Phils go for back-to-back wins in opener vs. Rockies

Published August 19, 2013

| Sports Network

The Philadelphia Phillies finally secured their first victory under interim manager Ryan Sandberg. Now they'll try to win consecutive games for the first time since the All-Star break as they begin a four-game series with the Colorado Rockies on Monday night.

The Phillies have gone just 6-22 since the All-Star break and on Friday the club fired manager Charlie Manuel, replacing him with Sandberg. Things did not get off to a great start for the new skipper, with Philadelphia getting shut out by the Los Angeles Dodgers in each of Sandberg's first two games on the bench.

However, the Phils caught a break in the ninth inning of Sunday's finale, with a pair of errors by Los Angeles' Hanley Ramirez helping Philadelphia secure a 3-2 victory.

Ramirez first misfired on a Casper Wells grounder with one out in the frame and Carlos Ruiz followed with his fourth hit of the game. After pinch-hitter Jimmy Rollins was intentionally walked to load the bases, Michael Young, also pinch-hitting, hit a grounder to short that looked as though it could be an inning-ending double play.

However, Ramirez bobbled the ball and Wells crossed the plate for the winning run.

"The guys battled and doing it against the Dodgers, the way they're going right now and to salvage one win out of this series is big," Sandberg said.

Darin Ruf hit a solo homer in the fourth inning, snapping the Phillies' scoreless streak at 21 innings.

Philadelphia will now try to string together its first winning streak in a month. The Phils won their final two games before the All-Star break, then opened up the second half with a victory over the New York Mets on July 19 before beginning their tailspin.

The Rockies will try to prevent the Phillies from getting a winning run started, but will have to solve their 2013 road issues. They began a 10-game swing by dropping two of three in Baltimore and are just 22-40 on the road this season.

Colorado lost its final two meetings with Baltimore, bested 7-2 in Sunday's rubber match. Jhoulys Chacin took the loss, allowing three runs over 5 1/3 innings.

Charlie Blackmon and Yorvit Torrealba each drove in a run for the Rockies, who have not won a road series since July 8-10 at San Diego.

Torrealba, meanwhile, left the game in the eighth inning after the catcher took a foul ball off his mask. His status for this game is unknown.

Taking the hill for the Rockies will be Jeff Manship, who makes his third start with the club.

The right-hander made his Colorado debut on Aug. 8 at the New York Mets and yielded two runs over five innings in a 2-1 setback. He then faced San Diego five days later at home and was roughed up in a 7-5 defeat, yielding six runs on eight hits and two walks over five frames.

"I really wasn't making adjustments either," Manship said. "I was flying open, which really leads to bad pitches.

The 28-year-old Manship has faced the Phillies twice before in relief, allowing four runs over 7 1/3 innings.

Ethan Martin counters for Philadelphia with his fourth career start. The righty has gone 1-2 with a 6.28 ERA over the first three outings.

Martin is coming off a loss at Atlanta on Tuesday, charged with three runs in five innings of work. The 24-year-old was touched for six runs and walked twice while striking out six, giving him 16 strikeouts over 14 1/3 innings.

Martin will face the Rockies for the first time.

Colorado won two of three over the Phillies at home in mid-June, but lost five of its six games played in Philadelphia a season ago.

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2013/08/19/phils-go-for-back-to-back-wins-in-opener-vs-rockies/