Flushing, NY (Sports Network) - Philadelphia turned to one of its mainstays to
keep its tenuous playoff hopes alive.
Ryan Howard answered the call in a big way.
Howard's two-out, two-run home run in the top of the ninth turned a crippling
defeat into a necessary victory, as the Phillies downed the New York Mets,
3-2, in the second contest of a three-game set at Citi Field.
Chase Utley worked a two-out walk against Josh Edgin (1-2) then Howard crushed
a belt-high fastball high into the night. It finally landed just above the
facade of the upper deck in right to give the Phillies the lead. The home run
made a winner of Jeremy Horst (2-0) and Jonathan Papelbon navigated the ninth
for his 36th save.
Before Howard's heroics, the game belonged to Mets starter Matt Harvey, who
surrendered only Jimmy Rollins' leadoff home run and three walks along with
seven strikeouts in seven innings. The rally also moved the Phillies past the
Pittsburgh Pirates and into fifth place in the National League wild-card
standings, 3 1/2 games behind St. Louis for the second wild-card berth. The
Cardinals are currently hosting Houston.
Cole Hamels kept the Phillies in the game with six solid frames, surrendering
two runs on six hits with 10 strikeouts and one walk. He reached the 200-
strikeout milestone in the fifth, but failed to reach 15 wins in the process,
a mark he achieved in 2007.
David Wright hit a solo home run in the sixth, while Ruben Tejada finished
with three hits. Scott Hairston and Ike Davis finished with two hits apiece
for the Mets, who lost their fourth straight game.
The Sports Network