Friday, October 9, 2009

Playoff Reflections: ALDS & NLDS, Thursday

Rockies vs. Phillies: The Colorado Rockies went into the City of Brotherly Love Thursday afternoon and pulled off a close 5-4 victory to tie their series at one. The Rockies took an early 4-0 lead off Philadephia ace Cole Hamels, greatly aided by Yorvit Torrealba's two-run homer in the fourth inning, and never looked back. The game looked bleak at points for the Phillies; however, they fought back hard, but fell short.

Trailing 4-0, the Fighting Phils came within one of the lead in the sixth inning as they were bouyed by RBI-double by Ryan Howard and a two-run single by Raul Ibanez. Colorado got an insurance run off a Dexter Fowler sacrifice fly in the seventh, and Jayson Werth for Philadelphia homered in the eighth inning off Rafael Betancourt.

The Phillies tried to rally in the bottom of the ninth as they got runners on first and second off closer Huston Street; however, Shane Victorino lined out to Colorado second baseman Garrett Atkins to end the contest.

Cole Hamels took the loss as he only went five innings and gave up four runs; however, the day was not all bad for him as he left the game to be with his wife -- who was in labor at a hospital. Meanwhile, Aaron Cook earned the win as he went five innings and gave up three runs. Huston Street got the save in the ninth inning.

Cardinals vs. Dodgers:

Poor Matt Holliday. He's a great offensive player and all-around good guy, but could he have perhaps cost the Cardinals a chance to advance, much less Thursday's game. Yes. They had two outs, and the Cardinals just needed one to end the game; however, Holliday dropped a flyball by James Loney and let him advanced to second. Things fell apart from there, as Ronnie Belliard plated in the tying run and with the bases loaded, veteran Mark Loretta drove in the winning one, as the Dodgers beat the Cardinals, 3-2.

The Cardinals wasted a great start by Adam Wainwright, who went eight strong innings, was beyond nasty and put them in a position where they could have tied the series. Now, they have to survive.

They took a 1-0 lead in the first inning off a Matt Holliday solo homer; however, the Dodgers tied the game at one as Andre Etheir homered -- a solo shot. The Cardinals took a 2-1 lead in the seventh as Colby Rasmus' deep double plated in a run.

The Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw -- the young southpaw -- started the game and was solid, going 6 2/3 innings and allowing two runs on nine hits. Observing that way Kershaw pitched on Thursday, I see future star written all over him. Obviously being on the East Coast, I don't see a lot of the Dodgers, but did Kershaw ever impress me.

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