued a walk to Dodgers 1st baseman James Loney with the bases loaded, giving L.A. a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning.  He was able to limit the damage, however, by coaxing Casey Blake into an inning-ending double play.  Kendrick also allowed a run in the bottom of the 5th on a fielder’s choice grounder by Jamey Carroll.  He was pulled in the in the sixth after a two-run homer by Loney cut the Phillies lead to 6-4 at the time.

One rotation that’s been pretty solid over the past few weeks is the combination of Chad Durbin, J.C. Romero, Ryan Madson, and Brad Lidge to close out ball games.  Those four combined to give up only one hit over the last four innings last night.

Seeing some “crooked numbers” on the scoreboard was certainly a welcome sight.  Hopefully, they can keep it going this afternoon when Roy Oswalt goes against Clayton Kershaw in the series finale.  Kershaw pitched a few weeks ago in Philadelphia, going 6.2 innings and allowing 2 earned runs.

Despite the good news from an offensive stand point, the Phils did not gain any ground with last night’s win.  The Atlanta Braves smashed the NY Mets again 9-2, and the San Francisco Giants beat the Colorado Rockies 5-2.  Atlanta still holds a 3 game lead over the Phillies in the NL East Division standings, and the Phils are still 1.5 games up over the Giants in the Wildcard.

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Filed under game recap, Steve Wildman

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