Welcome to the newest edition of these retro scorecard recap articles, where I travel back into the slightly distant past of the Philadelphia Phillies and bust out one of my scorecards on the anniversary of a game I attended. This time, we'll be going back 19 years to a June 1, 2004 game between the Phils and the New York Mets.
It's the inaugural season of beautiful new Citizens Bank Park, and the rival Mets are in town for their first ever visit. The Mets have taken the series opener the previous night by a 5-3 final score, and now the Phils look to even things up on this Tuesday evening behind supposed ace Kevin Millwood. Al Leiter goes for the visitors.
Among the notable elements of this game is the fact that Mike PIazza was starting at first base for the Mets, as 2004 was the lone season where they experimented with moving him out of the catcher spot with any kind of regularity since he had become increasingly horrible behind the plate. Also, Bobby Abreu was getting a rare night off for the Phils, with Jason Michaels playing right field and also batting third for some reason. I guess Larry Bowa had decided to stop caring.
At any rate, both Millwood and Leiter start tossing up zeroes, and we get all the way to the bottom of the sixth, still scoreless. Leiter is actually removed from the game at this point after throwing 84 pitches over his five shutout frames. David Weathers is the first man out of the bullpen for New York, and he keeps the scoreless trend going. Millwood tosses a clean top of the seventh, and then is removed for pinch hitter Ricky Ledee in the bottom half of the inning. Ledee reaches against Weathers, and he begins scooting around the bases thanks to a balk and a groundout. Finally, Doug Glanville brings him home with an RBI single, and the Phillies have drawn first blood. On to the eighth inning we go.
Rheal Cormier takes the mound for the Phillies as he attempts to keep the Mets off the board. It does not go well. Leading off the inning, former Phil Todd Zeile jumps on a 3-1 pitch and drives it over the wall in left to tie the game. Cormier then retires Cliff Floyd, and Ryan Madson comes in to finish the inning without incident.
Lefty specialist Mike Stanton comes in solely to face Jim Thome to lead off the bottom of the eighth, and he strikes him out swinging. That's all for Stanton, of course, and in comes Ricky Bottalico. Yes, you read that right. Ricky Bo coming in for the Mets. Bottalico wraps strikeouts of Pat Burrell and Todd Pratt around a David Bell single, and we're headed to the ninth tied 1-1.
Tim Worrell emerges from the Phillies bullpen, and he allows a leadoff single to Eric Valent, of all people. But Worrell does his job, and the Phillies have their shot to win in the home half. With one out, Tomas Perez walks, then moves up to second on a hit by Jimmy Rollins. Bobby Abreu then comes on to pinch hit for Glanville, and he nearly wins the game by flying out to deep center field. Ricky Bo then strikes out Michaels to end the threat, and we're headed to extras.
Worrell is still in there for the Phillies, and it proves to be a mistake. Kazuo Matsui leads off with a single, steals second, then comes around to score on an RBI hit by Zeile. Two batters later, pinch hitter Vance Wilson strokes a two-run home run to make it 4-1 Mets, and this one is over. Braden Looper comes in close things down. He allows a leadoff single to Thome, but that's all she wrote, as the Mets take it 4-1. This one goes down as a win for Bottalico, his only career W against the Phillies. The Mets would go on to complete the sweep the following day, and the Phillies would have to wait another month for their first victory at Citizens Bank Park over their hated rivals.