Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Phils sweep Cards, set for showdown in the Citi

Another great win for the Phils last night as they sweep the Cardinals in a two-game set and take over first place in the NL East.

They did a remarkable job of first handing the 3-0 Kyle Lohse his first defeat, and then doing the same to the 3-0 Adam Wainwright with a 10-7 win.

The ball was flying out of Busch Stadium, as Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth homered for the Phils, and Ryan Ludwick, Yadier Molina and Albert Pujols went deep for St. Louis.

Brett Myers started the game very well, but ended up allowing five runs on nine hits, serving up back-to-back jacks to Ludwick and Molina that cut the Phils' lead, that had been 4-0, to 4-3. Werth's clutch homer regained the Phillies' insurance runs and they never looked back.

Brad Lidge pitched very well with a four run lead in the ninth, despite allowing Pujols his first and only hit of the series, an absolute blast to left field. Pujols can hit the ball out against anyone, but seems to have Lidge's number and may even be in his head. As much as Lidge denies it, it seems lie Pujols always steps up ready to hit against Lidge, and he usually does.

Of course after mentioning that Miguel Cairo has no role on this team and shouldn't be wasting a bench spot, he's given the start at second base last night. He filled in nicely in the field, and picked up his first hit as a Phil, going 1-for-4. Still, Bruntlett could have filled in just the same, but the Phillies just wanted to give Cairo some action. His role on the team remains minuscule.

The Phillies have already guaranteed themselves at least the 2-2 road-trip I was hoping for, and a split with the Mets and 3-1 trip would be tremendous. Usually I'm looking to sweep New York, especially in a two game set, but not with Chan Ho Park on the mound against Johan Santana. That's an uphill battle, but you never know. Park can not afford to allow four or five runs in the game, neither for himself or for his team. That'd likely be an insurmountable deficit against Santana, and Park's rotation spot may be on the line with this start. Let's hope he manages to pull out a gem and keeps the fightins in first place.

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