Thursday, June 26, 2008

Kendrick snaps Phils losing streak despite funky line-up

(AP Photo/Ben Margot)
It seemed like forever ago that Cole Hamels masterfully pitched the Phillies to a victory over the Red Sox. After losing six straight games, the Phils needed another masterful pitching performance, this time by Kyle Kendrick, to finally get another one in the win column, a 4-0 victory over the A's.

Kendrick wasn't dominant, but he was effective, throwing strikes and allowing the A's to hit the ball right at the defense. Kendrick went 8 innings in all, giving up only 4 hits and striking out 4 batters. He needed 113 pitches to earn his 7th victory of the season.

The Phillies also sported a new look to their line-up:

1. Werth, RF
2. Utley, 2B
3. Rollins, SS
4. Burrell, LF
5. Howard, DH
6. Feliz, 3B
7. Victorino, CF
8. Coste, C
9. Bruntlett, 1B

The new lineup got on base a lot, collecting 11 hits and walking 4 times, but it also stranded a ton of runners, 26 in all. With that many stranded runners, it's clear that the hitters were in the wrong order. Chase Utley finally broke out of his slump, collecting four hits, including a triple. Unfortunately, since he was batting 2nd in the lineup, Utley was stranded every time he got on base, and he was never able to drive anyone in.

The Phillies wrap up their series in Oakland tomorrow afternoon. Adam Eaton takes the mound against Rich Harden, Oakland's best pitcher when healthy. The Phils better fix their line-up or it could be a long day against Harden.

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