Phillies 2nd baseman Chase Utley, 1st baseman Ryan Howard and catcher Chris Coste all homered to support Brett Myers who bounced off of the first inning ropes to hold Florida scoreless for the next 7 innings as the Phils routed the Marlins by a 12-3 score on Friday.
The win extended the Phillies winning streak to 5 games, a streak during which they have outscored their opponents by a 60-13 margin. By winning, the Phils also took over 1st place in the NL East as Florida dropped to 1/2 game out with Atlanta and the Mets, who both lost, remaining in 3rd and 4th place respectively 2 1/2 and 4 1/2 games behind the red pin-strippers.
With hip tightness and a reliever warming up in the first inning, Myers seemed on his way to an early exit as Florida loaded the bases with none out and scored 3 runs out of the starting blocks. AP sports writer Rob Maaddi describes Myers’ predicament and turn-around;
The crowd was booing and Myers didn’t feel right.
Myers, the Phillies’ opening-day starter, hadn’t won since beating Houston on April 17. He lost his previous five decisions.
Myers got better the longer he pitched. He struck out the side in the eighth and fanned five of the last six batters he faced.
“That little bit of a grin was back for Brett,” Coste said. “You can see that look in a guy’s eyes when they know they’re doing well.”
After the first, the Marlins could do nothing with Myers the rest of the way as he only permitted 4 more base runners from the second through the eighth innings. The Marlins had runners on 1st and 2nd with two out in the third inning. But Myers struck out catcher Matt Treanor to retire the side. Myers fanned 11 while walking 3 during his eight innings of work to earn his 3rd win against 6 losses.
Meanwhile, the Phils bludgeoned 6′9″ 34 year old lefthander Mark Hendrickson for 10 runs in 3 2/3 innings to drop his record to 7-3 for the season.
The Phils rung Hendrickson up for 7 runs in the second inning as 10 hitters came to the plate. Coste pounded a one out 3 run homer to left centerfield. After rightfielder So Taguchi singled and Myers was walked, centerfielder Shane Victorino slammed a 2 out 2 run double to centerfield. Utley followed with his MLB leading 18th homer, a 2 run shot to rightfield to put the Phils up 7-3. To view the play-by-play of the big inning, click here.
The Phils added 4 more runs in the fourth inning off of Hendrickson and a reliever. AP’s Maaddi describes the inning;
Jimmy Rollins had a bloop RBI single in the fourth and [after Utley singled] Howard greeted reliever Burke Badenhop with an opposite-field drive off the left-field foul pole to give the Phillies an 11-3 lead.
The Phils capped their scoring in the seventh inning off of both lefthanded reliever Taylor Tankersley and Justin Miller as Miller forced in a run by walking Taguchi in a bases loaded 2 out situation.
Reliever Clay Condrey pitched a 3-up, 3-down ninth striking out 2 Marlins to seal the win.
For all of the scores, boxscores and recaps on Friday’s games, click here.
After the Marlins, the Cincinnati Reds come to town for 3 games starting next Monday.
For the scores, boxscores and recaps on Saturday’s games, click here.