The Philadelphia Phillies took the first game of the NLCS over the Los Angeles Dodgers, 8-6, thanks to a big fifth inning, and two three-run homers by Carlos Ruiz and Raul Ibanez.
The Dodgers were helped out by a huge Manny Ramirez home run in the fifth and rallied in the eighth inning to come within two; however, Brad Lidge – who everyone knows struggled in 2009 in save opportunities – was not perfect in the ninth inning on Thursday, but got the very important save.
Philadelphia’s Cole Hamels got the win; however, he was far from good as he only 5 1/3 and gave up four runs on eight hits. Los Angeles’ Clayton Kershaw shined for four innings, and then struggled mightily in the fifth inning and took the loss, only going 4 2/3 innings and allowing runs on four hits.
The Dodgers took a 1-0 lead off a solo homer by James Loney in the second inning; however, Kershaw lost his effectiveness in the fifth inning as he got a tad wild. He allowed two men to get on base, and then catcher Carlos Ruiz took him deep for a three-run homer to give Philadelphia a 3-1 lead.