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Despite allowing four earned runs in five innings in his second consecutive unimpressive start, Cole Hamels and the Phillies topped the lowly Washington National 7-4 at Citizens Bank Park in Philly's 2010 home opener.Hamels allowed six hits in the start but battled out of constant jams to notch his second win of the season.
Hamels got through the first inning easy but the Nationals got on the board first behind a Josh Willingham homerun to start off the second. The Nats made it 4-1 in the top of the fourth on a Pudge Rodriguez single that scored Christian Guzman and two batters later if was Nationals pitcher Jason Marquis who plated two on a two-out double.
The Phillies countered with two runs in the bottom of the fifth on a Ryan Howard single and a Jayson Werth fielders choice. Hamels was pulled in the top of the sixth after 109 pitches, most were his typical fastball and change-ups with no sight of the sinker he was allegedly developing in the pre-season.
The Phils took the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth with back to back singles from Juan Castro and Placido Polanco. Castro started in the place of injured Jimmy Rollins who was pulled from the starting lineup before the first pitch due to a right calf strain.
Chase Utley sealed the win for the Phillies with a one-out two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth to put the Phillies on top 7-4. Utley finished 1-3 with the two RBI's.
Ryan Madson played cleanup duty pitching a perfect ninth inning to grab his second save of the season. Madson is going to be filling the closer role for a next few weeks with the news that closer Brad Lidge had a rough outing in his most recent rehab start.
The Phillies are now 6-1 and have two more games with the Nats at home before hosting NL East foes the Florida Marlins and the Atlanta Braves.
Game Notes: Ryan Howard finished 2-4 with a double and an RBI... The Phillies bullpen did not allow a hit in 3 1/3 innings pitched... Each Phillies 1-5 batters had an RBI and went a combined 7-18 and no strikeouts.