One swing can change a game.
It told the story in the 1st for the Phils. But like any good story, a turn of events occurred as one big swing for the Padres change the tone of the story. But when the going gets tough for the hero, it takes one mighty swing to bring the story back to a happy ending.
That was the case in Saturday afternoon’s 8-6 Phillies win. It was the Phillies’ fourth straight win and fifth in their last six games.
Kyle Kendrick was cruising through the first five innings, holding onto a 3-0 lead created by Chase Utley’s three-run homer in the 1st inning. But the offenses’ ability to only tack on one hit after that caught up to Kendrick.
Kendrick put two on in the top of the 6th before surrendering a two-out three-run homer to Padres 3B Chase Headley. He was lifted for Michael Stutes, who in turn gave up a lead-off triple to Logan Forsythe before being surrendering the go-ahead run to Cameron Maybin.
But the Phillies weren’t ready to go away. Ryan Howars, who was 0-for-8 with eight strike outs in his career against Padres starter Mat Latos, didn’t get the start today. That made him available to pinch-hit, which he did in the bottom of the 7th. He ripped a solo home run off Padres reliever Chad Qualls to lead-off the inning, tying the game up at four.
Qualls stayed in, allowing a double to Ross Gload and walked Jimmy Rollins before facing Michael Martinez. Martinez, who is obviously sick of being labeled a bum, hit a three-run home run off Qualls to give the Phils a commanding 7-4 lead.
Utley tacked on a second home run for fun, making it an 8-4 game. He finished the day 3-for-3 with two homers and four RBIs.
Antonio Bastardo made things a little interesting in the 8th when he loaded the bases and allowed a run to score on a hit batter. But David Herndon came in and salvaged the inning, allowing one more run that was given to Bastardo.
Ryan Madson allowed a double but still nailed down the 9th for his 17th save.
2B: Rollins (17), Gload (3), Brown (10), Ruiz (13). HR: Utley 2 (6), Howard (19) Martinez (2).
WP: Stutes (4-0). LP: Qualls. S: Madson (17).