Ryan Howard helps Phillies overcome Marlins

Walter Villa, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

MIAMI - To hear Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel tell it, the best thing about facing Miami Marlins rookie right-hander Jose Fernandez is when you no longer have to face him.
Ryan Howard scored the tiebreaking run in the sixth inning and added a two-run single in the seventh to lead the Phillies to a 7-3 win over Miami Tuesday night in front of 13,996 at Marlins Park.
Fernandez, who got a no-decision, left after five innings and the score tied 1-1. He threw 79 pitches - 52 of them for strikes - and allowed one walk and five hits, including a solo homer by Delmon Young.
In 18 innings against the Phillies this season, Fernandez has allowed a combined total of just eight hits and one run.
"We were a little more patient against him this time," Manuel said when asked to compare the two previous games against Fernandez. "We were able to put up some good swings.
"But one of the best things about it was when they took him out."
Howard went 0 for 2 against Fernandez. But he went 3-for-3 with three RBI against the Marlins' bullpen as the Phillies (22-24) improved their road record to 11-12.
Two of Howard's hits were against lefty relievers Duane Below and Wade LeBlanc.
"When he starts hitting lefties, that means he is seeing the ball better," Manuel said of Howard, who had missed the two previous games with knee soreness. "It was good to see him out there."
The win went to young right-hander Tyler Cloyd (1-0). The 2012 Class AAA International League Pitcher of the Year, Cloyd went seven innings and lasted 105 pitches, allowing eight hits and two runs.
"I was able to stay down in the zone and throw my sinker and cutter when I needed to," said Cloyd, who is 3-2 in the big leagues since making his debut last August.
Cloyd, who started the year at Triple A, has made two good starts with the big club this season. In fact, with a 2.70 ERA with the Phillies this season, he is pitching much better up here than he was down at Triple A.
"Hopefully," Cloyd said when asked if he made a strong case to remain in the majors. "I think (at Triple A) I was trying to do too much."
As for the Marlins, a win would have tied a season high with their third straight win. Instead, the last-place Marlins sank to 13-33, including 2-6 on their current homestand, which concludes Wednesday.
Marlins manager Mike Redmond said he thought Fernandez wasn't as sharp as usual Tuesday night.
"He battled," Redmond said. "But it wasn't easy for him."
Fernandez said he "struggled" with his location.
"I have to correct it," he said.
Trailing 1-0 on Young's fourth-inning solo homer, the Marlins tied the score after Placido Polanco hit a leadoff double in the fifth and advanced to third on a grounder to second base by Rob Brantly.
Redmond decided to lift Fernandez for a pinch hitter, and the move paid off when Jordan Brown hit a sacrifice fly to left, tying the score 1-1.
The Phillies took the lead for good in the sixth. Facing Below, Howard started the Phillies' winning rally by beating the shift with a single to right. He reached third on a double by Delmon Young and scored on Domonic Brown's grounder to second.
The Phillies broke the game open with four runs in the seventh, starting the rally with an infield single by Jimmy Rollins and a bunt single by Ben Revere.
Reliever Ryan Webb came in and allowed Michael Young's infield single to load the bases with no outs. Howard then got a 2-1 pitch and smacked a single to right field to give the Phillies a 4-1 lead.
The Phillies tacked on two more runs in the inning on a run-scoring ground out by Young and a run-scoring double by Brown.
NOTES: Phillies second baseman Chase Utley missed the game after suffering a ribcage injury during batting practice. Manuel said more will be known about the injury on Wednesday. ... Marlins RF Giancarlo Stanton is scheduled to take batting practice Wednesday as he attempts to recover from a hamstring injury. He has been on the disabled list since April 30. ... Marlins RHP Nathan Eovaldi is expected to throw a bullpen session Saturday. He is recovering from a shoulder injury and could return by mid-June. ... Marlins RHP Henderson Alvarez, who has been out all season due to a shoulder injury, threw 20 pitches off a mound Tuesday. He is at least a month away from returning.

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