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08/01/09 2:37 AM ET
Newest Phillies pitcher stymies Giants
Sadowski departs with tight shoulder after four innings
By Andrew Pentis / MLB.com
SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants hitters wouldn't have minded if their in-town visitors let the Trade Deadline pass without acquiring a former Cy Young Award winner. And after Cliff Lee four-hit them in a 5-1 loss Friday, they would prefer missing him pitch when arriving in Philadelphia on Sept. 1 for three more games against the National League East's first-place team. Lee's performance in Game 2 of the teams' season series left many of the 33,934 at AT&T Park hoping their own hardware holder, Tim Lincecum, would have been on turn Friday night. Instead, the home patrons got Ryan Sadowski and the Giants' first defeat in five games. "There's no secret to why guys like him and Timmy have Cy Youngs. You watch those guys pitch and they're consistently great. There's one thing to be consistently good, and there's one thing to be consistently great," said Sadowski, who left down 1-0 after four innings with tightness in his throwing shoulder. "[Lee] was impressive tonight." In his sixth Major League start, Sadowski (2-4) suffered his fourth straight loss. Forty-four of his 82 pitches were outside of home-plate umpire Todd Tichenor's strike zone, and Sadowski said his shoulder acting up forced his arm slot to drop, precipitating his early exit. "As the game went along, [my] command started going. That was pretty evident," said Sadowski, who will be re-evaluated Saturday. The rookie right-hander allowed one run on three hits but issued three free passes. He's walked at least three in all but one of his outings this season. "The stuff was great," said manager Bruce Bochy. "He just had trouble getting it where he wanted. ... He did a great job of keeping us in the game at that point, we just didn't want to take any chance [of injury] there." The Phillies' scoring began in the second with a solo home run from Jayson Werth (coincidentally whom manager Charlie Manuel chose over the Giants' Pablo Sandoval for the All-Star team, one night after Sandoval also went deep). They added three runs in the seventh on just one hit: Righty reliever Brandon Medders walked two, and lefty setup man Jeremy Affledt plunked Ryan Howard with a 3-2 curveball and issued another free pass before Werth smacked a two-run single to center field. "We had trouble throwing strikes there, and those two guys have done a tremendous job [this season]," Bochy said. "[Affeldt's] one of the best relievers in the game, but he's going to have his moments." Five members of the team's seven-man 'pen were only needed because Sadowski pitched four innings or less for the third straight time. It's been quite a falloff: Sadoswski began his career with 13 scoreless innings and won his first two Major League starts, the latter at home July 3. "I've kind of defied the laws of averages a little bit," he said on that early-July night. "Batted balls in play sometimes find holes. These last two games, they really haven't." These last four games, they really have. Over that span, the rookie right-hander allowed 14 earned runs in 15 1/3 innings and went 0-4. Conversely, Lee (1-0) made his first appearance with the Phillies since they acquired him via trade Wednesday and looked awfully good. Former Cleveland Indians teammate and current Giant Ryan Garko -- also a Trade Deadline casualty -- led a hitters-only meeting Thursday night, no doubt divulging all of his intel. "I was watching the video of his last start," Garko said of his pregame studies, "and I was playing first base." Maybe his new teammates weren't listening to the advice, for Garko working a 12-pitch walk in the second accounted for all of the Giants offense through 5 1/3 innings. Juan Uribe's looping double down the right-field line, which landed maybe three feet left of white chalk, ended Lee's no-hit bid. "Kind of what I expected," Garko said of facing Lee, adding he should have barreled up a pitch during his lengthy second-inning at-bat. "His changeup was better than I thought it might have been. ... A lot of these guys haven't seen Cliff ... and, obviously, he's pretty good." Former Phillie Aaron Rowand doubled in the eighth for his 1,000th career hit. He advanced to third on Edgar Renteria's bunt and scored on Uribe's sacrifice fly. That ended Lee's shutout attempt as well, but the Phillies left-hander tossed his fourth complete game of the season. Add this onto his domination of the Giants: Lee, an American League pitcher for eight seasons taking his first National League hacks, outhit every Giants hitter, singling with a line drive to left-center in the fourth and doubling off the wall in the eighth. In past Interleague Play, he entered Friday as a career 2-for-32 hitter.
Andrew Pentis is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.