Sunday, April 12, 2015

Herrera's first career hit lifts Phillies over Nats in 10

 Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera made his first big league hit and RBI count in a major way Saturday night at Citizens Bank Park.
He doubled to right field to score Carlos Ruiz from second base in the 10th inning to deliver a 3-2 victory over the Nationals. Herrera made the Opening Day roster as a Rule 5 Draft pick.
"I was very pleased my first base hit of my Major League career was as big as that one," Herrera said through interpreter Juan Samuel.
The Phillies tied the game with two runs in the eighth inning against Nationals right-hander Blake Treinen, who entered with a .327 opponents average against left-handed hitters. He allowed a single to Chase Utley, a double off the left-field wall to Ryan Howard, a single to Ruiz (thanks to a mixup betweenIan Desmond and Danny Espinosa) and a double to Grady Sizemore. Treinen escaped with runners on second and third and one out.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Herrera's firsts are big: The Phillies were excited about picking up Herrera in the Rule 5 Draft in December, and he did not disappoint with a strong Spring Training. They hope his clutch hit Saturday is a sign of things to come. More >
Ramos goes yard: The Nationals took a one-run lead in the fourth inning, when Wilson Ramos swung at an 0-1 pitch and hit the ball over the right-field wall. It was Ramos' first home run of the season.
Change that scouting report: Ben Revere is not known for his arm, but threw out Michael Taylor at the plate in the 10th inning to keep the game tied. It was a huge play. More >
Fister has quality start: The right-hander was roughed up during Spring Training, but his season debut was a different story. He pitched 6 1/3 innings of shutout ball and allowed six hits. He also induced 12 ground-ball outs. More >
Hamels bounces back: Hamels allowed four home runs in five innings Monday in an Opening Day loss to the Red Sox, but he rebounded nicely against the Nationals. He allowed two hits, one run, two walks and struck out five in seven innings. His only hiccup came in the fourth inning, when Ramos hit a 0-1 fastball for a home run.
Getting that run in: The Nationals went 2-for-8 with runners in scoring position, and the first of those two hits came in the eighth inning off right-hander Jeanmar Gomez. After leading off with a double, Espinosa advanced to third on a wild pitch. Clint Robinson then entered the game as a pinch-hitter for Matt Thornton and singled over the drawn-in infield to make it a two-run game. In the 10th inning, Yunel Escobar singled to left field against right-hander Dustin McGowan, but Michael Taylor was thrown out at home plate.
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Hamels should be accustomed to the lack of run support. He entered Saturday 86th out of 88 qualifying pitchers in baseball in run-support average from 2013-15. Hamels has averaged just 3.41 runs of support over the last two-plus seasons. Only Eric Stults (3.23) and Nathan Eovaldi (2.75) have had fared worse.
THERE SHE IS ...
Miss America 2014 Nina Davuluri threw out the ceremonial first pitch before the game.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
In the seventh inning, Desmond hit a slow roller to third baseman Andres Blanco, who nipped Desmond for the second out of the inning. But the Nationals challenged the call and, after 1:42, the call stood.
WHAT'S NEXT
Nationals: Right-hander Max Scherzer will make his second start as a member of the Nationals. In his first start, Scherzer (0-1) pitched 7 2/3 innings, allowed three unearned runs on four hits and struck out eight batters against the Mets. He retired 17 straight hitters at one point and had a no-hitter going with two outs in the sixth inning.
Phillies: Right-hander Sean O'Sullivan was reassigned to Minor League camp in March, but he becomes the Phillies' No. 5 starter Sunday in the series finale against the Nationals. The Phillies expected Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez or Kevin Slowey to possibly be the No. 5, but both underperformed in camp.

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