PHILADELPHIA (AP)—Bobby Abreu gave Philadelphia an oh-so brief reason to celebrate.
Penny pitched four-hit ball over seven innings, drove in a run and helped the Dodgers beat Philadelphia 6-2 Sunday for a doubleheader split.
“I was very impressed with what took place today all over,” Dodgers manager Grady Little said. “It takes a toll on you, but not really as bad if you lost both of these games.”
In the opener, Abreu hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning in a 6-3 victory that stopped a season-opening four-game losing streak. The Phillies avoided their first 0-5 start since 1934.
Penny (2-0) was in command throughout, striking out six and allowing only one runner to reach second base after the first inning. Penny also put the Dodgers ahead 2-1 in the fourth with a broken-bat bloop single off Jon Lieber (0-2).
Lance Carter completed a seven-hitter for Los Angeles, which had 15 hits.
“He stayed strong all the way through,” Little said. “Probably the last pitch he made was the best one he made all game.”
After rallying from a 3-0 deficit in the first game, the Phillies scored first in the second. Leadoff hitter Jimmy Rollins singled, stole second and came around on Abreu’s one-out single. Abreu added an RBI double in the eighth, making him 4-for-6 with five RBIs in the doubleheader.
Sandy Alomar Jr.’s RBI double in the second tied the game. Former Phillie Ramon Martinez drove in two more runs with a double in the eighth, then scored on pinch-hitter Olmedo Saenz’s double that made it 5-1.
“It was important for us to start pitching that way,” Alomar said. “If I get a few knocks, that’s great.”
It also was great for the Dodgers for Penny to pitch deep into the game and settle down after a shaky first inning. With a quick turnaround that has the Dodgers playing Monday afternoon at Pittsburgh—their third game in 24 hours— Penny wanted to save the bullpen.
“I was just throwing strikes with all my pitches,” he said. “I got a little more focused and made sure I was making pitches.”
Lieber allowed two runs and struck out four in seven innings. Lieber is 1-7 in 12 career starts against the Dodgers, even though he’s pitched at least six innings in seven straight starts against Los Angeles. He did lower his season ERA from 21.60 to 8.71.
“It was just a rough day,” Lieber said. “Things snowballed.”
In the first game, the Phillies took advantage of a fielding lapse by Los Angeles in the ninth to cap their comeback.
With two outs and a full count, Abreu hit his first homer of the season, an opposite-field drive to left. He was mobbed at the plate by teammates.
Tom Gordon (1-1) earned his first win for Philadelphia, striking out two in the ninth. Gordon and two other relievers did not allow a hit in three scoreless innings.
“We got a good club, but we just weren’t playing very good,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. “The other teams were outplaying us. Things started going our way today. We’re going to be there.”
With runners at the corners and one out, Yhency Brazoban threw a wild pitch, but pinch-runner Nunez was thrown out at the plate by catcher Dioner Navarro. Aaron Rowand followed with a tying single, his first RBI for the Phillies.
Furcal hit a routine fly to center to lead off the game that Rowand seemed to lose in the sun, and Rowand dropped the ball for an error. Furcal scored on J.D. Drew’s triple off the right-field wall.
Rollins then dropped Bill Mueller’s two-out popup to shortstop for another error, putting the Dodgers ahead 2-0. Navarro homered in the second.
“It was a tough sun,” Phillies starter Ryan Madson said. “You couldn’t blame anybody for that.”
After spending the last two seasons in the bullpen, Madson allowed one earned run and five hits in six innings. In his previous start, against the Chicago White Sox on June 8, 2004, he allowed six runs in two-thirds of an innings.
“I tried to keep the ball down,” he said. “I only got hurt when the ball was up.”
Philadelphia loaded the bases with one out in the third, and Chase Utley hit what appeared to be a sure double-play grounder to shortstop. But second baseman Jeff Kent bounced the relay throw, allowing Utley to reach and Rollins to score. Pat Burrell followed with an RBI single.
The doubleheader included the makeup of Saturday’s rainout. … The Dodgers had not played a doubleheader since Aug. 25, 2000 at Chicago. … The Dodgers will see a familiar face when they play Monday at Pittsburgh—Pirates manager Jim Tracy who went 427-383 and won the 2004 NL West title. … A fan was carried out on a stretcher in the eighth inning, possibly after being hit by a foul ball. … Rollins has a hit in 41 of 42 games, dating to last season. … The walkup crowd of over 8,300 among the 38,056 fans was the largest in Citizens Bank Park history.