Friday, August 21, 2009

Oops, There Goes Another


Following the lyrics of Harry Kalas' favorite song, Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth had the Diamondbacks singing to themselves "Oops, there goes another." Both hitters stayed smoking hot, each collecting a pair of hits while driving shots deep over the centerfield fence. The two players accounted for 6 RBI in the Phillies' 12-3 victory, completing a 3-game sweep of the Diamondbacks.

Werth's blast came in the 6th inning off starter Doug Davis (after Howard walked with one out) to extend the lead to 6-3. The shot traveled an estimated 425 feet. Howard clubbed his shot in the 6th inning with two runners aboard, effectively putting the game out of reach at 11-3. Howard's bomb landed in the visitor's bullpen, an estimated 449 feet from home plate.

The Phillies improved their record to 69-49 (a season high 20 games over .500) and extended their NL Eastern Division lead to 6.5 games with the Marlins loss. They head to New York for a weekend series against the Mets starting tonight. The series does not have quite the same luster with the Mets continuing struggles, but it would be a safe bet that their division rival would love to set back the Phillies's quest for a "three-peat."

Werth crushed four homeruns, drove in a pair of runs in each game and hit .583 in the Diamondbacks series. Howard collected 7 RBI in the last two games alone. The duo have now combined for 11 home runs in the past 7 games.

Meanwhile, Joe Blanton turned in another quality start to record his 8th win of the season. Blanton also demonstrated poise by shutting down Arizona over his final four frames after some bad luck. Apparent confusion allowed a pop up to drop into to shallow left for a double, which later resulted in a run. Also, a ground ball found its way through the infield when Howard had to avoid a sawed off bat heading towards him.

Overall, the Phillies hitters seem to be heating up. With Citi Park's expansive dimensions, they will likely need to find ways to score other than via the home run. Of course, if Howard and Werth continue their assault, tonight's starting pitcher, Cole Hamels, will surely not mind.

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