PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Phillies salvaged their first of three straight west-coast series’ against the Rockies on Sunday, with a 10-9 win which took four hours and eight minutes, avoiding a sweep in Colorado. The Phillies are now 8-10 on the young season. Their starting pitching has been inconsistent, but the Phillies will get a much needed boost from their ace on Wednesday night, as Cole Hamels will make his season debut.
“He’s [Hamels] stretched out as a normal starter would out of Spring Training, so he’s pitched up to 90 pitches so he won’t have any restrictions,” Sandberg told Angelo Cataldi and the WIP Morning Show. “We’ll just watch him pitch and take a look at him and see how he does, but it’s great to have him in the rotation with the other guys we have. He’s going on Wednesday, so that’s a little strategy there, rather than pitching him on Tuesday breaking up him and [Cliff] Lee and having [A.J.] Burnett in the middle here for the Dodgers series. [I’m] anxious to watch him pitch and to see him and then go from there, but no restrictions. He threw all of his pitches in his last three outings. He’s been with us the last two days in Colorado, been around the guys and I know that he’s anxious to get out there and contribute and help us out on this road and help us out the rest of the year.”
Ryan Howard went 4-5 on Sunday with a triple, a home run, and 3 RBI’s, coming up a double short of the cycle. In the 7th inning, Howard hit a ball to right-field which was misplayed allowing Howard to reach second base. The play was controversially ruled a single and a error, rather than a double.
“I thought he came in looked for a shoe-string catch and the ball trickled by him,” Sandberg said. “For me, you go for a dive or a shoe-string catch on a ball and it gets by you, you’re not guaranteed to knock that down. So that’s how I had it. I didn’t have a chance to look at any replays or anything, but that’s the way that I had it in that part of the game, was him thinking he was going to make a quick catch down by the ground and then have a play at home plate.”
Sandberg said the Phillies will appeal the play in hopes of getting Howard the cycle.
“Yeah, somebody will call in and have them [MLB] look at that and see if that will be changed or not,” Sandberg said. “At the moment we did have the ball thrown out just in case and it wasn’t taken over to the guy and so that ball has been taken care of so we’re just waiting to get back on the ruling on that.”
The Phillies continue their current ten-game road trip in Los Angeles against the Dogers, before heading to Arizona to play the Diamondbacks.
“We have LA and Arizona left on this road trip, but to salvage the last game of that series is big.” Sandberg said. “You know what, it took a lot of grit and grind from all the guys. We used everybody except for [Carloz] Ruiz, [Jeff] Manship, and [Shawn] Camp to get that done in a nine inning game. Colorado is something else, it’s just never over.”