After losing the previous two games by a combined score of 32-2, Phillips and the Cincinnati Reds were willing to do whatever it takes to win.
“It really woke us up,” Phillips said of Cincinnati’s 22-1 loss Monday night. “We came in, said we have to wake up, do the little things and we can’t let the same things happen.”
One night after their biggest offensive outburst in 24 years, the Phillies squandered several opportunities. They stranded 12 runners and went 0 for 5 with a runner on third and less than two outs.
“The way we had guys standing on third base, if we knock them in, we could have five runs,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.
“Before he went up, I said, ‘Man, I know you hit two homers, but I need you to bunt him over,”’ Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “He said, ‘No problem.”’
It was Phillips’ second sacrifice of the season.
“You have to learn how to do the fundamentals,” Phillips said. “Little kids out there don’t think bunting is important. If I didn’t get it down, we’d still be playing.”
In the bottom of the eighth, Votto saved a run with a nice play at first base. He fielded Jimmy Rollins’(notes) sharp grounder and made a strong throw to nail John Mayberry(notes) Jr. trying to score from third.
Phillips hit a two-run homer to right in the fourth and his solo shot to left with two outs in the sixth tied it at 3.
Happ allowed three runs and six hits, striking out a career-high seven in seven sharp innings. The rookie left-hander remained unbeaten in nine starts since replacing Chan Ho Park(notes) in the rotation.
Howard snapped a homerless drought when he launched a drive off the brick batter’s eye in straightaway center leading off Philadelphia’s second. The All-Star first baseman hadn’t gone deep in his last 49 at-bats.
Werth followed with an opposite-field shot to right-center to make it 2-0.
Rollins and Shane Victorino(notes) hit consecutive singles to start the Phillies’ third. Chase Utley(notes) followed with an RBI double for a 3-0 lead. After Howard walked to load the bases, Harang struck out Werth, retired Greg Dobbs(notes) on an infield fly and Pedro Feliz(notes) grounded out.
“The biggest thing is I stayed relaxed and focused on executing the pitches,” Harang said. “That was a big point in the game.”
NOTES: Phillies LF Raul Ibanez(notes) went 1 for 2 with a strikeout, walk and scored a run in a rehab start at Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Ibanez, a first-time All-Star, has been sidelined with a groin injury since mid-June. … The Reds called up RHP Robert Manuel from Triple-A Louisville and optioned INF Drew Sutton(notes). … Werth has five homers in the last 10 games. … Ibanez, Howard, Utley and Werth each are on pace to hit 35 homers and drive in 100 runs for the Phillies. … Phillips has five career multihomer games.