Phillies Comeback Falls Short

The Florida Marlins feasted on Phillies' starter Randy Wolf and reliever Geoff Geary didn't make out much better as the Marlins beat the Phillies 10-8 Thursday afternoon in the final game of their short two-game series at Citizens Bank Park.

Armando Benitez continues to be quite the offseason pickup for the Florida Marlins.

After his teammates nearly blew a seven-run lead, Benitez escaped a bases-loaded jam created by Billy Koch as the Marlins held off the Phillies, 10-8, to earn a split of their two-game series.

The Marlins held a 10-3 lead before starter Carl Pavano gave up a solo homer to Pat Burrell and a two-run homer to pinch hitter Chase Utley in the sixth. Utley remained in the contest to play second base and delivered a two-run double against Ben Howard one inning later to make it 10-8.

Koch entered at the beginning of the eighth and loaded the bases with one out. Marlins manager Jack McKeon yanked Koch after the reliever fell behind 3-1 in the count against Jason Michaels.

Benitez calmly struck out Michaels and induced Mike Lieberthal to pop out to preserve the lead. In the ninth, Utley rapped a leadoff single but Jimmy Rollins struck out, pinch hitter Tomas Perez flied out and Bobby Abreu lined out to end the contest.

An All-Star in his first season with the Marlins, Benitez threw 18 strikes and just two balls to pick up his 33rd save. Fellow All-Star Pavano (10-4) got the win despite allowing six runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings.

Jeff Conine, who had four RBI, and Alex Gonzalez hit three-run homers for the Marlins, who are 7-1 against the Phillies this season.

Phillies starter Randy Wolf (4-6) was rocked for six runs and eight hits in just four-plus innings as he slipped to 2-10 lifetime against the Marlins - his most losses against any team. Reliever Geoff Geary was tagged for four earned runs in two innings of work.

The Phillies open a weekend series against the Cubs in Philly on Friday night. Brett Myers (5-7, 5.74) faces Kerry Wood (4-3, 2.59) in the series opener.


FLORIDA (10) VS PHILADELPHIA (8) - FINAL FLORIDA ab r h rbi bb so lob avg J Pierre cf 5 1 3 0 0 0 1 .304 L Castillo 2b 4 2 2 0 0 0 1 .292 H Choi 1b 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .269 M Lowell 3b 4 2 3 1 1 0 1 .304 M Cabrera rf 3 1 1 0 0 1 3 .301 A Nunez rf 2 0 1 1 0 1 1 .183 D Easley 1b-2b 4 1 0 0 1 0 5 .258 J Conine lf 4 1 1 4 0 1 4 .259 A Gonzalez ss 5 1 1 3 0 0 0 .245 M Redmond c 5 1 3 1 0 0 0 .255 C Pavano p 3 0 0 0 0 3 1 .135 M Perisho p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 a-D Willis ph 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 .282 B Howard p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 N Bump p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 B Koch p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 A Benitez p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 Totals 41 10 15 10 2 7 18 a-struck out swinging for M Perisho in the 7th. BATTING: 2B - M Lowell (27, G Geary). HR - J Conine (7, 4th inning off R Wolf 2 on, 1 Out), M Redmond (2, 4th inning off R Wolf 0 on, 2 Out), A Gonzalez (14, 5th inning off G Geary 2 on, 2 Out). SF - J Conine. RBI - J Conine 4 (38), M Redmond (22), M Lowell (59), A Gonzalez 3 (46), A Nunez (5). 2-out RBI - M Redmond, A Gonzalez 3. Runners left in scoring position, 2 out - J Conine 2, M Cabrera 1. Team LOB - 7. BASERUNNING: SB - J Pierre 2 (24, 2nd base off R Wolf/M Lieberthal, 3rd base off R Wolf/M Lieberthal). FIELDING: E - H Choi (7, ground ball). DP: 1 (M Redmond-L Castillo). PHILADELPHIA ab r h rbi bb so lob avg J Rollins ss 5 2 3 0 0 1 1 .276 P Polanco 2b 3 1 1 0 0 1 2 .263 R Hernandez p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 b-R Ledee ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 .290 R Cormier p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 c-T Perez ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .259 B Abreu rf 4 0 1 1 2 0 2 .303 J Thome 1b 3 0 1 1 1 1 4 .294 D Bell 3b 2 1 0 1 2 0 1 .278 P Burrell lf 4 1 1 1 1 1 4 .263 J Michaels cf 4 2 1 0 1 1 3 .245 M Lieberthal c 5 0 1 0 0 0 6 .249 R Wolf p 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 .267 G Geary p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 a-C Utley ph-2b 3 1 3 4 0 0 0 .275 Totals 37 8 12 8 7 5 27 a-homered to right center for G Geary in the 6th; b-flied out to left for R Hernandez in the 7th; c-flied out to right for R Cormier in the 9th. BATTING: 2B - J Rollins (23, C Pavano); C Utley (8, B Howard). HR - P Burrell (16, 6th inning off C Pavano 0 on, 0 Out), C Utley (8, 6th inning off C Pavano 1 on, 1 Out). S - D Bell. SF - J Thome. RBI - B Abreu (67), D Bell (47), J Thome (70), P Burrell (63), C Utley 4 (34). 2-out RBI - B Abreu, D Bell, C Utley 2. Runners left in scoring position, 2 out - J Thome 2, B Abreu 1, M Lieberthal 2, R Ledee 1, P Burrell 2. Team LOB - 13. ---------------------------------------------------- FLORIDA - 000 451 000 -- 10 PHILADELPHIA - 002 013 200 -- 8 ---------------------------------------------------- FLORIDA ip h r er bb so hr era C Pavano (W, 10-4) 5 2/3 9 6 6 2 2 2 3.11 M Perisho 1/3 0 0 0 1 0 0 3.86 B Howard 2/3 1 2 2 2 1 0 5.84 N Bump (H, 4) 1/3 0 0 0 0 0 0 5.31 B Koch (H, 3) 1/3 1 0 0 2 0 0 4.50 A Benitez (S, 33) 1 2/3 1 0 0 0 2 0 1.25 PHILADELPHIA ip h r er bb so hr era R Wolf (L, 4-6) 4 8 6 6 0 2 2 3.87 G Geary 2 5 4 4 2 2 1 6.67 R Hernandez 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 4.66 R Cormier 2 1 0 0 0 2 0 3.81 R Wolf pitched to 2 batters in the 5th. WP - G Geary. IBB - J Thome (by C Pavano), D Easley (by G Geary). BALK - C Pavano. HBP - P Polanco (by C Pavano); J Rollins (by N Bump). Pitches-strikes: C Pavano 87-59; M Perisho 11-5; B Howard 20-10; N Bump 8-5; B Koch 20-5; A Benitez 19-18; R Wolf 83-58; G Geary 40-20; R Hernandez 12-9; R Cormier 17-13. Ground balls-fly balls: C Pavano 2-12; M Perisho 0-1; B Howard 0-1; N Bump 0-1; B Koch 1-0; A Benitez 0-3; R Wolf 3-7; G Geary 1-3; R Hernandez 1-1; R Cormier 4-0. Batters faced: C Pavano 29; M Perisho 2; B Howard 5; N Bump 2; B Koch 5; A Benitez 5; R Wolf 20; G Geary 13; R Hernandez 4; R Cormier 7. UMPIRES: HP--Paul Nauert. 1B--Randy Marsh. 2B--Larry Vanover. 3B--Sam Holbrook. T--3:26. Att--44,316. Weather: 85 degrees, sunny. Wind: 9 mph, out to center.


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