The 2014 Philadelphia Phillies aren’t exactly the most likely candidates to comeback from a 5-o deficit, but a late rally in the ninth inning of Tuesday’s game certainly made things interesting for the visiting Seattle Mariners.
Perhaps Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon could have saved himself a bit of anxiety if he’d have stayed with his starter Hisashi Iwakuma to go the distance. Instead he brought in Charlie Furbush, Yoervis Medina and closer Fernando Rodney.
Jimmy Rollins started the inning by drawing a walk, but was out after Chase Utley grounded into a fielder’s choice. Ryan Howard then struck out as the Phillies were down to their last out. Marlon Byrd singled and advanced to second on a fielder’s indifference to keep the Phillies hopes alive. A Medina wild pitch scored Utley and Domonic Brown came through with an RBI double. Things got even more tense as Carlos Ruiz was hit by Medina, causing a pitching change.
The tying run came to the plate as Cody Asche was set up for ninth-inning heroics.
Fernando Rodney got Asche to go down swinging as he performed his famous bow and arrow bit after picking up his 36th save of the season.
A.J. Burnett, who started for the Phillies, put in 7.2 inning of work with 125 pitches thrown. He struck out nine while allowing five earned runs. The loss puts him at 6-14 on the season.
The Phillies late start to getting on the board was mostly due to Iwakuma’s dominance over eight shutout innings. The right-hander mowed down hitters with ease and allowed just four hits. He struck out 11 Phillies, including Byrd three times. Of the 28 batters he faced, 20 of them saw first-pitch strikes.
On his bobblehead night, Ryan Howard went 1-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts.
The Phillies moved to 27-37 at Citizen’s Bank Park in 2014.