Moyer baffles Mets as Phillies win again
Jamie Moyer fooled hitters with slow stuff, painted the corners and got outs the same way he's been doing it for 23 years and 600 starts.
Moyer pitched neatly into the seventh inning, Jimmy Rollins hit a two-run double and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the New York Mets 4-1 on Saturday.
"I really haven't figured anything out," Moyer said. "It's a puzzle. I'm trying to piece it together and get good results."
Moyer (7-6) allowed one run and five hits in 6 1-3 innings to win his third straight start. The 46-year-old Moyer tied Carl Hubbell for 42nd on the all-time list with his 253rd career win.
The NL East-leading Phillies have taken the first two games against the rival Mets to win just their third series at home and first against a team other than the lowly Washington Nationals. The defending World Series champions have been awful at Citizens Bank Park, going 15-22. They were 1-8 in their previous homestand.
"It's good to have a winning streak at home," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.
Mets starter Fernando Nieve (3-2) gave up four runs and six hits, walking six in 5 2-3 innings. He doesn't have to worry about losing his spot in the starting rotation because the Mets announced that Tim Redding is heading to the bullpen to make room for Oliver Perez.
"I missed a lot of spots," Nieve said. "They seemed to be taking more pitches today."
Struggling setup man Ryan Madson got the last two outs in the eighth and Brad Lidge finished with a rare perfect inning for his 15th save in 21 chances.
"Location will be the big difference," Lidge said. "I just have to build on it."
Moyer didn't allow a hit until Alex Cora singled leading off the fourth. The soft-tossing lefty baffled the Mets' hitters with his usual assortment of offspeed pitches and a fastball that barely reaches 80 mph. Moyer only had one strikeout and several outs were hit hard. He lowered his ERA to 5.72.
"They put the ball in play quickly," Moyer said. "I just try to go out, feel good and make good pitches."
Jayson Werth's sacrifice fly gave Philadelphia a 1-0 lead in the first. The Phillies loaded the bases on singles by Shane Victorino and Ryan Howard sandwiched around a walk to Chase Utley. Werth's high fly to right scored Victorino, who had three hits for the second consecutive game.
Pedro Feliz singled to start Philadelphia's fourth and Paul Bako walked. After Moyer sacrificed, Rollins lined a double down the right-field line to make it 3-0.
Rollins is 5 for 11 with three doubles after going 0 for 28. He walked twice for just the second time this season. The 2007 NL MVP was benched four games during a recent road trip and is hitting just .213.
Nieve helped himself with an RBI single in the fifth that cut the deficit to 3-1. Nick Evans singled with two outs and Omir Santos followed with an infield single. Nieve hit a soft liner to left to score Evans.
New York's sloppy defense helped the Phillies add an insurance run in the sixth. Bako walked after third baseman David Wright allowed his foul pop to fall behind him down the left-field line. Nieve left after walking Rollins with two outs. Pat Misch came in and got Victorino to hit a foul pop, but catcher Santos dropped it near the Phillies' dugout. Victorino then singled in a run to make it 4-1. It was the 34th unearned run the Mets have allowed this season.
"I think they're trying," Mets manager Jerry Manuel said. "They're just not playing the best baseball at this point. We're struggling right now. It's tough."
Perez will return from the disabled list to start Wednesday against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Perez, sidelined since May with a right knee injury, is 1-2 with a 9.97 ERA in five starts this season. ... Hubbell and Moyer are tied for 10th for most wins among left-handers. ... Moyer's 600th career start tied him with Pete Alexander for 21st on the all-time list. ... The Phillies are 3-9-1 in home series.