Ibanez Rescues Lidge, Phillies

Raul’s 10th inning double bails out Phillies closer in 9-6 win

Raul Ibanez has struggled this season but Tuesday night his found his swing again.

Raul ended former Phillie Arthur Rhodes' record-tying streak of scoreless appearances with a run-scoring double in the 10th inning Tuesday night, sending the Phightins to a soothing 9-6 victory at Cincinnati.

The day started badly for the Phillies, who put half of their starting infield (Chase Utley and Placido Polanco) on the disabled list. It got worst when Joey Votto hit a tying, three-run homer with two outs in the ninth off beleaguered closer Brad Lidge (1-0), leaving the game in the hands of Cincinnati's best reliever.

Rhodes (2-2) had allowed only one run all season, way back on April 10. Since then, he had made 33 straight scoreless appearances, matching the major leagues' season record.

“You hate to see Arthur's streak end like that,” manager Dusty Baker said. “He was facing some tough hitters. All good things must come to an end.”

Luckily for the Phillies it ended when it did.

Ryan Howard started Philadelphia's rally with a leadoff double, a hint that things had turned for Rhodes. Jayson Werth walked, and Ibanez doubled off Drew Stubbs' glove at the wall in center to put the Phillies back in control.

“It would have been a tough game for us to lose,” manager Charlie Manuel -- who was tossed right before Ibanez’s go-ahead hit -- said. “It was a good win, a tremendous win.”
Wilson Valdez – who started at second base for Utley the first time this season -- hit his third homer, a three-run shot off well-rested rookie Mike Leake. He also drove in a run on a fielder's choice in the 10th, matching his career high with four RBI.

“Just take it one by one,” Valdez -- who had only one homer in his career entering this season -- said. “It's kind of tough right now, but we've just got to play the game the right way.”

Joe Blanton gave up three runs in 7 2-3 innings, and the Phillies turned it over to a closer who had blown only one save this season.

Lidge started the ninth and got the first two outs. He walked Brandon Phillips, then gave up a single by Orlando Cabrera and Votto's tying homer deep to center, his 17th. J.C. Romero pitched the 10th for his third save in four tries.

Manuel was ejected by plate umpire C.B. Bucknor for arguing a ball-and-strike call from the dugout during the winning rally in the 10th. Bucknor motioned that Manuel bumped his forehead with the brim of his cap while he complained.

“I was screaming at him because he kept saying the ball was not low,” Manuel said. “But the ball was low. He called some bad ones all night.”

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