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Philadelphia at Washington

Philadelphia (2-0) «2001301018111
Washington (0-2)0021000104101

Phillies 8, Nationals 4

CBSSports.com wire reports

WASHINGTON -- Powered by Ryan Howard, the Philadelphia Phillies are 2-0 for the first time since 2003, thanks in large part to scoring 19 runs already.

Not that manager Charlie Manuel is going to say he's thrilled with his lineup's production so far.

"We want 19 a game," Manuel deadpanned, then acknowledged: "I probably wouldn't be satisfied with that."

Howard hit a two-run homer and an RBI double, Chase Utley and Placido Polanco also had two hits apiece, and the Phillies beat the Washington Nationals 8-4 on Wednesday night.

"I think our offense can be better. Yes, I do," Manuel said. "I think we're getting better as we go along, too, without a doubt."

That's saying something, considering the Phillies have nearly the same hitters they did last season, when they won their second successive NL championship and were the league's only club with at least 200 home runs and 100 steals.

Having that sort of offense lessens the burden on the pitchers, as Cole Hamels (1-0) pointed out after laboring through five innings. He needed 103 pitches to get 15 outs and never retired the side in order. The left-hander gave up five hits and three runs, two earned, including rookie Ian Desmond's solo home run to straightaway center in the third.

"We know we have a really good hitting team. We showed that the first game, and we showed that the second game," said Hamels, who got into the act with an RBI single off Jason Marquis (0-1). "It's a really good feeling knowing these guys are going to put up some runs, and you just have to go out there and just try to plug away, get the job done and not really stress as much. It makes the game a little bit more easy."

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After Washington tied it on Desmond's RBI double in the fourth, Marquis failed to get an out in the fifth. He allowed Polanco's double, Utley's RBI single, and Howard's drive to right-center.

Howard also homered in Monday's opener, an 11-1 victory for Philadelphia, and his nine home runs in Nationals Park, which opened in 2008, are the most by a visiting player. He has seven home runs and 18 RBI in his past 12 games at the stadium.

"We've tried some different things on him. It's a game of adjustments. He's making adjustments on our pitching," Nationals manager Jim Riggleman said. "He's just so dangerous."

Marquis had a different take.

The right-hander, who signed a $15 million, two-year contract with Washington as a free agent, made the case that Howard "does have holes in his swing."

"When I made pitches on him tonight, I got him out," Marquis said. "When I left the one ball out, you saw what he was able to do with it. That's what he thrives on -- a ball up out over the plate, pitchers making a mistake, and getting the barrel through the ball. ... But there's a reason why he also strikes out 200 times, 180 times. He has holes in his swing. So if you make your pitches, you know, he's going to be an out."

So far this season, Howard is 4 for 11 with two home runs and five RBI.

The Phillies as a whole are 24 for 74 -- and Howard, like his manager, thinks the numbers will improve.

"The thing about it is, everybody's not on the same zone right now. We still got guys [struggling] -- it's still early," Howard said. "Not everybody's going on full tilt right now."

Marquis' debut in Washington was hardly auspicious: a 15-minute top of the first inning that included three walks, a hit batter and a wild pitch -- not to mention two runs. Things didn't end well for Marquis on this night, either: He allowed hits to six of the last seven batters he faced.

Philadelphia led 7-3 after seven but its bullpen made things somewhat interesting. Danys Baez allowed Cristian Guzman's leadoff triple in the eighth, Adam Kennedy's sacrifice fly and Willie Harris' double. Baez was replaced by Antonio Bastardo, who got one out, and then Ryan Madson recorded the last four outs for the save. Madson let the Nationals have two baserunners in the ninth before getting Ivan Rodriguez to ground into a game-ending double play.

"It's fun being a pitcher on this team," Madson said. "Seeing these guys hit every day is fun to watch."


Nationals RF Mike Morse left the game with a strained left calf before the top of the eighth, so Guzman entered to play right, his first regular-season appearance in the field as anything but a shortstop in an 11-year major league career. Guzman lost his starting shortstop job to Desmond in spring training. ... After an announced sellout of 41,290 for Game 1, the Nationals drew 27,240 fans for Game 2.

Copyright 2015 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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Players of the Game

R. Howard
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1

I. Desmond
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1

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Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins, SS3110211 .429
Placido Polanco, 3B4320002 .556
Chase Utley, 2B4221100 .429
Ryan Howard, 1B5123012 .364
Jayson Werth, RF3000211 .125
Raul Ibanez, LF3001101 .143
Shane Victorino, CF4110114 .222
Carlos Ruiz, C4020110 .500
Cole Hamels, P2011000 .500
   a- Ross Gload, PH1000000 .000
    Chad Durbin, P0000000 .000
   b- Greg Dobbs, PH1000001 .000
    Danys Baez, P0000000 .000
    Antonio Bastardo, P0000000 .000
    Ryan Madson, P1000013 .000
a-fouled out for Hamels in the 6th
b-flied out for Durbin in the 8th
2B - Jimmy Rollins (1, Marquis), Placido Polanco (1, Marquis), Ryan Howard (1, Capps)
HR - Ryan Howard (2, Marquis)
SF - Raul Ibanez (1)
RBI - Chase Utley (1), Ryan Howard 3 (5), Raul Ibanez (1), Cole Hamels (1)
Team LOB - 10
DP - Utley-Rollins-Howard
E - Ryan Howard (1, Misplayed grounder)
Philadelphia Phillies
Cole Hamels (W,1-0) 5532451 3.60
Chad Durbin (H,1) 2100120 0.00
Danys Baez 0.1211000 13.50
Antonio Bastardo (H,1) 0.1000000 0.00
Ryan Madson (S,1) 1.1200020 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Cole Hamels 103-63, Chad Durbin 36-22, Danys Baez 6-4, Antonio Bastardo 1-1, Ryan Madson 13-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Cole Hamels 7-4, Chad Durbin 3-1, Ryan Madson 1-0
Batters Faced - Cole Hamels 25, Chad Durbin 8, Danys Baez 3, Antonio Bastardo 1, Ryan Madson 5
Washington Nationals
Nyjer Morgan, CF4100101 .250
    Matt Capps, P0000000 .000
Ian Desmond, SS5122032 .286
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B4110122 .250
Adam Dunn, 1B3010212 .167
Josh Willingham, LF4031101 .571
Ivan Rodriguez, C5010005 .444
Mike Morse, RF3000025 .250
    Cristian Guzman, RF1110000 .333
Adam Kennedy, 2B3001001 .143
Jason Marquis, P2000010 .000
    Tyler Walker, P0000000 .000
   a- Alberto Gonzalez, PH1000000 .000
    Jesse English, P0000000 .000
    Tyler Clippard, P0000000 .000
   b- Willie Harris, PH-CF1010000 .200
a-grounded out for T. Walker in the 6th
b-doubled for Clippard in the 8th
2B - Ian Desmond (1, Hamels), Willie Harris (1, Baez)
3B - Cristian Guzman (1, Baez)
HR - Ian Desmond (1, Hamels)
SF - Adam Kennedy (1)
RBI - Ian Desmond 2 (2), Josh Willingham (1), Adam Kennedy (1)
2-OUT RBI - Ian Desmond 2 (2), Josh Willingham (1)
SB - Nyjer Morgan (2, 2nd base off Hamels/Ruiz), Josh Willingham (1, 2nd base off Hamels/Ruiz)
Team LOB - 11
DP - Kennedy-Desmond-Dunn, Kennedy-Desmond-Dunn, Clippard-Desmond-Dunn
E - Ian Desmond (2, Misplayed grounder)
Washington Nationals
Jason Marquis (L,0-1) 4866321 13.50
Tyler Walker 2000030 0.00
Jesse English 0.1111100 5.40
Tyler Clippard 1.2100200 0.00
Matt Capps 1110210 0.00
IBB - Ruiz by Matt Capps
HBP - Polanco (by Jason Marquis)
WP - Jason Marquis (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Marquis 70-45, Tyler Walker 22-17, Jesse English 12-4, Tyler Clippard 25-14, Matt Capps 24-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Marquis 5-3, Tyler Walker 1-2, Tyler Clippard 1-3, Matt Capps 1-2
Batters Faced - Jason Marquis 22, Tyler Walker 6, Jesse English 3, Tyler Clippard 7, Matt Capps 7
Game Information
Attendance - 27240
Game Time - 3:19
Temperature - 86
Umpires - Home - Mike Winters, First Base - Hunter Wendelstedt, Second Base - Dan Bellino, Third Base - Jerry Layne