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Philly Bats Back to Life

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) – Ben Francisco’s two-run single in the eighth proved to be the game-winner as the Philadelphia bats finally awoke with a 10-8 win over Florida in the first of a three-game set.

Raul Ibanez went 4-for-5 with two RBI, Ryan Howard hit a two-run homer while Shane Victorino added a solo home run and scored twice for the Phils, who snapped a two-game skid.

It was the best offensive performance for the Phillies since May 17 against Pittsburgh when the team scored 12 runs. Over those 18 games since, the team has either been shutout or held to one run nine times and never scored more than six.

Kyle Kendrick was tagged for six runs — five earned — on six hits with a walk and four strikeouts over five innings of work. Jose Contreras (3-2) got the win.

Hanley Ramirez hit a two-run homer while Gaby Sanchez added a solo shot for the Marlins, who have dropped four straight. Mike Stanton, a second-round pick in 2007, made his MLB-debut and went 3-for-5 with two runs scored.

Chris Volstad went just four-plus innings in the start and was charged with six runs (five earned) on eight hits with three walks and two strikeouts. Clay Hensley (1-3) was handed the loss.

With the score tied in the eighth, the Marlins took the lead. Contreras was on the mound to start the inning and Stanton greeted him with a single. After Ronny Paulino flied out, Wes Helms delivered a pinch-hit triple to right that scored Stanton for an 8-7 advantage.

Hensley came on for the eighth and got the first out, but was pulled after a walk to Placido Polanco and hitting Chase Utley with a pitch.

Taylor Tankersley then took the mound and got Howard to hit into a sharp groundout to first that advanced the runners, but Francisco followed with a single to center that plated two. After Ibanez singled, Wilson Valdez hit a dribbler down the third base line that stayed fair for a 10-8 lead.

Brad Lidge gave up a leadoff single to Ramirez in the ninth and with two outs walked Cody Ross. Stanton then hit a single off the glove of Lidge to load the bases, but Paulino popped out to end the game and give Lidge his third save of the season.

Florida jumped on top in the first as Sanchez clubbed a 1-0 pitch just inside the left field foul pole for his fifth home run of the year and a 1-0 lead.

The Marlins added another run in the second as Stanton reached base in his first career at-bat with an infield single and Paulino followed with a double off the glove of Victorino for a 2-0 lead.

Ramirez drilled the first pitch he saw over the wall in left with two outs and a man on base in the third for a 4-0 advantage.

Philly, though, got back into the contest in the third with three runs. With two outs, Utley hit a single and Howard followed by ripping the first pitch over the left-center wall. Francisco then singled, stole second and came home on an Ibanez single to make it a 4-3 game.

Florida got two back in the fourth. With one out and Ross on base, Paulino singled and Volstad reached base on Kendrick’s throwing error. Chris Coghlan then singled to bring home two runners for a 6-3 lead.

With two outs in the fourth, Victorino hit the first pitch over the right field fence for his 10th home run of the season to make it a 6-4 game.

In the fifth, the Phils loaded the bases with no outs and Ibanez scored one with an infield single. Brian Sanches came in and limited the damage, as a Valdez groundout scored one, but he got Carlos Ruiz to line out and Ross Gload to fly out to keep it a 6-6 game after five innings.

In the sixth with Jorge Sosa on the mound, Victorino led off with a walk and moved to third on Polanco’s single. Utley then lofted a fly ball to center that scored Victorino for a 7-6 lead. Howard then hit a single, but Francisco grounded into a double play to end the inning.

The Marlins, though, got it back in the seventh. Coghlan led off with a triple and stayed there when Sanchez beat out an infield single. After Ramirez struck out, Jorge Cantu doubled to tie the game. Dan Uggla and Ross, though, both grounded out to leave two on base.

Game Notes

The Phils have won four of the seven games against Florida this season…Coming into the game, the Phillies had dropped 13 of their previous 19 contests…Howard’s home run was his 10th of the season while Ramirez hit his ninth…Utley finished the game 2-for-3 with an RBI and three runs scored…Roy Halladay, who threw the 20th perfect game in MLB history against Florida on May 29, takes the mound for Philly while Josh Johnson will toe the rubber for Florida on Wednesday.