Phils target series victory over Rockies

The Philadelphia Phillies try to lock up a series victory on Thursday night as they conclude a four-game series with the Colorado Rockies.

The Phillies have won just one series since the All-Star break, putting together an 8-22 record in the second half. However, they have won two of the first three games of this set, winning in walk-off fashion on Wednesday night.

The Rockies carried a one-run lead into the ninth inning after Nolan Arenado's RBI single in the eighth, but Rafael Betancourt yielded a pair of runs in the ninth to suffer a 4-3 defeat and blow just his second save in 18 chances this year.

He gave up a double to start the ninth and pinch-hitter Carlos Ruiz later ripped a double to left to plate the tying run. After Jimmy Rollins was intentionally walked, Michael Young lined a single down the left-field line to chase home Ruiz for the winner.

"He's usually right on the corners," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said of Betancourt. "I think he got some balls on the plate tonight and they put the barrel on them."

Chase Utley cracked a solo homer for the Phillies, who have won three of their last four.

"Everybody on the bench, I see them at the top rail in the ninth inning. There's a lot of energy in the dugout, a lot of guys pulling for each other. That's all good," said Phils interim manager Ryan Sandberg. "When you pull out a game like this, I think that pay dividends and goes a long way with the games ahead of us."

Wilin Rosario smacked a solo homer for the Rockies, who have dropped four of their last five contests. They also lost a chance to win their first road series since July 8-10 at San Diego.

Kyle Kendrick, who turns 29 on Monday, gets the call tonight for the Phillies and has lost four of his past five starts. Philadelphia has been shut out in his last two trips to the hill, with Kendrick taking a tough-luck 5-0 defeat on Saturday versus the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Kendrick gave up just two runs -- one earned -- over six innings and fell to 10-10 with a 4.36 earned run average in 25 starts this season.

The right-hander is 3-2 lifetime versus the Rockies with a 5.47 ERA in 10 meetings (9 starts). He struggled in a no-decision at Colorado on June 14 as he gave up seven runs and 10 hits over 4 1/3 innings, touched for a pair of homers.

The Rockies counter with Chad Bettis, who is coming off his shortest start since making his MLB debut at the beginning of August.

The 24-year-old righty lasted just 2 2/3 innings of a loss in Baltimore on Saturday, giving up eight runs. However, only two were earned thanks to a one- out error by Troy Tulowitzki during the Orioles' seven-run third inning.

Still, Bettis was not happy with his outing after allowing seven hits and four walks.

"It was really embarrassing," Bettis said. "I have a lot to learn from this start and that's all I have to take from it."

Bettis is 0-2 with a 5.30 ERA in his four starts and will make his fourth appearance on the road.

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.