Monday, April 1, 2013

Utley nears in on cycle, but Phils lose 7-5

April 1, 2013

             1 2 3  4 5 6  7 8 9    R H E
Phillies 0 0 0  1 2 0  1 1 0    5 10 0
Braves  2 1 1  0 1 2  0 0 -    7 10 0
W: Luis Avilan (1-0)  L: Cole Hamels (0-1)  S: Craig Kimbrel (1)
Full Box Score (from

The Phillies didn't get off to the start they wanted to, but were able to bounce back and keep within striking distance, even though they never got to take the lead.

Cole Hamels (L, 0-1), in his first Opening Day start, gave up five earned runs (three of them homers) off seven hits across five innings of work in a 7-5 loss to the Atlanta Braves.

The Phillies fell into a 4-0 hole by the end of third inning, but Chase Utley proved to be the spark in their offense.

Utley hit a solo home run,the 200th of his career, in the top of the fourth to give the Phillies their first run of the season, then knocked in two more runs with a single in the fifth to cut the Braves' lead down to one.

A one-out triple in the seventh showed that Utley's knees weren't a bother, as he flew around the bases after hitting the ball into right-center field. Ryan Howard brought Utley home on a sacrifice groundout to first, making it a 7-4 game after Atlanta tacked on three more runs in the two innings prior.

Utley needed a double to complete the cycle, but popped out to Atlanta shortstop Andrelton Simmons in his last at-bat in the ninth. He would finish the night 3-for-5 with 3 RBIs.

Erik Kratz, making his first Opening Day start at catcher, hit an RBI single in the eighth that brought in John Mayberry Jr. from third to make it 7-5, cutting the Phillies' deficit to two.

But Braves closer Craig Kimbrel closed out the ninth with a one-two-three inning to secure the win.

The Phillies will go back at it on Wednesday for game two of the three-game opening series against the Braves.

Roy Halladay, who has been a big question mark over spring training, will get the start against Atlanta's Paul Maholm.

(Image from

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