Phillies vs. Astros
The Phillies and Astros played a wild game Tuesday night in Philadelphia.Â The game featured a pitcher’s duel, ninth inning home run, and a key ejection that forced the Phillies to use a pitcher in the field.Â In the end, the Astos defeated the Phillies by a score of 4-2 in a 16 inning marathon.
The Astros got on the board first in the fourth inning when Carlos Lee hit a two-run homer off of Phillies’ starter Cole Hamels.Â The Phils got a run back off of Houston starter Bud Norris in the sixthÂ on a Raul Ibanez RBI double, but the Astros held on to a 2-1 lead entering the ninth inning.Â Â Â With two outs in the ninth, Jimmy Rollins blasted a solo home run off of Houston reliever Wilton Lopez to tie the game and send it to extra innings.Â Then things got really interesting.
Â Neither team could find a way to score in extra frames.Â In the bottom of the 14th, Ryan Howard came up with two runners on and two outs.Â Howard had two check swings ruled strikes by third base umpire Scott Barry, the last being strike three.Â When Howard tossed his bat and helmet after the strike out, Barry ejected Howard, causing the Phillies first baseman to charge towards the umpire before being restrained.Â The ejectionÂ left the Phillies short a position player, and forced manager Charlie Manuel to insert pitcher Roy Oswalt in left field.Â
The Astros finally broke the tie in the top of the 16th off of reliever David Herndon (1-3), scratching out two runs on an infield single and fielder’s choice.Â In the bottom of the inning, Howard’s ejection loomed large again.Â Â Astros’ reliever Jeff Fulchino (1-0) retired the first two batters, but after walking Placido Polanco, Houston intentionally walked Chase Utley to bring up “clean up hitter” Roy Oswalt.Â Â Fulchino got Oswalt to ground out to end the game and give Houston the victory.
Marlins vs. Mets
Â The Mets’ slumbering offense knocked out Marlins’ ace Josh Johnson after five innings and used single runs in the final two innings to defeat Florida by a score of 6-5 at Citi Field.
The Mets broke a 2-2 tie with two runs in the fifth off of Johnson, thanks to an RBI single by Carlos Beltran and Jeff Francoeur‘s second sacrifice fly of the game.Â Mets’ starter R.A. Dickey kept the Mets in the lead until the seventh.Â With two outs and two on in the seventh, Dickey allowed a three-run homer to Gaby Sanchez to give Florida a 5-4 lead.Â However, the Mets came back against the Marlins’ bullpen.
With two outs in the eighth, Angel Pagan doubled and Beltran drove in his second run of the game with a run-scoring single off of Clay Hensley to tie the game at 5. Â After Hisanori Takahashi (8-6) retired the Marlins in the top of the ninth, Luis Castillo hit a two-out single off of Will Ohman (0-2) to score Ike Davis and give the Mets the walk-off victory.
Nationals vs. Cubs
The Cubs’ Carlos Zambrano pitched effectively into the eighth inning, and closer Carlos Marmol survived a shaky ninth as Chicago held on to defeat the Nationals 5-4 in Washington.
Nationals’ starter John Lannan (5-6) allowed a three-run homer to Alfonso Soriano and a two-run shot to Tyler Colvin as the Cubs built a 5-1 lead.Â Meanwhile, Zambrano (5-6) allowed just one run and five hits over 7 1/3 innings, striking out eight.Â Â Marmol entered the game in the bottom of the eighth with the bases loaded, but struck out Ian Desmond to keep the score at 5-1.
In the ninth, Marmol created his own bases loaded mess, and with two outs, Adam Kennedy cleared the bases with a three-run double to cut Chicago’s lead to 5-4.Â Luckily for the Cubbies, Marmol rebounded to retire Ryan Zimmerman on a fly ball to preserve the victory.Â Despite allowing three runs, Marmol was credited with his 23rd save of the season since he entered the game with the tying run at the plate.
Braves vs. Rockies
The first place Atlanta Braves received a solid starting pitching performance from Derek Lowe, but the Rockies’ Jorge De La Rosa was better on Tuesday night, and the Braves fell by a score of 5-2 in Colorado.
The Rockies opened the scoring when Carlos Gonzalez hit a two-run homer off of Lowe (11-12) in the bottom of the first.Â The Braves got a run back in the second off of De La Rosa (5-4) on an Alex Gonzalez solo shot, but Rockies got that run back with a Seth Smith home run in the sixth.Â Alex Gonzalez cut the Rockies lead to 3-2 with a seventh inning RBI single, but that was as close as the Braves would get.
The Rockies added some insurance in the eighth inning courtesy of a Dexter Fowler two-run single.Â Huston Street pitched a perfect ninth inning to notch his 12th save of the season.