Tim Lincecum was dazzling through eight innings against the Phillies on Wednesday. Too bad games take nine innings and maybe a little extra. Lincecum only gave up one run on three hits in 8.1 innings of work. Ryan Howard’s solo home run was the only blemish of the day for the dominant right-hander. Cole Hamels didn’t have a terrible outing. Hamels gave up four runs on nine hits in six innings of work. He also had 10 strikeouts on the afternoon. However, his four walks are what got Hamels into trouble. Hamels ended up with the bases loaded in the 6th inning and walked in a run. Edgar Renteria then hit a bases loaded two run single to put the Giants up 4-1.
The Phillies went into the 9th inning down 4-1. They loaded up the bases against Giants closer Brian Wilson. Jayson Werth stepped up with two outs in the 9th inning and delivered. Werth hit a bases clearing double to tie the game up at 4. David Herndon pitched a scoreless 9th inning to get the game into extra innings. Brian Schneider was hit by a pitch in the 10th inning and scored on a wild pitch by left-hander Jeremy Affeldt. The Phillies led 5-4 when Ryan Madson had another save opportunity. Needless to say, he blew another one. The Phillies and Giants were tied at 5 heading into the 11th inning. Wilson Valdez put the Phillies ahead with an RBI double off Sergio Romo. They added an insurance run on a misplayed fly ball. The Phillies went on to win 7-6 with Nelson Figueroa recording his first career save.
The Phillies were able to salvage a game from this Giants series. The offense finally woke up in the 9th inning to produce enough runs for a victory. Once again, the bullpen was the weakness in today’s game. Ryan Madson blew another save this season. Madson is just not cut out for the closer role. He is clearly the setup guy and shouldn’t be in the closer role at all. Brad Lidge is set to come off the disabled list on Friday, so hopefully Lidge can return to his 2008 form. The Phillies need Lidge to be effective this year if they want any shot at a return trip to the Fall Classic. Hopefully the offense is finally hitting its stride. Jayson Werth continues to carry the Phillies offense and has really been the only consistent hitter. Hopefully this continues going forward.