Phillies 3, Braves 2 (10 Innings)
Game 89 - Friday Night, July 8th in Philadelphia
One Sentence Summary: Rain delayed the start of this game by nearly two hours and then the Phillies needed extra innings to defeat the Braves, 3-2.
What It Means: It's way too soon to start thinking about the postseason, but this is an important series nevertheless. The win increased the Phils lead over the Braves to 3 1/2 games in the division and their record is now 56-33.
What Went Right: Raul Ibanez hit a solo home run to right off reliever Scott Proctor to deliver the walk-off win for the Phils. The Braves and Phillies had previously traded runs in the second and fourth innings and the game remained tied 2-2 until Ibanez' heroics in the tenth. Wilson Valdez (sac fly in the second) and Carlos Ruiz (solo home run in the fourth) drove in the team's first two runs.
Roy Halladay may have been a little out of sync because of the delay, but he still managed to pitch seven solid innings, allowing just the two runs on six hits while striking out seven and walking none.
Featured Card: Lefty reliever Juan Perez (1-0), pitching in just his third game for the Phillies, made a little history last night. In the top of the tenth, Perez struck out the side - Jason Heyward, Nate McLouth and Wilkin Ramirez - on nine pitches. He became the first Phillie to perform the feat since Andy Ashby did it back on June 15, 1991 against the Reds.
Perez, who has played professional baseball since 2000, was the pitcher of record when Ibanez hit his shot, giving him his first career victory. This is his card from the 2011 Lehigh Valley IronPigs' team set.
Transaction: Shane Victorino's thumb finally landed him on the disabled list, costing him a trip to Phoenix for the All-Star game. Infielder Pete Orr was recalled to take his roster spot as Placido Polanco continues to battle back problems.
Congrats: Congratulations to Mike Trout who made his Major League debut last night for the Angels. Mike is from my hometown of Millville, New Jersey, and everyone back home has been pulling for the kid since his days as a Thunderbolt.