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Saturday, September 17, 2011
Game 150 Cards @ Phils --- Division Clinched 5 Straight Years
The Braves have already one today so the Phils have to win tonight to Clinch the division on their own.
Good start for Oswalt. NO runs in the first.
Phils lead off with a hit from Rollins and he gets to second on a ground out y Victorino. He was running or the grounder would have been a double play.
They walk Howard intentionally to get to Pence and it seems like every time they do that he gets a hit. He did again.
Nothing amazing just a liner over the third baseman that brings in Rollins. So walk Howard and and Pence gets a hit again.
Phils load them up in the third but don't score. Load them up again in the fourth but Jake Westbrook walked Victorino to force
in a run. Still Loaded one out.
Unusual thing happened in the fourth. Before Victorino walked Larrussa came out and talked to the umps and then the umps talked to Manual.
Apparently the Cards phone doesn't work so they had to tell the Phils they can't use their phone either.
Larussa's signal was a "wide" sign, holding his arms out to his side. He want Arthur Rhoades, a big guy but not exactly wide.
Oh well they don't get any more as Utley popped out and Howard grounded out.
Phils are just chuggin' along tonight. Victorino homered earlier gave them a 3-0 lead and hear in the seventh Oswalt got out of a first and third two out jam with a big strike out with a sweeping curve.
He is on point tonight, very sharp, hitting the corners a great game. looks like seven might be all for him though.
Stutes in to pitch the eighth.
Cards are kicking up a two out fuss. Pujols singled and now two on for berkman. Pujols was on five times yesterday and another couple times tonight.
Berkman singles in a run.
I'm not thrilled with the pen the last few weeks. Bastardo has been leaking oil and Stutes hasn't been very hot lately, and now another hit. Finally Manual comes out to get Stutes.
I think these guys can only pitch to 2 or 3 hitters now and that Manual needs to have someone ready in the pen basically at all times.
Stutes blew a gasket and gave up four hits real fast and two runs. They should have had Lidge up much earlier so he could come in at least one batter earlier.
Charlie just seems to fall asleep sometimes and forgets there is a game going on. Lidge throws one pitch and gets an easy grounder out. One batter too late, still they have the lead 3-2. He leaves pitchers in for one or two hitters too long, a lot.
They Get one back on Victorino's rbi single in their part of the eighth. He has three rbi's tonight.
Utley is hit right in the back of his calf and this loads the bases. Howard is up for the second time with them loaded. He hasn't done much of anything with the bases loaded in awhile. Very quickly down 0-2 after he swings at another ball two feet outside.
Sounds like a repeat of many at bats this year. He can't stay away from that pitch. Also why does anyone throw him anything but a curveball. There it is again, a foot outside sweeping curve, swing and a miss.
He is so far off the plate in the box now that his back foot is on the back line and his front foot is on the farthest left line.
Started the season much closer to the plate and he was seeing that pitch and not swinging at it.
In spite of that I feel pretty good about tonight. It's a much different air around the game from yesterday. Oner difference is the 4-5-6 hitters yesterday were 0-20 I think or very close to that.
The Cards are making some costly mistakes this inning. Furcal just took a grounder and was going to throw to second for the force but as usual Utley ran very hard to second. Furcal had to double pump and throw to first and it cost them. Pence also running hard beat the throw, scoring Rollins.
Bases still loaded for Raul Ibanez.
On a 1-1 pitch Ibanez gets a pitch from Octavio Dotel right down broadway and he deposited that ball 10 rows deep in right field. Grand Slam his 9th.
Six runs in the bottom of the eighth and that champagne is out of the fridge.
Madson is in to finish it up, not a save chance but I guess he should be in there anyway.
Wheels is already in the clubhouse ready for the celebration.
How many times have they clinched these at home? Seems like every time.
Well of course Madson doesn't do it easy. He gives up a two out hit, that's happened a bunch lately.
This game hurts the Cards too because they're chasing the Braves for the wild card spot.
There it is. Furcal bounces a high two hopper to Utley that he BARE-HANDS and throws out Furcal.
Five straight division titles. I remember in 1980 after they won the division for the 4th time in five years and thinking it was such a great run. then two years later they went to the World Series and 5 divisions in 8 years. What a great run that was. Now 5 divisions in a row.
Hunter Pence had a smile on face like you might not believe while he was running in after the last out.
I've heard some talk on if they should celebrate a division win with the champagne or not, of course yes. there are a bunch of new and young players who haven't been through this so they deserve their chance to celebrate.
In the clubhouse the players are all picking put their own bottle but it is a subdued celebration to start. almost looks like they're waiting for someone to go first.
There it goes they crazy begins. they were waiting for Pence to get in there to start it off.
Dom Brown is drinking his bottle, i'm not sure that's what this champagne is for.
The new t-shirt might be "Let's pop bottles" Wheels ask Pence what time it was to see if he would say "Good game let's go eat" he said Let's pop Bottles.
Now there will be much rest for some of these guys. Howard has a ad foot so he'll be out some and probaly Ruiz.
Looks like most of the celebrating is the new guys.
I think they have giant cans of beer now, those cans are huge.
Wow clinched the division with 12 games left. I love it. I can't wait 'till the playoffs start. If anyone I know is reading this, after the playoffs start don't call me, don't ask me to come out of my Home Theater Room I'm not available.
last ten 6-4
After Pence 32-13
Division up 12
Magic number Zero
Best record magic number 1