Braves 5, Phillies 0
Game 31 - Friday Night, May 6th in Philadelphia
One Sentence Summary: Cliff Lee was done in by a few bad pitches as his 16 strikeouts weren't enough to overcome Derek Lowe and the Braves.
What It Means: Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the opposing pitcher. The Phillies record is now at 21-10.
What Went Wrong: The Phils were no-hit by Lowe until Shane Victorino singled to left to start the seventh. Victorino would advance to third on Placido Polanco's ground rule double, but both runners would be stranded as reliever Eric O'Flaherty struck out Ryan Howard, Ben Francisco and Raul Ibanez to end the inning and any hope of a rally.
Lee probably only threw four bad pitches all night, all in the third inning - Alex Gonzalez doubled on a ball Ibanez maybe should have caught, Chipper Jones singled on a ball that just glanced off Jimmy Rollins' glove (scoring Gonzalez), Brian McCann doubled (scoring Jones), and Dan Uggla doubled (scoring McCann). Other than that quick succession of hits, Lee was flawless.
What Went Right: As mentioned at the end of the radio broadcast, Lee (16), J.C. Romero (1) and Danys Baez (1), set a franchise record with 18 total strikeouts in a nine-inning game.
Featured Card: I usually don't feature a baseball card for a current Phillie following a loss, even though Lee could certainly make the case to be featured tonight. (I'm fairly positive he doesn't frequent this blog.) Instead, this is Steve Carlton's 1982 Donruss card, which appears to show Lefty warming up in foul territory. With his 16-strikeout performance tonight, Lee tied Carlton for the most strikeouts ever by a Phillies left-handed pitcher in a nine-inning game. Carlton performed the feat back on June 9, 1982, against the Cubs.
Amazingly enough, lefty Chris Short struck out 18 Mets over 15 innings on October 2, 1965.
Other Stuff: Roy Oswalt will miss his scheduled start tomorrow night as his back continues to bother him, and Kyle Kendrick will take his place. It's possible the Phillies could place both Oswalt and Carlos Ruiz (bad back as well) on the disabled list before tomorrow's game.