PHILADELPHIA (AP)—Kevin Millwood rejoined the Philadelphia rotation on Sunday, too late to do any good for the Phillies in the wild-card race.
Millwood pitched two innings in his return from the disabled list, and the Phillies went on to beat the Montreal Expos 7-2.
Millwood had not pitched since Aug. 5 because of a sprained ligament and tendon in his right elbow, and the Phillies fell out of postseason contention during his absence. He had decent velocity, in the low 90-mph range, but struggled with his command, allowing one run and three hits with three strikeouts and two walks.
“I honestly wasn’t looking to throw that hard,” Millwood said. “I was a little anxious before the game. I don’t know if I was pumped up. It was a fun day, but I still have things to work on.”
Millwood, eligible to become a free agent after the World Series, won three of four starts going into the Aug. 5 game at San Diego. He left that game after two innings with soreness in his elbow.
He is 9-6 with a 4.86 ERA in 24 starts this tear. Phillies manager Larry Bowa was pleasantly surprised at Millwood’s effort against the Expos.
“I thought Millwood threw well,” he said. “I wasn’t expecting that kind of velocity. I expected 89-90 the first time out. He had good life on his fastball.”
Gavin Floyd (2-0) won despite allowing four hits and five walks in three innings, allowing one run. Amaury Telemaco, Todd Jones and Billy Wagner combined for four shutout innings to finish the game. Wagner returned from a two-game suspension for his ejection at the New York Mets last weekend.
“My curveball was working when I used it,” Floyd said.
Scott Downs (3-6) gave up five runs and eight hits in four innings. Montreal stranded 13 runners, leaving the bases loaded three times.
With the score 2-all in the fourth, Rollins hit an RBI single and Polanco followed with a two-run single that made it 5-2. The Phillies added a pair of runs in the sixth off Gary Majewski on Bobby Abreu’s RBI double and David Bell’s run-scoring single.
Tony Batista’s RBI double in the first put Montreal ahead, but Lieberthal’s 16th homer tied in in the second and Philadelphia went ahead in the third when Jim Thome’s popup was dropped by shortstop Maicer Izturis on the windy afternoon, and a run scored on the play, which was ruled a hit.
Endy Chavez retied it in the fourth with an RBI single for Montreal, which finished its trip at 6-7.
“We had a good trip, but we didn’t finish it off like we would have wanted to,” Montreal manager Frank Robinson said. “We couldn’t make things happen when we had the opportunities.”
The crowd of 42,603 put the Phillies’ home attendance over 3 million for only the second time at 3,036,284, the first since the pennant-winning season of 1993. … Batista went 8-for-14 (.571) with six RBIs in the series. He has 17 RBIs against Philadelphia this season. … Lieberthal’s homer was the team’s 200th of the season.