James McDonald was wild, plain and simple.
His awful fifth inning, mired by wild pitches, passed balls and hit batters, was his undoing as the Phils went on to win, 7-3.
But the day belonged to Roy Halladay. He allowed two runs on six hits and a walk while striking out six in seven innings of work. It was his eighth win on the season, taking sole possession of the team lead from Cole Hamels.
Halladay tied Noodles Hahn for fifth all time in consecutive road starts going past six innings with 61.
In the top of the 5th, Halladay, Shane Victorino and Placido Polanco were all walked on 12 straight balls to start the inning by McDonald. Clint Hurdle gave him the hook, giving way to Chris Resop.
After a fielder’s choice by Utley that had Doc thrown out at the plate, Ryan Howard tied the game with a 13-pitch at-bat that resulted in a sacrifice fly. Carlos Ruiz then drove in the go-ahead run when he was hit on the hands.
Utley had himself a three-hit game. It was a huge step for him as he has been struggling a bit since his return. He’s now batting .244, a long ways from his norm.
Domonic Brown had himself a pair of hits and missed out on six possible RBIs. Twice Brown was just shy of homering, missing a grand slam foul in the 5th and doubled off the top of the wall in the 7th.
The third incident came in the 4th. With runners on the corners and one out, Brown hit a hard grounder up the middle that hit second base umpire Chad Fairchild in the leg. By rule, that’s a dead ball. Brown was awarded first and the runner on first could go to second but Howard had to hold up on third despite being able to score easily on the play.
Howard drove in three of runs on a day he had a handful of RBI opportunities. He had at least one runner in scoring position for five of his six AB’s (six total).
2B: Brown (5).
WP: Halladay (8-2). LP: McDonald (3-4).