Monday, August 30, 2010

Phils sweep Pads, set to face LA

The Phillies bounced back from a horrid stretch that saw them lose four straight to the Houston Astros the best way possible: by sweeping the NL's best team on the road.

Pitching led the way in San Diego as the Phillies swept the Padres behind great starts from Roy Oswalt, Joe Blanton and Cole Hamels.

Oswalt pitched eight strong innings on Friday but failed to pick up the win when Brad Lidge balked in the tying run in a 'here we go again' moment. But Jimmy Rollins scored on a terrific slide when Placido Polanco singled in the 12th and Chad Durbin was excellent out of the 'pen as the Phils took game one 3-2.

Blaton was very strong in a 3-1 victory on Saturday when Shane Victorino played hero both at the plate and in the field. Cole Hamels threw eight shutout innings in last night's 5-0 victory. After the sweep, the Phillies will start a series in LA against the Dodgers tonight.

The Dodgers are unlikely to have the services of Manny Ramirez. It's expected that the White Sox will acquire him through a straight waiver claim after Manny's bonehead ejection yesterday.

Ramirez sat out of the starting lineup for a fourth straight game as talks between Chicago and LA continued. He was brought in as a pinch hitter with the bases loaded against Colorado yesterday. After the first pitch was a called strike, Manny argued and got tossed from the game, forcing the Dodgers to send another pinch hitter to the plate in an 0-1 count. That idiotic ejection seems to not only have ended his Dodgers' career but also inspired LA to let him go for nothing.

Roy Halladay takes the mound in tonight's opener against Hiroki Kuroda. You may remember Kuroda for throwing over Victorino's head in Game 3 of the 2008 NLCS, prompting both benches to clear and Victorino to tell Kuroda to throw at his body not at his head. Kuroda picked up the victory in that game, the only game of the series the Dodgers would win.

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