Phillies Nation


Wagner Has the Last Laugh on Tuesday

The Phils lost a heartbreaker last night to the Mets by a score of 9-7.  It was a wild one which featured eight homers all combined and culminated in Billy Wagner’s first save in Philly since he left for the Mets’ money. 

Ryan Madson started for the Phils and pitched decently for the first five innings.  In the third though, he took some notes out of the Ryan Franklin school of pitching and gave up back-to-back home runs to Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado.  I just realized they are both named Carlos, so I’ve asked Jayson Stark to send us some useless information on when the last time two guys with the same first name went back-to-back.  I’ll let you know what he says.  Anyway they were his only big mistakes in an otherwise good outing early on – only one walk.  Once the sixth inning hit, though, there was trouble.  But before that, things were looking up for the good guys.

Rollins, Rowand, and Abreu connected on long balls themselves and Dellucci hit a 3-run shot later in the game as well.  This included a leadoff homer by JRoll extending his Phillies record (16) in that category as well as a second one to tie the game at 4 in the fifth inning.  It was also the first time in Jimmy’s career he hit two homers in a single game and it appeared to put the Mets on the ropes.

It was at this point that Tom Glavine’s streak of 27 consecutive starts lasting at least six innings ended.  He had thrown 110 pitches and just walked the bases loaded after a double by Chase Utley when Mets Manager Willie Randolph yanked him in favor of Chad Bradford.  Despite the chance to improve on the dismal RISP stats, Rowand popped up on the first pitch he saw and David Bell grounded out to quickly end the threat.  This was precisely where the Phillies had to break the game open because with the way the ball was flying out of the park the Phils could ill afford a close game. 

Sure enough, the next pitch from Ryan Madson to David Wright in the top of the sixth left the park and the Mets regained the lead and momentum.  This was then parlayed into a double, a bunt single (actually scored a sacrifice with an error charged to Ryan Howard – his ninth of the season), and a hit-by-pitch to chase Madson.  Brian Sanches came on to pitch to the ageless wonder, Julio Franco, and got him to line out to Utley, but the relay to double off the runner at first went wide and allowed the Mets sixth run to score.  A infield single brought another run in.  Two more runs crossed home thanks to an error by David Bell and with the score now at 9-4, the Phillies learned first hand why the Mets are a better team.  Besides the Phils practically giving the game away with three errors in the inning, the point was demonstrated as both teams were faced with the same opportunity in consecutive half-innings and yet only the Mets took advantage.  That said, the Phils are 2.5 games back in the wild card standings; but before we start that campaign, remember what your disgruntled Uncle Charlie said, "I’m not here to win no damn wild card."

In other news, left-hander Randy Wolf was struck in his pitching hand by line drive last night while working a rehab assignment in Clearwater.  X-rays turned out to be negative and he will continue his rehab as scheduled with the goal to rejoin the club before the all-star break.

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