Philadelphia at Washington

Scoreboard
Philadelphia (4-10) «1100110004100
Washington (5-11)000000002250

Phillies squeeze out win against Nationals

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said he didn't see the sign. He is aware of the sentiment.

During the third inning of what would be a 4-2 victory Thursday for Philadelphia over the Washington Nationals, four Phillies fans tried to tell general manager Pat Gillick how they feel about Manuel, unfurling a banner in the upper deck that read: "Hey Pat, Phire Charlie! Save Our Team!"

"That's all right. I've seen a few before. I'm sure I'll see a few more," Manuel said with a laugh. "In the last three years, I think I've lost quite a bit of hair. Philly has definitely taken that away from me."

He was able to joke around after a trying couple of days in which he engaged a radio talk-show host in a heated exchange, decided to shift staff ace Brett Myers to the bullpen, and had to sit Ryan Howard on Thursday because of a left leg injury that probably will sideline the NL MVP on Friday, too.

All that, plus Philadelphia entered this game a league-worst 3-10, meaning that although it's the third week of April, "Every game at this point is a must-win game for us," as Aaron Rowand put it.

Rowand hit his first homer of 2007, Jamie Moyer (2-1) took a two-hit shutout into the ninth, and Tom Gordon got out of a bases-loaded jam to earn his third save, then pumped both arms to celebrate.

"Just happy that we won a ballgame," Gordon said.

Tossing in the 60s and 70s mph -- and, only occasionally, in the low 80s -- Moyer allowed a single in the second, another in the third, and nothing more until Ryan Zimmerman's double leading off the ninth.

"I think it was a fastball," Zimmerman said. "I don't know how fast it was."

Dmitri Young followed with an RBI double, and that was it for the 44-year-old Moyer, who threw 111 pitches and was charged with two runs and four hits over eight innings.

"He does it to everybody. That's why he's been around for so long," Washington manager Manny Acta said. "He's done it against experienced teams and young teams. He's a master of changing speed."

Gordon made things more interesting, hitting his first batter, then allowing a single to fill the bases with no outs. Pinch-hitter Robert Fick's sacrifice fly made it 4-2, but Gordon got Brian Schneider to ground out before catching Chris Snelling looking at an 0-2 curveball.

"Any time we get a win it feels good," Manuel said, "but today it felt great."

Gillick offered a tepid defense of his manager before the game, saying: "We've got basically the same guys we had at the end of the season ... so I don't see that much decline. ... He can't go up there and hit for them."

Ah, yes, the problems with runners in scoring position.

Those continued, as Philadelphia went 3-for-16 in such situations Thursday and 4-for-27 in the two-game series. The Phillies had a runner thrown out at the plate ending the fourth inning, and stranded runners on third base in the fifth and sixth.

Washington was 3-for-23 with runners in scoring position against Philadelphia.

Unlike the Phillies, the Nationals weren't expected to contend, so Acta never felt any pressure during his club's 1-8 start. The team won four of its next six heading into Thursday, and even after a loss, Acta was upbeat.

"I love the way we're playing right now," he said. "The guys, they're giving all the effort they're supposed to."

Still, the pitcher who was the one sure member of the rotation heading to spring training, John Patterson, fell to 0-3 with a 7.00 ERA. He gave up a bloop double to Jimmy Rollins to open the game, then Shane Victorino's RBI single. Rowand's homer began the second, and Patterson left after allowing three runs over four-plus innings.

He said his right arm feels tight, sapping speed -- as much as 10 mph off his fastball.

"It's not even close," Patterson said. "I'm having to swallow a lot of pride right now."

Acta's take?

"Velocity's nice, but don't talk to me about velocity," Acta said. " Jamie Moyer was throwing today below the hitting speed and got us out for eight innings."

Notes

  • Washington is the first NL team to go through the first 16 games of a season without scoring in the first inning since the 1979 St. Louis Cardinals did it for the opening 17 games, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
  • Phillies RHP Jon Lieber is to make his first start of the season Friday at Cincinnati.
 
Copyright 2014 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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The Phillies' Tom Gordon escapes a bases-loaded ninth to earn his third save of the season.  (Getty Images)
The Phillies' Tom Gordon escapes a bases-loaded ninth to earn his third save of the season. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Philadelphia

S. Victorino
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
Washington

D. Young
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins, SS5121012 .302
Shane Victorino, RF5131001 .300
Chase Utley, 2B4010103 .224
Pat Burrell, LF1000301 .333
    Michael Bourn, PR-LF1000001 .111
Greg Dobbs, 1B4000106 .176
Wes Helms, 3B3001005 .250
Aaron Rowand, CF4111003 .340
Carlos Ruiz, C4120010 .289
Jamie Moyer, P4010001 .125
    Tom Gordon, P0000000 .000
Totals35410452  
Batting
2B - Jimmy Rollins (4, Patterson), Shane Victorino (5, Patterson), Chase Utley (7, Patterson), Carlos Ruiz 2 (4, Patterson, Speigner)
HR - Aaron Rowand (1, Patterson)
SF - Wes Helms (2)
RBI - Jimmy Rollins (12), Shane Victorino (5), Wes Helms (6), Aaron Rowand (6)
SB - Shane Victorino (4, 2nd base off Patterson/Flores)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Rollins-Utley-Dobbs
Philadelphia Phillies
Jamie Moyer (W,2-1) 8422450 3.05
Tom Gordon (S,3) 1100010 3.60
HBP - Kearns (by Tom Gordon)
Pitches-Strikes - Jamie Moyer 110-65, Tom Gordon 23-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jamie Moyer 9-9, Tom Gordon 1-1
Batters Faced - Jamie Moyer 31, Tom Gordon 5
Washington Nationals
Felipe Lopez, SS4010001 .294
Ronnie Belliard, 2B4000022 .281
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B3110100 .209
Dmitri Young, 1B3121101 .315
Austin Kearns, RF2000102 .250
Ryan Church, CF4010002 .281
Michael Restovich, LF3000003 .400
    Saul Rivera, P0000000 .000
   a- Robert Fick, PH0001000 .077
Jesus Flores, C2000120 .000
   b- Brian Schneider, PH1000000 .200
John Patterson, P1000010 .000
    Levale Speigner, P0000000 .000
    Chris Snelling, LF2000012 .242
Totals2925246  
a-hit a sacrifice fly for Rivera in the 9th
b-grounded out for Flores in the 9th
Batting
2B - Ryan Zimmerman (3, Moyer), Dmitri Young (7, Moyer)
SF - Robert Fick (1)
SH - Levale Speigner (1)
RBI - Dmitri Young (9), Robert Fick (2)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Young-Flores
Washington Nationals
John Patterson (L,0-3) 4733411 7.00
Levale Speigner 3211100 4.00
Saul Rivera 2100010 0.00
WP - John Patterson (3)
Pitches-Strikes - John Patterson 86-47, Levale Speigner 48-29, Saul Rivera 25-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Patterson 5-5, Levale Speigner 6-3, Saul Rivera 4-1
Batters Faced - John Patterson 22, Levale Speigner 12, Saul Rivera 7
Game Information
Attendance - 18671
Game Time - 2:57
Temperature - 54
Umpires - Home - Hunter Wendelstedt, First Base - Randy Marsh, Second Base - Bob Davidson, Third Base - Sam Holbrook