Philadelphia Phillies: Phorecasting the Phinal Two Months of the Season
The Phillies lead the Giants 2-1 after three innings when the game goes to a rain delay. Jamie Moyer again comes in to relieve Pedro Martinez, pitching five solid innings. Brad Lidge holds onto the lead by the skin of his teeth as the Phillies prevail 5-4. Charlie Manuel decides to split all of Pedro's starts with Moyer for the rest of the season.
Cole Hamels is rocked by the Astros, surrendering seven runs on nine hits in just 3.1 innings in a 10-2 Phillies loss. Afterward he complains to the media that he didn't get his full four days' rest since it was an afternoon game.
In danger of dropping a series opener to the lowly Nationals, the Phillies rally in the ninth inning. The big blow is a home run by Matt Stairs, his first hit in nearly two months. The 10,000 Phillies fans watching in Washington hurl insults at the 500 Nationals fans as Brad Lidge barely hangs on for a 7-6 Phillies win.
Pitching on four days and five hours of rest, Cole Hamels dominates the Mets in a 5-0 Phillies win that stretches their division lead to a season-high 11 games over both the Marlins and Braves. Paul Bako hits for the cycle.
Pedro Martinez starts the first game of a doubleheader versus the Mets but has to be relieved by Jamie Moyer after three innings when the game is delayed by hail. Moyer pitches brilliantly again as the Phillies win 7-3. In the second game, Moyer starts and pitches the first six innings, giving way to Pedro, who posts a three-inning save in the 11-4 victory.
Hosting the Nationals, the Phillies get a scare in the first inning as Chase Utley is hit in the elbow and has to leave the game. Eric Bruntlett replaces him and makes a critical error when he trips over his beard while running to his left to field a ball. The Phillies lose 4-2 but still finish 16-2 against the Nationals in 2009.
The Phillies leave 22 men on base in a 6-5 loss to the Braves and are swept out of Atlanta. The division lead is now six over Atlanta and seven over Florida.
The division lead is trimmed even closer as the Phillies drop a pair of games in Florida. The Phillies fall behind early in both games and Jamie Moyer logs 13 total innings of mop-up duty in 8-2 and 12-5 losses.
The Phillies are swept out of Florida after Brad Lidge blows a save and the Phillies lose 8-5 on a walk-off grand slam by former Phillie-for-a-week Ronny Paulino. The Marlins and Braves are both within four games.
The Phillies finish off a four-game sweep of the Brewers in crunch time for the second straight year, effectively putting away the division. Ryan Howard hits two home runs in the 9-4 win, capping off a series where he hits six home runs, drives in 14 runs, and steals home twice. People around baseball still think he is overrated.
The Phillies lose 7-5 to Houston after another blown save by Brad Lidge. Michael Bourn has four hits and steals three bases for the Astros, as a smug Ed Wade tells the media that he really took advantage of the Phillies in that trade last year.
The Phillies clinch the National League East with an 11-10 win over the Astros. Wanting Lidge to be on the mound for the final out, Charlie Manuel puts him in the game even though the team leads 11-2 entering the ninth inning.
After six hits and three walks, Charlie summons Brett Myers for the final out. He then announces "Brad is still our guy, I just didn't think he had his best stuff today."
After being kicked around in the first two games of the series with the Marlins following the clinching of the division, the Phillies explode for a 19-0 win on the final day of the regular season.
The shutout is a combined effort by J.A. Happ, Jamie Moyer, Pedro Martinez, Chad Durbin, J.C. Romero, Antonio Bastardo, Tyler Walker, Scott Eyre, Andrew Carpenter, Kyle Kendrick, Rodrigo Lopez, Chan Ho Park, Miguel Cairo, and Steven Register. Ryan Howard reaches the 50 home run plateau and Raul Ibanez reaches the 80 RBI mark after being at 79 since Aug. 24.
The Phillies begin their National League Division Series against the Colorado Rockies, winning 4-2 behind Cliff Lee. Lee throws 110 pitches through eight innings but Charlie decides to stick with him for the ninth after a dozen Phillies fans forcibly restrain Brad Lidge to keep him from warming in the bullpen.
The Phillies complete a three-game sweep of Colorado with a thrilling 1-0 victory. Brad Lidge faces just three hitters to record the save. He needs an unassisted triple play to end the game again, but it's still just three hitters.
Jim Thome cranks a three-run home run off Ryan Madson in the bottom of the eighth to lead the Dodgers to a 5-3 win over the Phillies in game one of the NLCS. The Phillies threaten in the ninth, loading the bases with none out, but don't score. Jimmy Rollins pops to short left field on the first pitch of an at-bat to end it, the fourth time in the game he's done so.
Cole Hamels brings the Phillies even in the series as he cruises to a 7-2 win. Rafael Furcal commits three errors apiece in the second inning and the sixth inning.
The Dodgers even the series at 2-2 behind Jim Thome, who goes 4-for-5 with two home runs and five RBI in the 8-6 win. Manny Ramirez, 0 for 13 so far in the series, mopes like a child at the end of the bench and won't eat his vegetables at the post-game meal.
The Phillies close out a 4-2 series win with a 10-1 thumping at Dodger Stadium. Cole Hamels is superb yet again, although he complains about having six days of rest rather than four. Chase Utley is hit in the eye with a flying cork in the clubhouse after the game and is ruled out for the World Series.
Eric Bruntlett, starting in place of Utley, drives in seven runs to set a World Series single-game record, leading the Phillies to a 9-4 win over the Angels in game one.
The Phillies take a commanding 3-0 World Series lead with a 6-3 win. Bobby Abreu goes 0-for-4 and drops two fly balls, visibly shaken by the pressure and raucous Citizens Bank Park crowd. Abreu has seemed disinterested all postseason long since he is no longer accumulating fantasy baseball stats.
Amidst a light drizzle, the Phillies lead 11-1 with two outs in the top of the ninth and an 0-2 count on the batter. As Brad Lidge delivers, Bud Selig sprints from his front row seat and hurls himself in front of the pitch, declaring the game suspended.
In the press conference, he says "We'll stay here till Pearl Harbor Day if we have to. But we're not going to resume until it's 78 and sunny with low humidity and at least a moderate UV index."
On an unseasonably warm day that reaches 73 degrees, Bud Selig finally relents and lets the game resume. FOX goes on the air at 8:00 pm to start their pregame show. Brad Lidge throws the only pitch of the night at 10:23 pm, a fastball right down the middle that Bobby Abreu takes for the final strike of the World Series. Adam Eaton is seen amidst the post-game celebration for some reason.
Three million people again jam the streets for a championship parade. After checking the Doppler and seeing a chance of light showers, Bud Selig attempts to stop the parade but is run over by one of the floats, his legs curling up and disappearing underneath the truck in Wizard of Oz fashion.
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