for this game

Phillies earn comeback win, keep alive playoff hopes

Sep 21, 2007 - 5:46 AM By Tim Hipps PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- Jimmy Rollins made sure the Philadelphia Phillies kept alive their playoff hopes for one more night.

Rollins scored the tying run in the seventh and plated the go-ahead tally an inning later as the Phillies overcame a four-run deficit to earn a 7-6 victory over the Washington Nationals on Thursday.

The much-maligned bullpen allowed two hits in seven scoreless innings for Philadelphia (83-70), which remained 2 1/2 games behind the San Diego Padres (85-67) in the National League wild card race and pulled within 1 1/2 games of the New York Mets (84-68) in the NL East Division.

New York lost a wild extra-inning affair in Florida on Thursday that sent the Phillies' clubhouse into a state of delirium, complete with players standing atop tables and chairs hooting and hollering while slapping high-fives and downing beers as the boom box blared loud club music.

Carlos Ruiz drew a one-out walk against Nationals righthander Jonathan Albaladejo (1-1) and stole second before scoring the game-winning run on Rollins' double down the right field line. Rollins, who has hit safely in 23 of his last 26 games, increased his career-high RBI total to 89 when Ruiz crossed the plate.

"That hit tonight is only as good as tomorrow's game," Rollins said. "If we lose tomorrow, that hit tonight is a wash. But if that propels us to another victory, it's great.

"It's sweet right now, there's no bitterness to it. It's only sweet. That's what you play for, to be in this position at this time of the year, and we're here again. How? I don't know, but we're here."

Lefthander J.C. Romero (2-2) pitched an inning bridging the seventh and eighth to notch the win and closer Brett Myers turned in a scoreless ninth for his 18th save.

"I thought the secret was, the bullpen kept holding them and gave us a chance," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.

Pinch hitter Jayson Werth's three-run homer into the upper deck in left field on a 3-1 offering from lefthander Arnie Munoz pulled the Phillies within 6-5 in the seventh.

"To come off the bench like that in a game where you're four runs down with two guys on and nobody out, I got into a hitter's count and I knew what I was trying to do with the baseball, and I was able to do it," Werth said. "With our lineup, we don't ever really feel like we're out of a game."

Rollins followed with a double down the left field line and advanced to third on a sacrifice by Shane Victorino. Rollins scored to make it 6-6 on a grounder by Chase Utley.

"I was going on contact," Rollins said of Utley's fielder's choice, on which Nationals second baseman Ronnie Belliard opted to throw to the plate. "That's playing baseball. If they bring the infield in, my job - with my speed - is to put the pressure on them. If they bobble the ball right there, I feel I'm going to be safe.

"(Nationals catcher Brian) Schneider did a good job of blocking the plate, but I felt like I was just going to sprint because that's the fastest way to get through, and I was able to beat the throw."

Manuel credited the Phillies' sticktoitiveness.

"We came back and got 'em," Manuel said. "Werth hit a big home run. Rollins got a big hit. Utley put the ball in play, and Rollins beat the throw to the plate. It was huge.

"And Rollins put the ball down the line by the first baseman and we won the game. I've always said it's attributed to the players and their attitude and how they look at the game. That's how we talk all the time - one at a time and put in all the effort you've got the day of the game."

Manuel said Rollins epitomizes the Phillies' approach to the game.

"I can't tell you how much he means to us," Manuel said of Rollins, who heard fans chanting 'MVP! MVP! MVP!' on the road. "Everything he does is part of our team. He's the guy who sets the table. He steals bases, he hits home runs, he hits doubles, triples, he scores runs, he knocks them in, and he plays defense like Ozzie Smith, so why can't he be MVP?"

Utley extended his hitting streak to 15 games with a triple to right-center off the glove of Nationals center fielder Ryan Church in the first inning. Ryan Howard followed with his 41st homer run of the season, a first-pitch blast to right off righthander Jason Bergmann that gave Philadelphia an early 2-0 lead.

Bergmann pitched well, allowing two runs and four hits in six innings while striking out seven and issuing a pair of walks.

"I think their bullpen basically won the battle," Nationals manager Manny Acta said. "We scored six runs in the first two innings, then they came in and shut us down for seven. ... Give credit to the Phillies. They're playing very well. Their bullpen deserves some credit."

The Nationals halved the deficit in the bottom of the first on an RBI double by Ryan Zimmerman. Washington broke out in the second, batting around en route to scoring five runs and chasing Philadelphia starter Kyle Lohse.

Schneider's RBI double to right scored Robert Fick, forging a 2-2 tie. After Felipe Lopez walked, Belliard's two-run double to the gap in right-center field gave Washington a 4-2 lead.

Lohse hit Wily Mo Pena with a pitch and Church followed with a two-run double to right that gave the Nationals a 6-2 cushion.

"We knew we were still in the game, it was just a matter of how we were going to put some runs across," Rollins said.

Lohse, who threw only 37 pitches, was charged with six runs and six hits in two innings. He also walked two and hit a batter.

The Phillies were in a stretch run to make the playoffs the past two seasons and came up short both times. Manuel believes it's time for their fortunes to change.

"If we keep going like this, we're going to win one of these days," Manuel said. "And hopefully, it's this year. I talk about that to these guys a lot."

"We have a great clubhouse, with great chemistry," Werth said. "The guys here get along great. It's just a special atmosphere in here, for sure. Coming down the stretch is going to be a lot of fun. We're going to have a lot of opportunities to do some really special things. Hopefully, the town of Philadelphia will be behind us when we get home. We've got a little homestand there to finish this up and it could be real exciting."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    PHILADELPHIA 2 0 0 0 0 0 4 1 0 7 8 0
    WASHINGTON 1 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 8 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: PHI - KYLE LOHSE, J.D. DURBIN (3RD), KANE DAVIS (5TH), CLAY CONDREY
    (7TH), J.C. ROMERO (7TH), TOM GORDON (8TH), BRETT MYERS (9TH)
    AND CARLOS RUIZ
    WAS - JASON BERGM

    Sep 20 10:34 PM
  • 40
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 10:13 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JIMMY ROLLINS SCORED CARLOS RUIZ.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J ROLLINS ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 7
    WASHINGTON 6 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR PHILADELPHIA: S VICTORINO (.283, 1-FOR-3, SAC)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 9:59 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY CHASE UTLEY SCORED JIMMY ROLLINS.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, C UTLEY ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 6
    WASHINGTON 6 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR PHILADELPHIA: R HOWARD (.260, 1-FOR-2, BB, HR, 2 RBI)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 9:19 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    THREE-RUN HOME RUN BY JAYSON WERTH (7) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT
    IN THE 7TH OFF ARNIE MUNOZ SCORED GREG DOBBS AND CARLOS RUIZ.
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 5, WASHINGTON 6
    DUE UP FOR PHILADELPHIA: J ROLLINS (.292, 0-FOR-3)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 9:14 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY RYAN CHURCH SCORED RONNIE BELLIARD AND WILY MO
    PENA.
    SITUATION: 5 RUNS IN, R CHURCH ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 2
    WASHINGTON 6 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: A KEARNS (.264, 0-FOR-1)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 7:42 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY RONNIE BELLIARD SCORED BRIAN SCHNEIDER AND FELIPE
    LOPEZ.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, R BELLIARD ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 2
    WASHINGTON 4 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: R ZIMMERMAN (.270, 1-FOR-1, RBI)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 7:38 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BRIAN SCHNEIDER SCORED ROBERT FICK.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B SCHNEIDER ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 2
    WASHINGTON 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: J BERGMANN (.097, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 7:34 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY RYAN ZIMMERMAN SCORED RONNIE BELLIARD.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R ZIMMERMAN ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: PHILADELPHIA 2
    WASHINGTON 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: W PENA (.290, 8 HR, 19 RBI)

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 7:19 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    PHILADELPHIA 2 2 2 0
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: PHI - KYLE LOHSE
    WAS - JASON BERGMANN

    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: F LOPEZ (.243, 9 HR, 49 RBI)
    R BELLIARD (.288, 11 HR, 52 RBI)
    R ZIMMERMAN (.269, 24 HR, 8

    Phillies vs. NationalsSep 20 7:12 PM
  • 5
    roots
    dseligsohn Added 5 roots

    Phillies vs. NationalsJul 18 4:23 PM