Sunday Slumpbuster: Phillies early outburst enough to snap streak

Posted by Kevin Durso

Philadelphia Phillies' Hunter Pence, right, congratulates teammates Carlos Ruiz, center, and Ryan Madson after they defeated the New York Mets 9-4 in the baseball game at Citi Field in New York, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011. Pence and Ruiz combined for seven of the Phillies' 19 hits and five of nine runs batted in. Madson pitched a scoreless ninth inning. (AP Photo/Henny Ray Abrams)

The Phillies snapped a season-long eight-game losing streak with a 9-4 win over the Mets. (Courtesy of

It had been over a week since the Phillies last won, so if you were starting to forget the style of baseball that got the Phillies their fifth-straight NL East title, it was on full display on Sunday. For the first time in a week, baseball was fun in Philadelphia, and it was a welcome sign with just three games, and six days, until Postseason play begins.

The Phillies were off and running in the first, as Hunter Pence blasted a two-run shot to right-center. Raul Ibanez would add a sac fly in the inning as well.

Chase Utley singled in the second to give the Phillies their fourth run of the game, marking the third time in 16 games that they had scored more than three runs in a game.

In the third, Placido Polanco added an RBI double.

Pence was at it again in the fourth, adding an RBI single. Ryan Howard followed with an RBI single in the fourth as well. Finally, Carlos Ruiz added a two-run single to cap the four-run inning.

With Roy Halladay on the mound, the Phillies were not going to be denied their first win in a week. Halladay was only in for six innings, but he held the Mets down the whole day, allowing just four hits, one walk, and keeping the Mets off the board the whole way. He also struck out three.

The Phillies’ bullpen didn’t have the same success. Antonio Bastardo couldn’t escape the seventh, as he allowed a two-run shot to Ronny Paulino, and an RBI single to Valentino Pascucci. Vance Worley came on for Bastardo in the seventh, and finished the inning, before pitching the eighth as well. He allowed an eighth-inning run on an RBI double by Justin Turner.

Ryan Madson finished off the game in the ninth, and the Phillies snapped their season-long eight-game losing streak with a 9-4 win over the Mets.

After a week on wondering what was up with the Phillies, they quickly proved that they are still a dominant team when everything clicks. The entire lineup, from Jimmy Rollins to Roy Halladay, managed a hit, and some had more than one at the end of the day. The Phillies as a team managed 19 hits on the day. Jimmy Rollins was 3-for-4, going back-to-back days with three-hit games. Hunter Pence was 3-for-5 and drove in three runs. Carlos Ruiz stayed red hot, going 4-for-4. Ryan Howard managed two hits in his three at-bats before leaving for John Mayberry Jr. Mayberry got hits in both of his at-bats.

The pitching was good for the most part, but Antonio Bastardo still remains a concern. He allowed three runs, and that is not a good sign with the playoffs creeping closer, you have to wonder what role Bastardo will have in the playoffs.

The win finally puts the Phillies off the 98 mark, and one shy of their first 100-win season in 34 years. The franchise record, and Charlie Manuel’s record-setting 646th win, will likely not come this season, but a 100-win season would be nice, and all they need is one win over the Braves in their three-game season-ending series. Their next stop will be the 2011 Postseason.

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