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Hamels fans 11, Phillies edge Nationals on Dobbs' pinch-hit RBI

CBSSports.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- A sore back sent Philadelphia's pinch-hit specialist Greg Dobbs to the batting cage early in the game Tuesday. He wanted to make sure he kept the blood flowing and didn't tighten up.

When he was finally called on in the ninth inning of the scoreless game, he didn't feel any soreness at all.

"I pretty much didn't feel anything -- except the adrenaline and my heart pumping," Dobbs said.

Dobbs blooped a single to center field, scoring pinch-runner Eric Bruntlett and giving the Philadelphia Phillies a 1-0 victory against the Washington Nationals.

It was Dobbs' league-leading 10th pinch hit and ninth RBI in 22 at-bats this season.

Dobbs said he knew the ball was going to drop for a hit as soon as it left his bat. He was just waiting for Bruntlett to start heading home, but Bruntlett stayed on third base until the ball hit the ground to be sure he could head home.

"I was watching Bruntlett out of the corner of my eye," Dobbs said. "He can run, so there's no reason to cheat off the bag. I was like, 'You're going to score, right? Yeah, you're going to score.' It was a relief."

Dobbs nearly gave the Phillies an insurance run as well. He attempted to score from first on Shane Victorino's double, but was thrown out at the plate to end the ninth inning.

Dobbs' hit kept Philadelphia from being shut out in consecutive games for the first time since Sept. 11-12, 1999, and kept the Phillies from their first four-game losing streak since Aug. 22-25, 2007.

Tom Gordon (4-2) earned the win with a scoreless eighth. Brad Lidge pitched the ninth for his 11th save in 11 chances.

Jon Rauch (2-1) gave up Dobbs' hit, ending his 12-inning scoreless streak.

The ninth-inning heroics came after Philadelphia's Cole Hamels and Washington's Jason Bergmann each pitched seven scoreless innings.

Hamels gave up four hits, walked two and struck out 11 -- tying a season high. It was the eighth time in nine starts Hamels had lasted at least seven innings. Hamels has not allowed a run in 19 innings.

"He might get Hershiser's record," Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel said, referring to Orel Hershiser's 1988 record of 59 scoreless innings.

Hamels laughed at the suggestion he could make a run at the 20-year-old record and pointed out his propensity to give up the occasional home run, a consequence of throwing balls over the plate.

"With the tremendous fielding that we have, I'm out there throwing strikes wanting them to hit the ball," Hamels said. "That way I can get in and out of an inning pretty quick."

As good as Hamels was, Bergmann matched him inning for inning. Bergmann allowed five hits and struck out five before being removed for a pinch-hitter. Only once did the Phillies advance to third base against him -- Philadelphia loaded the bases with two outs in the seventh before Bergmann got Victorino to line out to center field, ending the threat.

It was Bergmann's second successive seven-inning outing since returning to the Nationals after a stint in the minors.

Bergmann had been sent to Triple-A Columbus after posting a 10.45 ERA and 0-1 record in two April starts. Since being recalled on May 14, Bergmann earned his first win of the season in a 1-0 game at New York on May 15 and had another strong outing Tuesday.

"We're in a good position to win these games -- that's the best feeling right there," Bergmann said. "We've been in some games this year that we had no chance -- and most of it has been my fault, so it's good to turn that around a little bit."

The Nationals had some chances in the late innings. Washington left two runners on base in each of the final three innings, including runners on first and third in the ninth.

"We had men on third with less than two out," Washington manager Manny Acta said. "And we couldn't score them, and they did."

The Phillies scored thanks to yet another big pinch hit from Dobbs. Although his .455 pinch-hit average makes it seem easy, he doesn't think he has a secret to pinch-hitting success.

"It's not easy, it's not," Dobbs said. "I don't care how many hits I have, or how many RBI. Every at-bat is a battle."

Notes

  • Lidge has allowed just one earned run in 20 innings for an ERA of 0.45.
  • Washington OF Austin Kearns sat out his third consecutive game with an elbow injury. He's in a 2-for-33 slump.
  • Washington's batters struck out 13 times, a season high.
  • Philadelphia 2B Chase Utley had a double. He has reached base in 43 of 47 games.
 
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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Cole Hamels strikes out 11 in seven scoreless innings, but gets no support and no victory.  (AP)
Cole Hamels strikes out 11 in seven scoreless innings, but gets no support and no victory. (AP)

Players of the Game
Washington

J. Bergmann
IP 7.0
H 5
ER 0
BB 3
K 5
Philadelphia

C. Hamels
IP 7.0
H 4
ER 0
BB 2
K 11
 
Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins, SS4000101 .314
Shane Victorino, CF4010104 .244
Chase Utley, 2B4010011 .309
Ryan Howard, 1B3000131 .183
Pat Burrell, LF3000112 .278
    Jayson Werth, PR-LF0000000 .270
Geoff Jenkins, RF4020001 .282
Pedro Feliz, 3B4020002 .234
    Eric Bruntlett, PR-3B0100000 .241
Carlos Ruiz, C3010012 .238
Cole Hamels, P2000001 .296
    Tom Gordon, P0000000 .000
   a- Greg Dobbs, PH1011000 .356
    Brad Lidge, P0000000 .000
Totals3218146  
a-singled for Gordon in the 9th
Batting
2B - Shane Victorino (6, Rauch), Chase Utley (14, Bergmann), Pedro Feliz (9, Rauch)
SH - Carlos Ruiz (1), Cole Hamels (2)
RBI - Greg Dobbs (13)
SB - Shane Victorino (7, 2nd base off Bergmann/Flores)
Team LOB - 10
Philadelphia Phillies
Cole Hamels 74002110 2.61
Tom Gordon (W,4-2) 1100100 4.26
Brad Lidge (S,11) 1000220 0.45
Pitches-Strikes - Cole Hamels 110-73, Tom Gordon 20-12, Brad Lidge 22-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Cole Hamels 4-6, Tom Gordon 3-0, Brad Lidge 1-0
Batters Faced - Cole Hamels 27, Tom Gordon 5, Brad Lidge 5
Washington Nationals
Felipe Lopez, 2B4000122 .255
Cristian Guzman, SS4020001 .311
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B4010012 .251
Dmitri Young, 1B3010101 .235
Lastings Milledge, CF4000013 .235
Jesus Flores, C4000032 .316
Wily Mo Pena, LF4010012 .216
Elijah Dukes, RF2000220 .038
Jason Bergmann, P2000020 .000
   a- Aaron Boone, PH1000012 .323
    Saul Rivera, P0000000 .000
    Jon Rauch, P0000000 .000
   b- Rob Mackowiak, PH0000100 .179
    Willie Harris, PR0000000 .176
Totals32050513  
a-struck out for Bergmann in the 7th
b-walked for Rauch in the 9th
Batting
2B - Wily Mo Pena (3, Hamels)
SB - Cristian Guzman (3, 2nd base off Hamels/Ruiz), Elijah Dukes 2 (2, 2nd base off Lidge/Ruiz, 3rd base off Lidge/Ruiz)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Lastings Milledge 1
Washington Nationals
Jason Bergmann 7500350 5.47
Saul Rivera 1000110 4.13
Jon Rauch (L,2-1) 1311000 2.78
IBB - Rollins by Jason Bergmann
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Bergmann 95-59, Saul Rivera 20-12, Jon Rauch 18-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Bergmann 4-12, Jon Rauch 1-1
Batters Faced - Jason Bergmann 29, Saul Rivera 4, Jon Rauch 5
Game Information
Attendance - 28105
Game Time - 2:32
Temperature - 61
Umpires - Home - Phil Cuzzi, First Base - Jim Wolf, Second Base - Ed Montague, Third Base - Jerry Layne