Ryan Howard and Michael Martinez each hit home runs as the Phillies held off the Reds 6-4 to complete the four game sweep in the Queen City. Vance Worley won his 10th game of the season while Mike Leake took the loss. A pinch-hit three run home run by Chris Heisey made things interesting the seventh inning, but the combo of Brad Lidge, Antonio Bastardo, and Ryan Madson held the fort down. Madson picked up his 26th save of the season. With his home run, Ryan Howard became the third Phillies hitter since 1900 to have six consecutive seasons of 30 home runs and 100 RBIs. Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips, who had two hits in the game, said on his twitter after the game that “the Phillies are the best team in the National League.” The Phillies head to Florida to play the Marlins while the disappointing Reds head to St. Louis to face a suddenly streaking Cardinals.
The Phillies jumped on Reds starter Mike Leake in the third inning. With one out, Hunter Pence doubled to right and Raul Ibanez walked. Brian Schneider singled to right scoring Pence and giving the Phillies the 1-0 lead. Wilson Valdez had an infield hit that loaded the bases with one out for Vance Worley. Worley helped his own cause with a RBI single to center. The next batter, Shane Victorino added his own RBI single to make it 3-0 Phillies. With the score 3-1, Ryan Howard hit a solo home run to center for his 30th of the year. In the 7th inning, Michael Martinez hit his first home run since July 23rd with a two run home run. In the bottom of the seventh inning, Worley ran into his first bit of trouble. After allowing a double and single to lead off the inning, Vanimal gave up a three run home run to Chris Heisey. Vance’s day was done after that. Worley went six innings, gave up four runs, and had seven strikeouts (six looking). After Lidge struck out one and then walked Edgar Renteria, Antonio Bastardo got the reigning NL MVP Joey Votto to ground into a double play. Bastardo continued his dominating season by striking out the side in the 8th inning. Ryan Madson had a 1,2,3 9th inning to wrap up the four game sweep.
-Bastardo has been a saving grace for this bullpen this year.
-Hopefully this is the start of another great September for Ryan Howard.
-This is only the second time in franchise history that the team is 41 games over .500. We could be watching the best team in Phillies history. Pending October results.
-4-0 start to the 33 games in 31 days.
-The Phillies could play below .500 and still reach 100 wins. Incredible.