Shaky Moyer remains perfect against Marlins in Philadelphia’s 8-5 win
PHILADELPHIA (AP)—Each home run off Jamie Moyer brought thoughts of another Philadelphia collapse, another squandered chance to gain ground in its playoff push.
Only this time, the Phillies’ bullpen bailed him out.
Pat Burrell homered and drove in three runs, and Moyer overcame one awful inning to remain unbeaten against Florida and lead Philadelphia to an 8-5 win over the Marlins on Sunday.
“Hopefully, we’ve turned the page and can find a way to get into the playoffs instead of going home,” shortstop Jimmy Rollins said.
Not turning some of these would-be blowouts into tight scores sure would help.
Carlos Ruiz also homered for the Phillies, who tagged Dontrelle Willis and rebounded from a crushing loss on Wednesday at Atlanta to take two of three from the Marlins. The Phillies open a four-game set with Colorado on Monday in a series that could shuffle the National League wild-card standings.
Philadelphia is two games behind San Diego, the wild card leader.
“We’ve got to put together some good baseball and not make too many mistakes,” said Brett Myers, who got his 15th save.
Twice last week the Phillies blew 5-0 leads in stunning losses to Florida and Atlanta that knocked them back in the NL East and severely hindered their wild-card run. They almost blew another early lead again in this one.
Behind homers from Ruiz and Burrell, the Phillies went up 8-0 through five against Florida. Moyer (13-11) was cruising, pitching one-hit ball. Then, as suddenly as the soft-tossing lefty was retiring batters, he got battered in the sixth.
Reggie Abercrombie had a pinch-hit double to open the inning and Ramirez followed with his 26th homer. Two batters later, Hermida hit his 15th homer to make it 8-3.
After another single—and Moyer was getting hit hard at that point— pitching coach Rich Dubee came out for a visit while Antonio Alfonseca hurriedly warmed up. Jacobs’ 14th homer, a two-run shot to right, made it 8-5 and ended Moyer’s day.
“Jamie’s a tough guy to really know when to get,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.
The Phillies threw five innings of scoreless relief against Florida on Saturday and allowed only one run in 4 2-3 innings in Friday night’s loss.
“A lot relied on the bullpen in this series and we had to do our job,” Myers said.
Moyer beat the Marlins for the fourth time this season and improved his career mark to 7-0 against the worst team in the NL.
“At some point, they’re going to give me a handful,” he said.
Willis (8-15) gave up seven runs in three innings and lost for the 12th time in 13 decisions.
“I’m sure he’s frustrated,” Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “We haven’t been able to get him on a roll.”
Burrell’s 27th homer in the second, a two-run shot into the left-center seats, made it 7-0. Burrell was batting only .201 on July 1 and was the No. 1 target for Philly’s boo birds. But he hit .290 in August, has 54 RBIs in his last 57 games and fans now stand and cheer every time he jogs out to left.
“He’s got better balance at the plate,” Manuel said. “When he’s looking for balls to hit, he hits them instead of fouling them back or missing them.”
Burrell’s RBI double in the fourth that made it 8-0 seemed like just another run in an early rout. Instead, it was a needed insurance run for a team making most of its games close ones.
Injured LHP Cole Hamels played catch for the second consecutive day and Manuel hopes to have his ace throw off a mound either Tuesday or Wednesday. … Chase Utley played first base for the Phillies, giving Ryan Howard a rest. Howard entered in the ninth as a defensive replacement. … Rowand made a sensational catch in the first to rob Ramirez of an extra-base hit. The center fielder crashed into the wall, his hat and sunglasses popped off, but the ball stayed in his mitt.