Phils Get Sixth Straight Win

J.C. Romero walked off a big league mound for the first time since Game 5 of the World Series, pumped his fist and gazed skyward.

Romero returned from his 50-game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance and pitched 1 1/3 innings in Philadelphia's 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres, the Phillies' sixth straight win.

The left-hander allowed an unearned run on two hits, a walk and a passed ball by Chris Conte.

"I was disappointed with my outing, but I'm glad it's over and done with," Romero said.

Romero, who earned two wins in Philadelphia's World Series victory over Tampa Bay last year, retired left-hander Brian Giles opening the ninth, then made way for Ryan Madson. Romero pumped his fist and gazed skyward as he walked to the dugout, where he received handshakes from his teammates.

He came on to open the eighth with a 5-0 lead. He allowed David Eckstein's RBI single with one out. After walking Adrian Gonzalez, the major league home run leader with 22, Romero got Kevin Kouzmanoff to line out to shortstop Jimmy Rollins, who doubled Eckstein off second to end the inning.

"I really wanted to put hitters away when I could, but at least I found a groove, when I came out in the second inning, I did what I'm supposed to do, which is getting good left-handed hitters out. But I know with my stuff I should be able to put right-handers away when they're behind in the count."

Ryan Howard hit a two-run homer to straightaway center field off Chris Young with two outs in the first, his 16th. It was Howard's second homer of the series and the sixth for the Phillies, who swept the three-game series with 20 runs on 33 hits -- 15 for extra bases.

J.A. Happ (4-0) held the Padres to four hits in seven scoreless innings, the longest of his eight career starts over two seasons. He struck out four and walked two.

"I just tried to be aggressive. I mixed it up early in the game a little bit more and kept the off-balance, I guess," Happ said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us