Phillies Drop To Last In The Natinonal League

Thursday, April 19th 2007, 7:55 am
By: News On 6

The floundering Phillies dropped to the bottom of the National League with their latest loss and Barry Bonds reached the water with his latest homer.

Philadelphia became the worst team in the league Wednesday night, losing 5-4 to the Washington Nationals in 13 innings on Felipe Lopez's sacrifice fly.

The Phillies went 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base.

``Everything is bitter around here,'' Philadelphia's Shane Victorino said. ``Sometimes you'd rather just walk out there and lose by 15 and walk off the field in the ninth. It's so frustrating. We're one hit away, we're one pitch away. It seems like we're one thing away from doing what we need to do, and it's just not falling into place.''

Philadelphia, expected to challenge for an NL East crown, dropped to an NL-worst 3-10, a game behind the rebuilding Nationals (5-10).

At the top of the East, the first-place Braves and Mets (one-half game back) were winners again. Atlanta rallied for three runs in the bottom of the seventh to beat the Cubs 8-6. Mets starter John Maine pitched six innings of no-hit ball and New York pounded Dontrelle Willis in a 9-2 victory over Florida.

Maine's bid to become the first Mets pitcher to throw a no-hitter ended when Miguel Cabrera lined a single to lead off the seventh. Later in the night, it was Mark Buehrle of the Chicago White Sox throwing the first no-hitter of the season in a 6-0 victory over Texas.

In San Francisco, Bonds' 738th career homer reached McCovey Cove behind the right-field fence for the 33rd time and tied the game against St. Louis at 5 in the eighth. The Giants won it 6-5 in the 12th on Rich Aurilia's RBI single.

The 42-year-old Bonds moved within 18 homers of breaking Hank Aaron's all-time record of 755 with his fourth homer of the season. The Cardinals' Ryan Franklin became the 437th different pitcher to surrender a home run to the seven-time NL MVP.

Josh Hancock (0-1) took the loss. Rookie Jonathan Sanchez (1-0) pitched three innings for the win.

Albert Pujols hit a towering two-run homer for the visiting Cardinals.

In other NL games it was: Houston 7, Cincinnati 2; Milwaukee 7, Pittsburgh 3; Colorado 7, Los Angeles 2; Arizona 5, San Diego 2 in 12 innings.

Before the Phillies played the Nationals in a battle for last-place, Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel said that he was moving ace Brett Myers to the bullpen to bolster a relief staff that has been a major weakness. Manuel mentioned the surprising move after talking to reporters about his run-in Tuesday night with a radio talk-show host.

It's been that kind of strange first 2 1/2 weeks of the season for Phillies, who tied Wednesday night's game with a run in the ninth only to see the Nationals bounce back.

Francisco Rosario (0-1) was the 15th pitcher to enter the game, the seventh for the Phillies, when he went to the mound for the bottom of the 13th. He gave up a single to Chris Snelling, followed by a double to Michael Restovich, called up from Triple-A Columbus earlier in the day.

That brought up Lopez, who lofted a ball to left field that was deep enough to score Snelling, ending the game after 4 hours, 16 minutes.

``We didn't give up, and that's the best thing about this team,'' Snelling said. ``We could have easily given up, but we didn't.''

As fireworks went off beyond center field, the Nationals swarmed around Snelling, and chased Lopez across the field for congratulatory hugs.

Levale Speigner (1-0) earned his first major league victory with a perfect 13th.

Mets 9, Marlins 2

John Maine took a no-hitter into the seventh inning and visiting New York scored four times before Dontrelle Willis retired a batter.

Maine (2-0) struck out seven and walked four in seven innings, and allowed Joe Borchard's two-run homer.

David Wright, who went 2-for-5, extended his career-best hitting streak to 25 games, a franchise record over two seasons for the Mets.

Willis (3-1) allowed 10 hits and eight runs in five innings. The left-hander fell to 12-2 in April and 11-3 against the Mets.

Braves 8, Cubs 6

At Atlanta, Jeff Francoeur hit a three-run homer and Kelly Johnson added a clutch two-run single for the Braves.

Johnson hit a two-out single in the seventh to drive in two and put Atlanta up 7-6. Edgar Renteria added another run-scoring single off Scott Eyre (0-1) to give the Braves a two-run lead.

Oscar Villarreal (1-0) earned the win. Bob Wickman got three outs for his fifth save in as many chances.

Astros 7, Reds 2

Jason Lane hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning, completing a rally that lifted visiting Houston.

Lance Berkman singled home the tying run for the Astros with two outs in the eighth off Todd Coffey (1-1). Chris Sampson (2-0) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings for Houston.

Brandon Phillips and Josh Hamilton homered for the Reds.

Brewers 7, Pirates 3

Claudio Vargas struck out a career-high 11 over six innings and Bill Hall drove in three runs to lead host Milwaukee. Vargas (1-0) finished his evening with two strikeouts to end the sixth.

Jason Bay hit a solo homer in the second, the 100th of his career and 99th with Pittsburgh. Paul Maholm (0-2) gave up 10 hits and five runs in six innings.

Rockies 7, Dodgers 2

Yorvit Torrealba hit a go-ahead, two-run single and host Colorado took advantage of a shaky outing by Derek Lowe.

Matt Holliday went 3-for-4 with a double.

Lowe (2-2) was pulled after 4 2-3 innings. He gave up four earned runs and eight hits.

Taylor Buchholz (1-0) pitched two innings for his first win since July 6 for Houston against St. Louis.

Diamondbacks 5, Padres 2, 12 innings

Eric Byrnes singled in the go-ahead run with two outs in the 12th inning and visiting Arizona got a career-high 13 strikeouts from Brandon Webb.

Scott Hairston started the winning rally with a two-out double off Mike Thompson (0-1). Orlando Hudson added a two-run double.

Tony Pena (1-1) pitched a perfect 11th. Jose Valverde pitched the 12th for his seventh save in eight chances.