Monday, October 19, 2009 at 8:56 p.m.
Boss Hogg blew it.
Jonathan Broxton imploded in the bottom of the 9th Monday night, giving up a walk, hitting a batter, then giving up a two-out double to Jimmy Rollins that scored the tying and winning runs and put the Phillies one victory away from eliminating the Dodgers for the second consecutive year.
Broxton entered the game in the bottom of the 8th and retired Jayson Werth to end the inning. But the Dodgers had a long, 18-minute at-bat in the top of the 9th, and that may have stiffened Broxton's arm on another cold night in Philly.
But, no excuses--Broxton didn't come through, and the Dodgers are now faced with beating the Phillies three straight.
Despite another shaky start from Randy Wolf, who gave up a two-run homer to Ryan Howard in the 1st, he settled down and along with the bullpen they held the Phillies to four hits through eight innings.
Broxton got one out in the ninth, then walked Matt Stairs on four pitches. You gotta wonder if Broxton was thinking about the home run Stairs hit off him last year. He then hit Carlos Ruiz on the first pitch to the catcher, which put the tying run on second base. After retiring Greg Dobbs for the second out, up came Rollins. Fat fastball on a 0-1 count. Game over.
Now there's a day off before Game 5, giving the Dodgers an extra day to lament this loss. Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to pitch. The youngster withered under the pressure of opening this series. How will he do with the season on the line? Vicente Padilla, who was great in Game 2, would also be available on regular rest. Joe Torre has a big decision to make Tuesday.