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Ryan Howard’s second inning home run started a Phillies power surge tonight. (Photo: AP)

Behind the steady pitching of Jonathan Pettibone, and a few home runs from the offense, the Phillies were able to make it two in a row with a 4-1 victory over the hapless Miami Marlins.


In tonight’s Gameday, I predicted Pettibone would pitch through the sixth inning for the first time in his big league career. He did not disappoint. In fact, he turned in what is probably his best start yet. His final line: 6.1, 5 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 3 SO.

Pettibone’s only hiccup came when he allowed a homer to Donovan Solano in the fourth. What was most impressive about his outing was his continued ability to prevent free passes. Coming into tonight’s game, he had walked just two in 10.1 innings pitch. It’s now two in 16.2 innings pitched. Not a bad number at all. The Phils needed Pettibone to be serviceable in place of the injured John Lannan, and he has done just that, turning in quality outings consistently.


Folks, Ryan Howard has begun to heat up. After a porous start where he didn’t hit much of anything, Howard had been marred in a stretch where he seemingly couldn’t hit anything but singles. That was before this current nine-game stretch. After his second inning home run to make it 1-0, Howard has now hit four homers and four doubles, including one tonight, in his last nine games. During that stretch, he was slugging .714. And that was before his two extra base hits in tonight’s game.

Chase Utley would keep the phone going when he lead off the third with another dinger, his sixth of the season.

As for Domonic Brown, he homered for the second time in two nights. Coming into tonight Brown had hit .353/.378/.588 with two homers and two homers in nine games. The sudden jolt of power in the middle of the lineup is a welcome sign for this Phillies club.

The Phils would tack on another run in the second in what may be the least probable scenario we’ll see all season. After Carlos Ruiz singled and stole second, Ben Revere, batting in the eight hole, drove him home with a liner to right to snap a 4-for-25 stretch. Revere would go 1-for-4 on the night, so he still continues to struggle.


In relief of Pettibone, Antonio Bastardo‘s command issues–something that has been an on again, off again issue for him throughout his career–once again reared their ugly head when he walked the first two hitters he faced to load the bases. He’d come back with the dominant stuff we know and love, however, striking out two hitters in a row to end the inning without any damage.

After a scoreless eighth and ninth, the Phils had themselves another victory. Enjoy your Friday night!


The Phillies look to keep the win streak going tomorrow when Cole Hamels  (1-3, 4.78) takes on Jose Fernandez (0-2, 4.50).

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