Phillies sluggers Chase Utley (left) and Ryan Howard celebrate after Howard's two-run go ahead homer in the 6th inning. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
If there is one thing that hasn’t changed between the Dodgers and Phillies the past four years, it’s that each trip to LA must include some dramatic form of a comeback win that devastates Dodgers fans.
This time, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard combined for a four-run 6th inning to complete the Phils comeback in a game that started out 6-0 in the Dodgers favor.
After Utley’s two-run, two-out single with two strikes tied the game up at seven, Howard brought Utley and himself home with a two-run opposite field shot that gave the Phils a 9-7 lead. The Phils went on to win, 9-8, sweeping the Dodgers.
Vance Worley finally fell back to earth. Worley was roughed up pretty bad in the 1st inning of his start, surrendering five runs. He allowed six runs over four innings on seven hits and three walks. But the Phillies got the young right-hander off the hook, preserving his 8-1 record.
The bulk of the 1st-inning damage was done by Juan Rivera, who hit a three-run jack to give the Dodgers a 4-0 lead. The homer highlighted a huge day by Rivera, who went 3-for-3 with a homer and three RBIs. Matt Kemp had a three-hit day as well, doubling and driving in a run.
The Phillies took a tremendous bite into the Dodgers’ 6-0 lead with a three-run 4th and two-run 5th to make it a 6-5 game. Hunter Pence hit a two-run homer in the top of the 4th to put the Phillies on the board. Worley helped his own cause, driving in Michael Martinez to make it 6-3.
The Phils got two more runs back in the 5th on an RBI single by Howard and a fielding error by Dodgers 3B Casey Blake on a ball hit by Pence to make it a 6-5 game.
But the Dodgers gave themselves a little room in the bottom of the 5th with an RBI double by James Loney off Kyle Kendrick. But the room wasn’t enough as Chase Utley ripped a game-tying two-run single into left field to even it up at seven apiece in the 6th inning before Howard’s blast.
Howard’s home run joined Shane Victorino and Matt Stairs’ 2008 NLCS heroics and Carlos Ruiz’s two-run double last season that capped an incredible four-run 9th inning almost last year to the date.
2B: Victorino (20). HR: Pence (14), Howard (25).
WP: Kendrick (7-5). LP: Hawksworth (2-3). S: Madson (22)