Rowand's walk-off single sinks Pads
In 82nd game of season, Phils look to build on thrilling win
PHILADELPHIA -- In the 82nd game of the season, the start of their second half, Aaron Rowand's RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning gave the Phillies a 6-5 win over the Padres.It improved their record to 38-44. Ryan Howard led off the ninth with a single to right field and advanced to second on Pat Burrell's groundout. Rowand then drove sidearmer Cla Meredith's 3-2 pitch down the right-field line, and Howard jogged home with the winning run.
"Right now, we have a whole new outlook on everything," Howard said. "Everything in the first half is behind us."Prior to coming up with the game-winning hit, Rowand was hitless in his last nine trips and 6 for his last 39.
"It was a big hit," manager Charlie Manuel said. "He's been really scuffling. He's been overtrying. That was a real good at-bat, especially against a sidearm guy.""I was trying to go out and get good wood on the ball," Rowand said. "On the one I hit, he made a mistake and left it up." Meredith knew he didn't get the last one where he wanted it. "I tried to throw him a sinker away -- and I don't know how much it sank," the Padres reliever said. The winning run was the only one the Phillies managed outside of their five-run outburst in the fourth. Trailing, 2-0, in the fourth, Chase Utley, Bobby Abreu, Howard and Burrell opened the inning with four consecutive hits to tie the game. The Phils scored the go-ahead run when Rowand reached on a fielding error by shortsop Khalil Greene. Carlos Ruiz provided what would be much-needed insurance two batters later with his first Major League home run, a two-run shot, for a 5-2 lead. It came on the day of his callup for his second big-league stint. Ruiz was hitting just .143 in his first go-around with the Phillies, but said after the game that he was much more comfortable this time. And now he has a baseball in his locker to show for it.
|"Right now, we have a whole new outlook on everything. Everything in the first half is behind us."|
|-- Ryan Howard|
Zachary Levine is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.