Phillies 6, Cardinals 4

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PHILADELPHIA (AP)—Philadelphia’s search for a fifth starter might be over.

Amaury Telemaco won for the first time in over two years, retiring the final 14 batters he faced as the Philadelphia Phillies completed a three-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals with a 6-4 victory Sunday night.

“I wasn’t nervous at all, I felt so peaceful out there,” Telemaco said. “The last time I was up here, my arm was hurting so bad and I wasn’t having fun. Tonight I just thought about all the people that helped me get back here and are behind me supporting me.”

Not all the Phillies were happy after the game, however.

When a reporter approached Philadelphia reliever Jose Mesa after the game, the two got into a heated argument. Mesa, who failed to close out the Cardinals in the ninth inning, then shoved the reporter out of the way before walking away.

Jim Thome and Pat Burrell each hit a two-run homer in the third inning for the Phillies, who have won five straight and lead Florida by a half-game in the NL wild-card race.

Albert Pujols, owner of a 30-game hitting streak, sat out with flu-like symptoms for the Cardinals, who have lost four of their last five.

The sweep was Philadelphia’s first over the Cardinals at Veterans Stadium since 1993.

Telemaco (1-0) pitched seven innings for his first win since June 6, 2001. The game was his first in the majors since a relief appearance on July 16, 2001.

Thome broke a 2-2 tie with a two-run shot to the upper deck in right off Brett Tomko (9-8). It was Thome’s 33rd homer of the season and his fifth in the last six games.

“It was a fastball in and I was looking for it,” said Thome, who has 20 career hits against St. Louis, including 11 homers.

Two batters later, Burrell hit a towering homer to left-center—his 17th of the year.

“The big guys we’ve been counting on came up with the big hits,” Phillies manager Larry Bowa said.

Telemaco, called up Sunday to replace Brandon Duckworth in the Phillies’ starting rotation, allowed two runs on four hits, striking out seven. He didn’t issue a walk, which were a big reason behind Duckworth’s demotion.

“No walks, that’s impressive,” Bowa said. “He trusts his stuff and did a great job against a very good hitting team.”

Jim Edmonds was the last hitter to reach against Telemaco when he singled in the third inning. After Telemaco left, Terry Adams retired the first batter of the eighth, then hit Bo Hart with a pitch, prompting a warning from plate umpire Mark Carlson.

In the ninth, Turk Wendell allowed Tino Martinez’s one-out homer—St. Louis’ first hit since Edmonds’ single. Wendell then hit Edgar Renteria with a pitch, but wasn’t ejected.

Cardinals manager Tony La Russa argued at length before being thrown out by third-base umpire Gerry Davis. At one point, La Russa tore up a piece of paper and tossed it in the air.

“I find it hard to believe that a guy can get hit in the helmet and nothing happens,” said La Russa, referring to Hart being hit.

Following La Russa’s ejection, the Phillies brought in Mesa, who allowed Miguel Cairo’s RBI single and a two-out walk to Mike Matheny.

Mike Williams then came on and struck out pinch-hitter Kerry Robinson for his 27th save in 32 chances. It was Williams’ second save since being traded from Pittsburgh on July 20th.

Bowa stated that Mesa is still the Phillies’ closer.

“He’ll be in there Tuesday,” Bowa said. “But if he doesn’t do his job, he’ll be taken out. He knows that.”

Orlando Palmeiro gave St. Louis a 1-0 lead in the first with his second homer of the season.

Philadelphia answered with two runs in its first at-bat. Marlon Byrd scored on a passed ball and Chase Utley delivered a RBI single.

St. Louis tied the game at 2 on Cairo’s RBI groundout in the second.

Tomko pitched three innings, giving up six runs on six hits. He walked threeand didn’t have a strikeout.


Thome’s homer was the 23rd shot to reach the upper deck in right field at Veterans Stadium. … The Phillies’ last Sunday night home game was Sept. 1, 1996. Williams started that game for Philadelphia. … The Cardinals are 15-15 since the All-Star break. … The Cardinals finished 119-130 all-time at Veterans Stadium. … Pujols is expected back in the Cardinals’ lineup on Tuesday, when the team hosts Pittsburgh. … St. Louis was 1-for-7 with runnersin scoring position for the game and 4-for-28 for the series.

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