Phillies 8, Padres 6
Game 99 - Saturday Afternoon, July 23rd in Philadelphia
One Sentence Summary: Powered by big home runs from Ryan Howard, Michael Martinez and Chase Utley, the Phillies came from behind to down the Padres, 8-6.
What It Means: The Phillies improved to 63-36 and since the Braves lost today, they now have a five game lead in the East.
What Went Right: Utley hit a three-run home in the first to start the scoring for the Phils, and his solo home run in the seventh completed the team's offensive output for the day. In between, Howard led off the seventh with a pinch-hit home run to center on the first pitch he saw and Martinez followed a few batters later with a three-run shot to right.
Starter Kyle Kendrick pitched effectively through the first five innings, but ran into trouble in the sixth when he allowed three runs. Ryan Madson came on in the ninth to record his 17th save.
Featured Card: I acquired a small lot of Phillies 2011 Topps Allen & Ginter cards on eBay, including the complete base team set and the Phillies cards in the Hometown Heroes and Baseball Highlight Sketches insert sets. I like the look of the Allen & Ginter set this year, moreso than in the past few years. The addition of the team logo to the front of the card is a welcome addition. I'm going to try to track down a few more of the insert, autograph and relic Phillies cards from the set, and my updated 2011 Phillies wantlist can be found here.
Field Report: We persevered through this one with the rest of the sold-out crowd at Citizens Bank Park this afternoon. With a game-time temperature of 100 degrees, to say it was crazy hot is a ridiculous understatement. The slight breeze was hot, the seats were hot, we were hot. At one point, my soft pretzel actually burst into flames. The Phillies are now 8-3 in games I've attended this year.