The Miami Marlins played host to the Philadelphia Phillies tonight; opening a three game weekend series in brand new Marlins Park. Philadelphia came into the contest at 4-5 while Miami sported a demoralizing 1-8 record.
The Marlins are attempting to play as many games as possible with the roof open. Team statistics show that the ball carries better in the park when the roof if open. Watching tonight’s game, you wouldn’t have known the difference.
The Phillies came in swinging fairly hot bats, scoring 15 runs on 21 hits in their two wins against the New York Mets. The Phillies struggled against Marlins started Ricky Nolasco, scattering seven hits over six innings of work and allowing one run. Thankfully, John Lannan looked even more impressive than Nolasco, giving the Phils six tremendous innings of work, allowing one run on three hits.
It took the Fightin’s an extra inning to get the job done, but they escaped with a 3-1 win nonetheless; Chase Utley’s RBI triple being the difference. Jonathan Papelbon shut the door in the ninth and the Phillies improved their record to .500 at 5-5.
It was a boring game, one that had many Phillies fans wondering if they would thrown in a dud against the lowly Miami Marlins. It is natural for a team to sometimes play down to the level of the opponent. The Bleak atmosphere in Marlins Park did not help the tone of the game either. Regardless of how beautiful the park is, when you are used to playing in front of 45,000 screaming fans, it can be hard to get up for a game be watched by a rousing 18,000.
All excuses aside, these are the kind of trap games the Phillies need to watch out for through the season. As the old sports adage goes, “good teams find ways to win.” Call the Phils’ performance tonight what you want, they got the win, and have won three in a row now.