Phillies Shutout the Blue Jays
By Matt Veasey
In the opener of a four game home-and-home series, the Phillies shut out and beat up the host Toronto Blue Jays.
Behind a masterful performance from starting pitcher Jerad Eickhoff and a big effort from the offensive lineup, this one was all Phillies, especially in the later innings.
Eickhoff (4-8) was outstanding for a second straight start, allowing just three hits over six innings. He did walk four batters, but generally kept the Jays’ hitters off-balance all night long.
The Phillies defeated the Blue Jays by a 7-0 score at Rogers Centre in Canada. It was the opener of a four gamer between the two teams, the first two north of the border, and the final two back in South Philly.
Toronto’s 41-year old veteran knuckleballer R.A. Dickey was credited with a Quality Start, but he was again mediocre for the hosts. Dickey went 6.1 innings, allowing three earned runs on five hits and two walks.
With the Designated Hitter in use for these first two games in the American League park, Ryan Howard was dusted off and placed into manager Pete Mackanin‘s batting order.
Howard responded, leading off the top of the 7th against Dickey by blasting his 10th home run of the season over the right field fence.
Odubel Herrera went deep off Dickey in the top of the 3rd inning, his 6th longball of the year getting the Phillies on the board first. He would go 2-5 with a run and three RBI on the night.
“He’s fun to watch,” Mackanin said of Herrera, per MLB.com contributors. “You just never know. He can look so bad for two pitches and then hit a home run; he can look so bad for two at-bats, and then all of a sudden, come through with a big hit off a lefty. He’s amazing.”
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Cesar Hernandez and Peter Bourjos, hitting in the 8th and 9th spots in the Phils’ order, went a combined 4-8 with two runs and three RBI.
In relief of Eickhoff, the Phillies got yeoman work from their bullpen. David Hernandez, Hector Neris, and Andrew Bailey combined to shut the Blue Jays out. Each allowed just one hit, and the trio combined for three strikeouts and one walk.
With the win, the Phillies snapped a four game losing streak, while also putting an end to a three game winning streak of the Jays. The Canadian portion of the series concludes with a Tuesday afternoon game.