2007 National League Division Series 2
|2007 National League Division Series|
90 - 73 in the NL
|3 - 0
89 - 73 in the NL
|2007 MLB Postseason|
|AL||BOS - LAA||BOS - CLE||BOS - COL|
|CLE - NYY|
|NL||ARI - CHC||ARI - COL|
|PHI - COL|
|<< 2006||2008 >>|
The second National League Division Series of 2007 featured two teams that had been out of the postseason for well over a decade: 1993 marked the last such appearance for the Philadelphia Phillies, and 1995 for the Colorado Rockies. Both teams also had to overcome long odds to even reach the postseason, only clinching their spots on the season's last day for the Phillies, and by winning a thrilling one-game playoff against the San Diego Padres in the case of the Rockies. In mid-September, both teams had seemed entirely out of contention, the Phillies seven games behind the NL East-leading New York Mets, and the Rockies in fourth place in the wild card race. The Phillies could thank a collapse of historic proportion by the Mets for their division title - although they did play very well down the stretch - while the Rockies did it all on their own, winning an incredible 14 of their last 15 games, including the one-game playoff.
Both teams were known for their relentless hitting, in part a result of playing in hitter-friendly ballparks. In fact, the Rockies had posted the best ERA in the National League over the second half of the season, a stunning feat in light of the usually atrocious conditions for pitchers at Coors Field. They were each led by a top candidate for NL MVP: shortstop Jimmy Rollins for the Phillies, their lead-off hitter who had led the league in runs scored while providing great leadership, and left fielder Matt Holliday of the Rockies, the NL batting champion and RBI leader.
|1||Colorado Rockies 4, Philadelphia Phillies 2||October 3||Jeff Francis (1-0) vs. Cole Hamels (0-1)||3:07 p.m.|
|2||Colorado Rockies 10 at Philadelphia Phillies 5||October 4||Franklin Morales (ND) vs. Kyle Kendrick (0-1)||3:07 p.m.|
|3||Philadelphia Phillies 1 at Colorado Rockies 2||October 6||Jamie Moyer (ND) vs. Ubaldo Jimenez (ND)||9:37 p.m.|
Game 1 @ Citizens Bank Park
|WP: Jeff Francis (1-0), LP: Cole Hamels (0-1), SV: Manuel Corpas (1)|
|Home Runs: COL - Matt Holliday (1); PHI - Aaron Rowand (1), Pat Burrell (1)|
- Attendance: 45,655
Both teams started their young left-handed ace pitchers in Game 1 of the NLDS, 17-game winner Jeff Francis for Colorado, and All-Star Cole Hamels for Philadelphia. Due to the unusual mid-afternoon start, there were long shadows on the field which made it difficult for hitters. Unseasonably warm temperature in Philadelphia also hurt Hamels, who explained after the game that he had dressed too warmly and was sweating profusely by the 2nd inning.
Francis started out very strong, shutting out the Phillies over the first four innings before giving up solo home runs to Aaron Rowand and Pat Burrell in the 5th inning. The Phillies put two more runners on, before Francis retired Shane Victorino on a ground ball to end the threat. The Rockies got to Hamels in the 2nd inning, as Todd Helton led off with a triple, followed by a double by Garrett Atkins. Yorvit Torrealba drove in a second run with a one-out single. Hamels loaded the bases with two outs, before walking Troy Tulowitzki to force in a third run. That was the only trouble the young left-hander encountered all day, as he then retired the next 13 batters he faced.
With Colorado leading 3-2 after 6 innings, the bullpens came into action. For the Rockies, the tag team of LaTroy Hawkins, Brian Fuentes and Manuel Corpas eached pitched a scoreless inning. The Phillies' Tom Gordon gave up a solo home run to Matt Holliday with one out in the 8th to bring the final score to 4-2. Francis gave up four hits and struck out seven with two walks over 6 innings to earn the win. Hamels was saddled with the loss despite allowing only three hits in 6 2/3 innings. The southpaw walked four while striking out seven.
Game 2 @ Citizens Bank Park
|WP: Josh Fogg (1-0), LP: Kyle Kendrick (0-1), SV: Manuel Corpas (2)|
|Home Runs: COL - Troy Tulowitzki (1), Matt Holliday (2), Kazuo Matsui (1); PHI - Jimmy Rollins (1), Ryan Howard (1)|
- Attendance: 45,991
The Rockies brought the Phillies to the brink of elimination with a 10-5 victory in Game 2. Both teams started rookie pitchers who had made their major league debuts in 2006: Franklin Morales for Colorado, and Kyle Kendrick for Philadelphia. Because both teams had been involved in pennant races that went down to the season's last day, their managers were unable to set up optimal pitching rotations for the postseason. Both young starters struggled early: Kendrick gave up back-to-back solo homers to Troy Tulowitzki and Matt Holliday in the 1st, while Jimmy Rollins replied by crushing Morales' first pitch of the game for another long ball.
The Phillies took a 3-2 lead in the 2nd with a two-run triple by Rollins, but the outcome of the game was determined in the 4th. After a lead-off double by Garrett Atkins, Kendrick retired the next two batters. Manager Charlie Manuel then called for an intentional walk to Yorvit Torrealba on a 2-2 count to bring up the pitcher's spot. Rockies skipper Clint Hurdle lifted the ineffective Morales for pinch hitter Seth Smith, who had made his major league debut only two weeks earlier. Smith dribbled a slow ground ball towards third base for an infield single that loaded the bases. Manuel made his second fateful decision of the inning, lifting Kendrick, who seemed to have settled down after the 1st inning, in favor of Kyle Lohse. Kazuo Matsui hit a grand slam that put the Rockies up, 6-3, bringing an eerie silence to the record crowd of almost 46,000.
Josh Fogg, who had been roughed up by the San Diego Padres in his start in the October 1st playoff game, gave the Rockies two scoreless innings of relief. In the 6th, Colorado jumped on a wild Jose Mesa for two walks, a double by Torrealba, a triple by Matsui off Clay Condrey and a single by Holliday to score four runs and put the game seemingly out of reach at 10-3. The Phillies made an effort to get back in the game, though, with a solo homer by Ryan Howard off Jeremy Affeldt in the 6th, and an unearned run by pinch hitter Shane Victorino in the 7th. In the 8th, Philadelphia loaded the bases with two outs against reliever Brian Fuentes. Hurdle then brought in his closer, Manuel Corpas, to face Carlos Ruiz. Corpas induced an inning-ending ground ball. The Philies put two more men on with two outs in the 9th, but Corpas struck out Howard to end the game.
Game 3 @ Coors Field
|WP: Brian Fuentes (1-0) , LP: J.C. Romero (0-1) , SV: Manuel Corpas (3)|
|Home Runs: PHI - Shane Victorino (1)|
- Attendance: 50,724
The teams moved to Coors Field in Denver, CO for Game 3, featuring on the mound veteran lefty junk-baller Jamie Moyer for the Phillies and righthanded rookie hard thrower Ubaldo Jimenez for the Rockies. Their styles may have been quite different, but the two starting pitchers proved equally effective. After four and a half scoreless innings, the Rockies got on the scoreboard first when Kazuo Matsui drove a two-out triple past a diving Pat Burrell in the left field corner to score Yorvit Torrealba from first base. The game had been eventful before that, though, as a power outage caused by a computer glitch created a 14-minute delay in the top of the 2nd, and Moyer wiggled out of a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the inning.
Philadelphia's Shane Victorino tied the score with a solo home run off a hanging curveball in the 7th inning, only the second hit surrendered by Jimenez at that point. After Carlos Ruiz followed with a single, Jimenez was lifted in favor of Matt Herges, who completed the inning with no further damage. The Rockies then broke the Phillies' backs with two outs in the bottom of the 8th inning. With reliever J.C. Romero on the mound, Garrett Atkins and Brad Hawpe hit back-to-back singles to put runners on the corners. Manager Charlie Manuel chose to leave Romero in to face pinch hitter Jeff Baker, batting for pitcher Brian Fuentes. Baker came through with a single through the right side of the infield to give Colorado a 2-1 lead. Rockies' manager Clint Hurdle then brought in his closer, Manuel Corpas, to pitch the 9th. He set down the Philies in order to pick up his third save of the series. The Rockies were going on to face the Arizona Diamondbacks in the NLCS, having now run their winning streak to 17 wins in their last 18 games.
|Major League Baseball National League Division Series