The difference in this NLCS is going to be the Phillies’ ability to put runs up on the board. You saw just that Sunday night as the offense erupted in the seventh inning to pull away from San Francisco and win, 6-1, in game two of the NLCS.
The star of the night goes to Roy Oswalt. His gem along with the bats awakening will send the Phils to San Francisco with a tied series. Oswalt went eight innings, allowing a run on three hits and three walks while striking out nine. His only mistake came to non-other than Cody Ross, who hit his third home run of the NLCS in the fifth inning.
The Phillies took the 1-0 lead in the first inning without even recording a hit. A walk to Chase Utley, an error on a Placido Polanco ground ball, and a walk to Ryan Howard loaded the bases. After Jayson Werth struck out, Jimmy Rollins walked in the first run of the game.
Ross’ solo blast into the left field bleachers tied the game at one before the Phils answered in the bottom half. Shane Victorino led-off with a double to left field. Utley and Polanco hit back-to-back sacrifice flies to bring Polanco home, making it a 2-1 game.
The Phillies then erupted for four runs in the seventh inning. Oswalt helped his own cause with a lead-off single. Victorino then bunted Oswalt over and the Giants walked Utley to get to Polanco.
Polly hit an RBI single to score Oswalt, who ran through Sam Perlozzo’s stop sign to make it a 3-1 game. After Howard’s strike out, the Jeremy Affeldt walked Werth to get to Rollins.
After Oswalt’s start, Ryan Madson hit a small scare, giving up a couple base runners before sealing the door shut in the ninth inning.
With a lot of scrutiny for Rollins’ spot in the line up and if the Phils should go to Wilson Valdez, Rollins answered the call with the bases loaded. J-Roll hit a line drive off the top of the right field wall to empty the bases and make it a 6-1 game.
Victorino, Howard, and Rollins each had two-hit games, making up for the struggles on Saturday. Rollins was especially clutch, driving in four runs on the game and having the type of performance he needed to get himself back in the swing of things.
2B: Howard (2), Victorino (1), Rollins.
WP: Oswalt. LP: Sanchez.
The Phillies will head to San Francisco for the next three games, tossing Cole Hamels, Joe Blanton, and Roy Halladay. Matt Cain will get the start for the Giants tomorrow with Madison Bumgarner likely going game four and Tim Lincecum in game five.