After losing their last six games, the Phillies (25-34) completed a shut out of the Reds (27-32).They sent ace Cole Hamels (2-3 3.49 ERA) to the hill. Hamels had yet to have a game where he absolutely dominated the opposing offense since coming off the DL until tonight. Going 7.2 innings, he only allowed five hits and two walks. Hamels was opposed by Reds ace, Johnny Cueto (5-5 1.97 ERA). Cueto, who having a career year, went a season low five innings, giving up four runs on six hits, including a home run by Jimmy Rollins.
The Game: After only two hits combined through the first three innings, the Phillies finally broke through. With one out, Chase Utley was hit by a pitch, only to be erased by Johnny Cueto picking him off first base. However, Howard worked a walk and Marlon Byrd was hit by pitch to give the Phillies life. Domonic Brown then came up in the clutch, hitting a two-run double down the left field line. John Mayberry followed with a single to extend the Phillies lead to 3-0.
With one out in the fifth, Jimmy Rollins connected on a ball for his seventh home run of the season to add to the Phillies lead. 4-0 Phillies.
With a four run lead heading into the top of the ninth, the Phillies were looking to seal the deal. Ben Revere led off with a pinch-hit single for Mike Adams, then stole second. Jimmy Rollins worked a walk, and Ruiz singled to load the bases. Utley then hit a sac fly to bring Ryan Howard up. With Howard at the plate, Reds pitcher Sam LeCure threw a wild pitch to move Rollins and Ruiz up to second and third. Howard capitalized with a sharp ground ball under the glove of first baseman, Todd Frazier, allowing the Phillies to score two more runs. But it didn’t stop there, Byrd followed Howard with a double and Domonic Brown hit a sac fly to continue to add to the lead. 8-0 Phillies.
After Papelbon has been getting little work as of late, Sandberg called upon his closer to get the final three outs to complete the shut out. Papelbon got all three batters to fly out to close out the game, sealing the 8-0 victory.
Significant Offensive Stats:
Jimmy Rollins: 1-4, 2 R, HR
Carlos Ruiz: 2-5, R
Chase Utley 3-3, RBI
Ryan Howard 1-4, 2 R, RBI
Domonic Brown 1-4, R, 3 RBI
Impact: The Phillies ended their six game losing streak in a big way. It was a very strong all around team win with strong performances coming from the offense, Cole Hamels and the back end of the bullpen. This is the kind of win the Phillies needed and hopefully gives them some confidence.
Up Next: Tomorrow, the Phillies go for the series win over the Reds (4:10 pm CSN). Phillies will send fifth starter, Roberto Hernandez (2-3 4.03 ERA) to the hill. Hernandez took the loss in his last start only going 5.1 innings and giving up five runs to the Mets. The Reds will counter with Alfredo Simon (7-3 3.03 ERA). Simon has pitched very well for the Reds since coming over from Baltimore. In his last start, Simon took the win over the D-Backs giving up three runs on 6.1 innings.
Andrew Shipotofsky is a writer for Philliedelphia. Follow him on Twitter @AShipotofsky