Now that is more like it.
While Tuesday night's 8-5 win in Arizona showed that the Phillies still have some pop in their bats, it was just one game. Was Hunter Pence essentially putting himself in the lineup and promptly hitting a two-run home run in the first inning a positive sign? What about Laynce Nix hitting his first home run with the Phillies, pushing the fourth inning lead to 4-0? What, if anything, should be made of Pete Orr's three runs batted in? Shane Victorino hit his team-leading fourth home run as well
The Phillies have been lacking on offense this season, largely due to missing Ryan Howard and Chase Utley. On Tuesday the team matched a season-high for runs scored (scored eight runs April 15 vs. New York Mets) and snapped a three-game losing streak. Now the Phillies have a chance to salvage a series before heading home for four games with the Chicago Cubs. It has been a tough west-coast road trip for the Phillies, who dropped a series in San Francisco and split in San Diego. Roy Halladay took his first loss in San Diego over the weekend and Cliff Lee pitched ten shutout innings last Wednesday in San Francisco, only to see his offense fail to pick him up and be placed on the disabled list.
But on Tueday night, things just seemed to click once the lineup got a chance to see Diamondbacks starter Josh Collmenter. Vance Worley continued to show some very good things on the mound, allowing five hits and one run in six innings of work. Worley struck out six batters and the only run allowed came on a Cody Ransom solo shot to lead off the fifth inning. It was a stark contrast to the performance by Kyle Kendrick the night before. As I mentioned yesterday, Worley has a swagger and has confidence that he belongs on the mound as a starter. Kendrick does not appear to have that same starter's mentality. The difference is night and day between the two arms.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this was the first time Orr had driven in three runs in a game (397 career games). Prior to Tuesday night, Orr's 396 games were the most for any active position player that had never had a three-RBI game.
Jonathan Papelbon picked up his sixth save with the Phillies. He is now six-for-six in save opportunities with his new team.
Former Phillies prospect and occasional bullpen arm Mike Zagurski got a chance to pitch against his old team. Zagurski pitched a 1-2-3 top of the ninth for Arizona on the same day he was called up by Arizona.
After the game the Phillies announced that reliever Mike Stutes was placed on the 15-day disabled list. Michael Schwimer form Lehigh Valley was called up to fill his spot in the bullpen.
Cole Hamels takes the mound for the series finale. Hamels is 3-1 lifetime against the Diamondbacks, with a 3.72 ERA and 1.164 WHIP. His 9.8 SO/BB ratio against Arizona is his highest against National League opponents, and second highest only to the Texas Rangers. First pitch is scheduled for 3:40 p.m.
Image via Busted Coverage.