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Burnett, Rivera Stifle Phillies as Yankees Tie Series

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Phillies starter Pedro Martinez provided a quality six inning performance in Thursday’s game 2 giving up 3 runs on 6 hits, 2 of those hits being solo homers, but the offense which grabbed control of game 1 in the late innings, was largely shut down by Yankees starter A.J. Burnett, who went seven innings giving up 1 run on 4 hits, and future Hall of Fame closer  Mariano Rivera.  In the 3 situations where the Phillies threatened against Burnett and Rivera, they couldn’t buy that clutch RBI hit as Burnett and Rivera stifled the Phillies by a 3-1 score as the Yankees knotted the Series at a game apiece.
As in game 1, the Phillies hit the scoreboard first with a run in the second after Pedro made short work of the Yankees in the first inning.
In that first inning, Martinez struck out both
Derek Jeter, the 1st of 3 times Jeter went down on strikes in the game, and leftfielder Johnny Damon before getting 1st baseman Mark Teixeira to pop out to shortstop on a 2-2 pitch.

Burnett retired the first 5 Phillies he faced, 2 on strikeouts, before leftfielder Raul Ibanez pounded a 2 out ground-rule double to leftfield.  DH lefthanded hitting Matt Stairs followed with a single to leftfield scoring Ibanez with the Phils’ only run.  Burnett struck out 3rd baseman Pedro Feliz to end the inning.

Rightfielder Jayson Werth led off the third inning with a single to rightfield but was picked-off of 1st base by Burnett with Ibanez at the plate.  The Yankee starter struck out Ibanez and Stairs, first pitch swinging, lined out to leftfield to end the inning.

The 1-0 Phillies lead held up until Teixeira blistered Martinez’s 2nd pitch of the fourth inning out to right centerfield to knot the game at 1-1.

In the fifth, catcher Carlos Ruiz stroked Burnett’s 2-2 pitch to leftfield for a double but was stranded as shortstop Jimmy Rollins struck out and centerfielder Shane Victorino popped out to 3rd base to end the inning.

Burnett went clean on the Phils in the sixth inning as 1st baseman Ryan Howard struck out for the 3rd time in the game.  Howard fanned in all 4 plate appearances.

Martinez looked as if cruising striking out Teixeira and 3rd baseman  Alex Rodriguez to open the the Yankees’ sixth.  A-Rod would fan 3 times in the game, both he and Jeter would account for 5 of Pedro’s 8 strikeouts.  But with a 1-2 count, DH Hideki Matsui reached Martinez for a solo shot to rightfield giving the Yanks a 2-1 lead.

In the Phillies seventh, Burnett was, by now, cruising going clean on the Phillies fanning 2 and coaxing Feliz into a groundout. 

Martinez was chased in the seventh after giving up singles to the first 2 Yankee hitters he faced and was relieved by Chan Ho Park and then by lefthander Scott Eyre as the Yanks’ pinch hitter and catcher Jorge Posada singled to center to drive-in the Yankees’ 3rd and final run which was charged to Martinez.

Pedro provided an impressive effort throwing 107 pitches in six-
plus innings walking 2 and striking out 8 while giving up the 2 homers and giving up the 3 runs on 6 hits in a losing cause.

The Phillies Nation blog sums up Martinez’s effort:

When Charlie Manuel announced that Pedro Martinez would get the nod in New York, the script was written, it was just waiting to be performed.

All of the hype surrounding Martinez’s return to New York and “Who’s Your Daddy,” and what not, Pedro came out unfazed. He made two mistakes that were rightly hammered for long-balls. However, everywhere Martinez goes, a show is sure to follow. For six innings, Phillies fans got exactly that.

Winning pitcher Burnett went seven innings giving up 1 run on 4 hits while walking 2, striking out 9 and largely baffling Phillies hitters.

Yankee manager Girardi, seeing Burnett’s pitch count at 108 after seven innings, didn’t mess with middle relief or set-up and went right to closer Rivera to start the eighth inning.  After getting Ruiz to ground out to 3rd base, Rollins battled Rivera for an 11 pitch at-bat finally drawing a walk.   Victorino followed touching Rivera for a single to rightfield — runners on 1st and 2nd base.  But 2nd baseman Chase Utley, silent in game 2 after a 2 homer game 1, grounded Rivera’s full-count pitch into an inning-ending doubleplay.

The Phillies brought on reliever Ryan Madson who had an impressive ninth inning only giving up a single to 2nd baseman Robinson Cano while striking out the side: A-Rod, Matsui and late-game centerfield replacement Brett Gardner.

Ibanez, the only Phil with any production at the plate, stroked his 2nd double of the game with 2 outs in the ninth. But Rivera went to a 2-2 count on Matt Stairs before fanning him to end the game.

Just how unproductive was the Phillies’ offense?  The first 5 hitters went a collective 2 for 17 with 3 walks while fanning 6 times.  4 of strikeouts were on Howard.

Both teams have Friday off and resume play on Saturday at Citizen’s Bank Park as the Phils look to jump-start their offense and to jump ahead of the Yankees in another battle of lefties as Cole Hamels is opposed by Andy Pettitte.

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