Phillies take opener by the bay in ten


Aug 15, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies third baseman Cody Asche (25) and second baseman Chase Utley (26) and right fielder Marlon Byrd (3) celebrate after defeating the San Francisco Giants 5-3 at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Phillies came from behind to force ten innings and Chase Utley took one for the team as they won Friday’s series opener 5-3 against the San Francisco Giants.

Utley was hit by a pitch with the bases full in the top of the tenth inning for the go-ahead run to make it 4-3 Phillies.  Ryan Howard then followed with a sacrifice fly to pad the lead at 5-3.

The Phillies were confident Cole Hamels would deliver another quality start and he went seven innings for the third straight game.  The ace gave up nine hits and three runs when Michael Morse hit a three-run blast in the fourth.

Marlon Byrd was the first to chip away at the 3-o deficit.  Byrd answered back quickly in the top of the fifth with a home run, his 23rd this season.

The most heroic hitter of the night in the Phillies lineup, however, was Cody Asche.  The third baseman nailed a two-run homer in the eighth inning to tie the game at 3-3.

Asche’s night wasn’t over at the plate.  He started the two-run rally for the Phillies in the tenth by doubling and he scored the go-ahead run off Utley’s hit by pitch.

The Philadelphia bullpen backed Hamels’ strong outing and the offense.  Ken Giles pitched two scoreless innings, giving up two hits and striking out one.  Giles’ ERA is now 1.33 and he has a streak of six scoreless innings going.

Jonathan Papelbon pitched a perfect tenth to pick up save 28 on the season.  The closer forced groundouts for Hunter Pence, Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval.  Pence and Posey are a combined 5-for-9 with four RBIs lifetime against Papelbon.

Darin Ruf, who scored off Asche’s homer, went 2-for-4 with a double.  Ruf’s batting average has risen to .225 by hitting in each of his last three games.

The Giants’ record at home fell to 30-32 while the Phillies away record improved to 28-32.