Roy Halladay never pitches very well in the first inning. It is the only inning that Doc actually looks like a human. This is one of baseball’s many axioms that never made very much sense to me. “You have to get to an ace pitcher early.” I may not understand it, but it continues to hold water as Roy Halladay, the guy who threw a no-hitter in his first playoff start, allowed three runs in the top of the first inning in this year’s first playoff game.
Rafael Furcal continued the trend of the first batter of the game getting on base by getting on base. It looked like Halladay pitched around Albert Pujols to put two runners on for Lance Berkman. Berkman responded by hitting a first pitch sinker off the second deck in right field. It got really quiet in Citizen’s Bank Park. There have been stretches during this season in which the Phillies had a little trouble scoring runs, making a three run deficit before anyone had an at bat a little disconcerting.
Kyle Loshe retired the first ten batters he faced throwing about 25 pitches over his first three innings. The decision to start Lohse in the opening game looked like a stroke of genius from a manager that considers himself one of the best in the game. You have to get to aces early, but Lohse is certainly not an ace. The Phillies scratched a run across in the fourth inning on an RBI single following a dropped pop up by David Freese and knocked Kyle from the game in the sixth. His final line in 5 1/3 innings, allowing seven hits and six runs. Tony LaRussa is a pompous jerk.
Halladay overcame his shaky first start and retired every single batter he faced after allowing a single to Skip Schumaker in the second inning. Eight innings, THREE HITS, three runs and eight strikeouts. He is an absolute bad ass.
Ryan Howard dd not have a home run in last years’ playoffs. He hit one today. He put the Phillies ahead with a second deck home run after a great at bat in the sixth inning. This blast was followed by a two run home run from Raul Ibanez. The offense added three runs in the seventh and two more runs in the eighth. Out of the 1-6 batters in the order, only Ryan Howard did not have a multi hit night. The offense as a whole totaled fourteen hits and eleven runs. Tony LaRussa remains a jerk after being smashed 11-6.
Next, Cliff Lee gets the start with Chris Carpenter making the first start of his career on three days rest.