Lee Struggles In Return, Phillies Fall To Giants
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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Cliff Lee isn’t going anywhere if he pitches like this.
Adam Duvall hit a two-run homer to spoil Lee’s return from the disabled list and the San Francisco Giants beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-4 on Monday night.
Making his first start since May 18 because of an elbow injury, Lee (4-5) had a rare rough outing against San Francisco. Lee was 5-0 with a 0.88 ERA in six career games against the Giants. He allowed five earned runs in 51 innings in those six starts before giving up six runs and 12 hits in 5 2-3 innings in this one.
If Lee shows he’s healthy and pitches effectively, he is a prime candidate for a trade before the July 31 non-waiver deadline. But he certainly didn’t impress several scouts watching him pitch at Citizens Bank Park.
“I could care less about the scouts or trade rumors,” Lee said. “I’ve never cared about them. My goal is to go out there and give my team a chance to win. I’m in Philly and I want this team to win.”
The four-time All-Star and 2008 AL Cy Young Award winner already was traded once by the Phillies in December 2009 on the same day they acquired Roy Halladay in a separate deal. The Phillies are headed toward their second straight losing season and will be looking to acquire young players from contending teams for some of their high-priced veterans.
“How else am I supposed to look at it other than I want to win (here) and I expect to win?” Lee said. “It’s not my job to make trades.”
Giants starter Ryan Vogelsong gave up four runs — three earned — and 11 hits in three-plus innings. But San Francisco’s bullpen combined for six scoreless innings.
George Kontos (2-0) gave up one hit and struck out three in two innings in relief to earn the win. Santiago Casilla pitched the ninth for his sixth save in nine tries.
The teams combined to hit 21 singles before Duvall launched a homer to straightaway center to give the Giants a 5-4 lead in the sixth. Hunter Pence’s RBI single with two outs made it 6-4 and sent Lee to an early exit. Pence hit an RBI triple off Jeff Manship in the eighth.
“It’s good to be back, but I would’ve liked the results to be different,” Lee said. “I wasn’t locating well and I was behind in the count.”
“First time in two months, he had some rust,” manager Ryne Sandberg said of Lee.
Ryan Howard gave the Phillies a 4-3 lead in the fourth on a checked-swing single to left that chased Vogelsong. Kontos entered with runners on first and third, struck out Marlon Byrd and Domonic Brown and retired Cody Asche on a liner to right.
Asche made two sensational plays over two innings at third base. He saved two runs by making a diving grab of Pence’s sharp grounder with the bases loaded and two outs in the third. Then he robbed Marco Scutaro with a diving catch of a hard liner leading off the fourth.
Jimmy Rollins gave the Phillies a 2-1 lead with a two-run single with the bases loaded and two outs in the second. Buster Posey hit a two-run single to center to make it 3-2 in the third.
Gregor Blanco’s RBI single to right in the second gave the Giants a 1-0 lead. Byrd threw out Michael Morse trying to score from second base on the play. Morse ran into catcher Cameron Rupp and was upended over the plate before being tagged out. Giants manager Bruce Bochy challenged the call, but a video review confirmed he was out.
Sandberg had a successful challenge in the seventh inning when replays showed Asche beat a throw to first for an infield single. The game ended with a challenge when Brown grounded out to third and a review upheld the call.
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