The last time our heroes did battle in the Mile High City, it was blowout turned slug fest turned nail-biter that just saw the Phillies squeak by with a win, thanks to a nine-run inning that proved to be just enough offense to down the Colorado Rockies in the 12-11 victory for the Phils.
Monday night the Phils opened a three-game set against the Rocks with what proved to be a pitcher's dual in comparison, but it was no less thrilling, as the Phillies needed extra innings and a pair of late-inning long balls for a 4-3 win.
With the Phillies fresh off a sweep of the Pittsburgh Pirates, they came into Coors Field with one of the hottest offenses in the league. Meanwhile, the Rockies, heavily favored to make a run in National League West at the outset, have found themselves on the outside looking in. They even traded their staff ace, Ubaldo Jimenez, before the trade deadline on Sunday.
The Phils did not get off to a good start, as they were unable to do much with the bats in the early goings against Rockies' starter Jhoulys Chacin, save for a run in the top of the seventh that came after Hunter Pence was knocked in on an RBI double from Raul Ibanez.
Meanwhile, the Rockies got just enough off Cole Hamels, who allowed a pair of runs on six hits in six innings, where he struck out five. The big blow came in the bottom of the second, when Seth Smith, facing Hamels for the first time in his career, took the lefty deep to center field, a two-run shot, for his ninth long ball of the year. They added another in the bottom of the seventh on a homer from Chris Iannetta, coming off relief pitcher Michael Stutes.
With a 3-1 lead heading into the top of the ninth, the Rockies sent closer Huston Street to the hill to try to notch his 29th save of the season. After two quick outs, it looked as I f the Rockies had it all wrapped up, until Carlos Ruiz doubled to left to keep the inning alive for John Mayberry, Jr. who battled Street to a 3-2 count before driving a two-run homer to left -- his seventh of the season -- to even things up at 3.
Antonio Bastardo (5-0) held the Rockies scoreless in the bottom of the frame to send it to extra innings, where the Phillies responded immediately, when Shane Victorino led off the inning with a solo shot of his own -- his 10th of the season -- off Rex Brothers (1-2) to give the Phillies their first lead of the night.
One run is all they would need, as Ryan Madson came on to set down the Rockies in order netting his 19th save of the season.
The win put the Phillies 30 games over .500 with a record of 69-39 and a season-high seven game lead in the division.
Game 2 features a pair of right-handers, as Kyle Kendrick (5-5, 3.52) takes on Aaron Cook (2-5, 5.05) on Tuesday night.