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Phillies get to Sabathia, 5-2

He has his worst start since joining Milwaukee, as Victorino's slam helps Philadelphia take a 2-0 lead.

October 03, 2008|From the Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA -- With one more loss to the Phillies, CC Sabathia and the Milwaukee Brewers will have all winter to rest.

Brett Myers rankled Sabathia with a pesky at-bat and dominated the rest of the Brewers from the mound, and Philadelphia beat Milwaukee, 5-2, on Thursday night behind Shane Victorino's grand slam for a 2-0 lead in their best-of-five NL division series.

"I don't think starting on three days' rest had anything to do with it," Sabathia said. "I just didn't make pitches when I needed to."

Myers gave up two runs and two hits in seven innings, pulling the Phillies within one win of the NL Championship Series. Ryan Madson and J.C. Romero worked the eighth, and Brad Lidge had a suspense-free ninth for a change.

Pitching on three days' rest for the fourth consecutive start, Sabathia had his worst outing since joining the Brewers in a trade with Cleveland on July 7.

The left-hander gave up five runs and six hits -- all for extra bases -- in 3 2/3 innings. He walked four, his second-highest total of the season.

"When you've got a guy like CC on the ropes you've got to take advantage," Victorino said.

Now, Sabathia might have to wait six months for his next start. And, that might be in a different uniform. The 28-year-old will be one of the most sought-after free agents at the end of the season.

Sabathia was 11-2 with a 1.65 ERA in 17 starts for Milwaukee, almost single-handedly leading the wild-card Brewers to their first postseason berth since 1982.

Sabathia has lost his last three postseason starts, including two against Boston in last year's ALCS with Cleveland. Overall, Sabathia is 2-3 with a 7.92 ERA in the playoffs.

Sabathia had all his pitches working in the first. Victorino doubled with one out and stole third, but Sabathia struck out Chase Utley and Ryan Howard to end the threat. Utley couldn't touch Sabathia's off-speed stuff and Howard had no chance against a 96-mph fastball.

Sabathia was erratic in the second and the Phillies took advantage. Jayson Werth lined a one-out double and Pedro Feliz followed with an RBI double to tie the score, 1-1.

After Carlos Ruiz grounded out, Myers kept the inning going by working a walk. Digging in, choking up and crouching, Myers drew cheers for fouling off a 1-and-2 pitch after wildly missing the first two pitches.

He fouled off two more during the at-bat and earned a standing ovation from the crowd.

"I know I'm a terrible hitter," Myers said. "It was one of those freakish things where I was able to lay off his good pitches."

The Brewers missed an opportunity to break it open in the first after Myers walked J.J. Hardy to force in a run with one out. But Myers escaped further trouble by getting Corey Hart to hit into a home-to-first double play on a bouncer to the mound.

"That was the turning point," Brewers Manager Dale Sveum said.

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