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Blanton whiffs 11 as Phils move past Marlins

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PHILADELPHIA -- Joe Blanton avoided the bad inning that's been haunting him, and Brad Lidge prevented a complete meltdown by the bullpen.

Blanton had a career-high 11 strikeouts in seven scoreless innings, Lidge got the final out with the tying run in scoring position, and the Philadelphia Phillies held on to beat the Florida Marlins 5-3 Tuesday night.

Blanton (3-3) allowed five hits in his best outing since last August. He lowered his ERA from 7.11 to 6.14.

 Marlins SS Ramirez leaves with groin injury

"He was aggressive," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "He made good pitches when he had to. He went right after hitters. He wasn't trying to trick them."

Lidge pitched out of jam in the ninth to earn his ninth save in 13 chances. Lidge, who was 48-for-48 last year, including the postseason, blew consecutive save opportunities against the New York Yankees last weekend.

"That was big," Manuel said. "He needs some outings where he gets people out."

Shane Victorino had four hits and Pedro Feliz had two hits and two RBI for the NL East-leading Phillies, who have won nine of 12.

Marlins starter Andrew Miller (1-2) gave up four runs -- two earned -- and seven hits in six innings.

"I kind of put us in a hole," Miller said.

Chad Durbin retired one batter in the ninth and left after loading the bases. Scott Eyre came in and got Ross Gload to hit a grounder to first baseman Ryan Howard, who made a wild throw to second that allowed two runs to score. It was Howard's first error this year.

Lidge entered with runners at second and third. He walked Emilio Bonifacio to load the bases again. After Jeremy Hermida's RBI groundout to first made it 5-3, Lidge struck out Wes Helms to end it.

"We were trying to get their closer up and we got him in the game, so good for us," Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said.

Pitching in short sleeves on a cold, damp night, Blanton looked nothing like the pitcher who struggled the first two months. Only one runner reached third base against him. He retired 11 of his last 12 batters, fanning five of the final six.

Blanton hadn't pitched this well since last Aug. 8, when he allowed no runs and one hit in seven innings of a 2-0 loss to Pittsburgh.

"I knew I was close," Blanton said. "I got myself into some good pitching counts."

The Phillies quickly jumped ahead in the first, taking a 3-0 lead. Jimmy Rollins started the inning by reaching safely on shortstop Hanley Ramirez's throwing error. Victorino doubled and Chase Utley walked to load the bases.

Miller then walked Howard to force in a run. Raul Ibanez followed with a sacrifice fly. After Jayson Werth struck out, Feliz drove in another run with an infield single to make it 3-0.

Victorino's two-out RBI double in the sixth gave the Phillies a 4-0 lead. Feliz had an RBI double after Werth doubled with two outs in the seventh off reliever Christopher Leroux, who made his major league debut.

Blanton pitched out of a two-out jam in the second, retiring Miller on a grounder to shortstop to leave the bases loaded.

"Blanton was terrific," Gonzalez said.

Notes

The Mets-Phillies game that was rained out on May 3 will be played as part of a day-night doubleheader on Sept. 13. The regularly scheduled game will start at 1:05 p.m. and the nightcap is scheduled for 8:05 p.m. ... Ramirez left with tightness in his groin in the third, shortly after he beat out a grounder to shortstop for an infield single. Gonzalez said the All-Star shortstop will be evaluated on Wednesday. ... Blanton's previous high was 10 strikeouts while pitching for Oakland against the Angels on Aug. 31, 2005. ... Blanton allowed four or more runs in five of his first eight starts.

 
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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Joe Blanton notches a career-high 11 strikeouts as he riddles the Marlins through seven innings.  (AP)
Joe Blanton notches a career-high 11 strikeouts as he riddles the Marlins through seven innings. (AP)

Players of the Game
Philadelphia

S. Victorino
AB 5
R 1
H 4
HR 0
RBI 1
Philadelphia

J. Blanton
IP 7.0
H 5
ER 0
BB 2
K 11
 
Florida Marlins
Emilio Bonifacio, 3B-SS4000120 .253
Jeremy Hermida, RF5001020 .267
Hanley Ramirez, SS2010000 .320
    Wes Helms, 3B3000012 .233
Jorge Cantu, 1B4010011 .277
John Baker, C4000021 .275
Dan Uggla, 2B3110121 .203
Cody Ross, CF4130011 .252
Chris Coghlan, LF1100300 .208
Andrew Miller, P2000015 .000
   a- Brett Hayes, PH1000010 .333
    Chris Leroux, P0000000 .000
   b- Ross Gload, PH1001000 .274
Totals34362513  
a-struck out for Miller in the 7th
b-hit into fielder's choice for Leroux in the 9th
Batting
2B - Cody Ross (12, Blanton)
RBI - Jeremy Hermida (18), Ross Gload (8)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Hanley Ramirez (3, Throwing)
Florida Marlins
Andrew Miller (L,1-2) 6742440 4.55
Chris Leroux 2311000 4.50
WP - Andrew Miller 2 (4)
Pitches-Strikes - Andrew Miller 109-68, Chris Leroux 25-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Andrew Miller 6-9, Chris Leroux 3-3
Batters Faced - Andrew Miller 30, Chris Leroux 9
Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins, SS5200001 .228
Shane Victorino, CF5141011 .284
Chase Utley, 2B4110103 .290
Ryan Howard, 1B3001111 .257
Raul Ibanez, LF2011100 .347
Jayson Werth, RF4110014 .255
Pedro Feliz, 3B4022003 .308
Carlos Ruiz, C4010003 .282
Joe Blanton, P2000111 .077
    Ryan Madson, P0000000 .000
   a- Greg Dobbs, PH1000000 .135
    Chad Durbin, P0000000 .333
    Scott Eyre, P0000000 .000
    Brad Lidge, P0000000 .000
Totals34510544  
a-flied out for Madson in the 8th
Batting
2B - Shane Victorino 2 (11, Miller, Miller), Jayson Werth (9, Leroux), Pedro Feliz (12, Leroux), Carlos Ruiz (7, Miller)
SF - Raul Ibanez (4)
RBI - Shane Victorino (25), Ryan Howard (34), Raul Ibanez (44), Pedro Feliz 2 (25)
2-OUT RBI - Shane Victorino (11), Pedro Feliz 2 (12)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
E - Ryan Howard (1, Throwing)
Philadelphia Phillies
Joe Blanton (W,3-3) 75002110 6.14
Ryan Madson 1000010 2.82
Chad Durbin 0.1131200 4.62
Scott Eyre0000000 3.48
Brad Lidge (S,9) 0.2000110 8.85
IBB - Coghlan by Joe Blanton
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Blanton 114-72, Ryan Madson 9-7, Chad Durbin 19-10, Scott Eyre 6-3, Brad Lidge 16-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Blanton 3-7, Ryan Madson 2-0, Chad Durbin 1-0, Scott Eyre 1-0, Brad Lidge 1-0
Batters Faced - Joe Blanton 28, Ryan Madson 3, Chad Durbin 4, Scott Eyre 1, Brad Lidge 3
Game Information
Attendance - 42249
Game Time - 2:55
Temperature - 52
Umpires - Home - John Hirschbeck, First Base - Wally Bell, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Marvin Hudson