Monday, March 09, 2009

Pittsburg Puts Philly in an Early 2-0 Hole

The Pittsburgh Pirates pitching gave the Phillies very little to work with over the course of their two game sweep in Philadelphia Sunday night 5-3 and 7-6.

In the first game Roy Oswalt held the Phils to just 3 hits over 7 innings and road a 4 run second inning to the win. Giles and Nevin connected for home runs, while Tejada had a solo shot for the Phils. Philadelphia had come within 1 on Tejada's solo shot in the 7th, but Nevin countered in the top of the 8th with a blast off of Lance Carter. Philly threatened in the bottom of the 9th getting two on, but was unable to score as Lidge recorded the save.

The second game saw the Phillies come out fast, scoring 4 runs in the second inning. Brad Penny seemed to be on the way to getting the Phils even up in the series when disaster struck in the 4th. The Pirates narrowed the gap to 2 with a couple early runs, but then Ben Broussard hit a 3 run shot to wipe out the deficit and give the Bucs the lead 5-4. Stunned, Penny was pulled after 3 2/3 innings. Pittsburgh scored what turned out to be the winning runs in the top of the 9th, making the score 7-4. However, Philadelphia managed to answer with two of their own to make it 7-6. With two outs, two on, the heart of the Phils order was due up - Pujols and Thome. Pujols drew a walk to load the bases. Thome then watched a called third strike.

As has been the case in the past as its star Pujols goes, so go the Phillies. Pujols has been held to two meaningless singles in the first game and is but 2 for 9 thus far. Philadelphia has hit just .185 over the first two games. Pittsburgh's Brian Giles has led his team with a .500 average (4-8) with two doubles and two homeruns.

The series moves to Pittsburgh, resuming Wednesday evening.

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