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Philadelphia at Washington

W: G. Geary (4-0) L: L. Hernandez (5-6)
HR: PHI - P. Burrell (16)   WAS - None

Burrell homer ruins strong outing by Hernandez

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

WASHINGTON -- Pat Burrell's ability to make an in-game adjustment against Livan Hernandez helped the Philadelphia Phillies end a two-game slide.

Burrell's two-run homer off Hernandez sparked a five-run rally in the eighth inning, and Philadelphia beat the Washington Nationals 6-2 on Saturday.

"He's tough against our team and I think he's faced us enough (that) he knows the tendency of our hitters," Burrell said. "I was a little out in front most of the day on him, and he has the ability to do that, he always has."

But Burrell -- who was 5-for-29 during the Phillies' 11-game road trip before facing Hernandez in the eighth -- waited until the right-hander left a ball over the plate. Despite his slump, Burrell still has three homers and nine RBI during the trip.

"I haven't been swinging the bat at all, or very good at all," he said. "I'm really still not. To be able to come up big for the team late in the game when it's on the line, that's the most important."

With their bullpen spent after a 12-inning victory Friday night, the Nationals needed a long outing from Hernandez, who had won four straight starts. Fighting flu symptoms, the right-hander gritted his way through seven innings, then faltered in the eighth as Washington lost for only the second time in 10 games.

Bobby Abreu led off with a hard grounder that handcuffed second baseman Jose Vidro for an infield hit. Burrell drove Hernandez's next pitch, his 118th of the game, over the left-field wall for his 16th homer, erasing a 2-1 deficit.

"He hit it out -- nothing you can do with that," Hernandez said. "He's a power hitter. I left the ball up and he hit it out."

Nationals manager Frank Robinson defended his decision to stick with Hernandez so long and said it had more to do with the pitcher's effectiveness than the tired bullpen.

"He was in control of the game," Robinson said. "If he goes through the eighth inning, he's out of there, or if he gets into a little trouble, he's gone. We didn't keep them in check even after the home run."

Mike Stanton relieved and struck out Ryan Howard before being replaced by Jon Rauch. Aaron Rowand, who had three hits, reached on an error by third baseman Ryan Zimmerman. David Bell singled and pinch-hitter David Dellucci doubled off the left-field wall, scoring both runners.

After pinch-hitter Abraham Nunez grounded out, Jimmy Rollins followed with an RBI double down the right-field line for a 6-2 lead.

Geoff Geary (4-0) pitched a scoreless seventh for the win. Arthur Rhodes worked a perfect eighth and Tom Gordon got the final three outs for the Phillies, who have won five of seven.

Hernandez (5-6) allowed three runs and nine hits over seven-plus innings. He walked three and struck out four.

"I thought he put the ball where he wanted to," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "And that's the whole secret to his pitching. He's got a great sequence to his pitching and his command is outstanding and he knows how. He evidently understood his hitters good. He was doing a good job until Burrell touched him off there."

While Hernandez was wriggling out of trouble early, Washington was unable to solve right-hander Cory Lidle, who didn't allow a hit until Marlon Anderson's leadoff double in the fifth. Lidle went six innings, giving up two runs and three hits. He walked four and struck out two.

The Phillies went up 1-0 in the fifth, when Lidle drew a leadoff walk, moved to third on Rollins' single to right and scored on Chase Utley's sacrifice fly.

Anderson doubled down the left-field line leading off the Washington fifth, breaking up Lidle's no-hit bid and starting a game-tying rally. Brian Schneider's groundout advanced Anderson to third, and he scored on Marlon Byrd's sacrifice fly to short right-center.

Zimmerman delivered a tiebreaking single with two outs in the bottom half.


  • The Phillies placed C Mike Lieberthal on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hip and recalled RHP Brian Sanches from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
  • The Nationals activated OF Jose Guillen (right hamstring strain) from the DL and optioned OF Mike Vento to Triple-A New Orleans.
  • Rowand had his third three-hit game of the year, his first since April 14.
  • Abreu has hit safely in 10 consecutive games.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Phillies' starter Cory Lidle throws six innings and gives up two runs on three hits, but doesn't get the win.  (AP)
Phillies' starter Cory Lidle throws six innings and gives up two runs on three hits, but doesn't get the win. (AP)

Players of the Game

P. Burrell
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1

A. Rowand
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 0

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Washington Nationals
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Game Information
Attendance - 32089
Game Time - 2:53
Temperature - 78
Umpires - Home - Tim Timmons, First Base - Joe Brinkman, Second Base - Jeff Nelson, Third Base - Derryl Cousins