Phillies Look Lost In Losing To Rockies 5-1

The Phillies played a far from perfect game Wednesday night and the Rockies took advantage of their miscues to beat the Phillies for the first time this season. Brandon Duckworth pitched a decent game, but literally threw his game away on a throw to first base. Three of the Rockies five runs were unearned.

It looked like the Phillies were going to have a big night off Rockies pitcher Chin-Hui Tsao (1-1). Marlon Byrd led off the game by taking a pitch out to left field to put the Phillies out to a quick 1-0 lead. Unfortunately, that would be the only run that the Phillies would manage against Tsao or any of three Colorado relievers. Actually, the Phillies managed just four more hits through the night, including two in the ninth inning in a failed rally.

Brandon Duckworth (4-6) didn't do much to hold the Phillies early lead. Ronnie Belliard led off the Rockies part of the first inning with a double and went to third on a sacrifice. After a walk to Todd Helton, Duckworth uncorked a wild pitch, bringing home Belliard.

Duckworth also hurt himself defensively in the fifth inning. After Charles Johnson led off with a walk, Tsao tried to sacrifice him to second and Duckworth fielded the bunt, only to throw it away. Duckworth came back to get Belliard and Juan Uribe, only to give up a three-run homerun to Helton on a 3-and-1 pitch. The homerun was Helton's 24th of the season and gave the Rockies a 4-1 lead. Johnson did more damage in the sixth when he doubled home rookie Garrett Atkins.

The Phillies mounted a mini-rally in the ninth. Mike Lieberthal led off with a double and after Tyler Houston struck out, Pat Burrell singled to left to put runners on first and third with one out against the Rockies' Justin Speier. After Burrell's single, Speier battled back from a 3-and-0 count to get Jimmy Rollins to pop out for the second out of the inning. Tomas Perez came up to pinch-hit and quickly struck out to end the uprising with the Rockies winning the game 5-1.

Burrell finished the night 1-for-3, putting his season average at .197, but he struggled defensively in left field. Burrell, who joined Tomas Perez and Todd Pratt in the dyed-blonde hair craze, misplayed two balls, one of which led to a Colorado run. Neither of the plays went down as errors.

Dan Plesac and Mike Williams combined to give the Phillies two innings of shutout ball. Colorado's bullpen threw three innings of shutout baseball.

The Phillies two-game lead in the wild card race shrank to a one-game lead. The Florida Marlins picked up another win behind Dontrelle Willis, moving them closer to the Phillies in the race.

The win was the first for the Rockies in five meetings this season with the Phillies. The series wraps up Thursday afternoon with Kevin Millwood (11-7, 3.76) going against Denny Stark (1-0, 6.03).

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