Myers, Manuel nose to nose; Phils win

August 9, 2008 7:55:32 PM PDT
Brett Myers got his stuff and his snarl back. Myers pitched 7 2-3 sharp innings, Jimmy Rollins had four hits, and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 4-2 on Saturday night.

Myers (5-9) allowed one run and five hits, striking out six. The feisty right-hander wasn't pleased to leave with a runner on second and two outs in the eighth.

Myers muttered a few expletives when Phillies manager Charlie Manuel went to the mound. Manuel went after Myers in the dugout and the two briefly exchanged words nose-to-nose.

"I wanted to stay in," Myers said. "I'm a competitor. That's what I do. Sometimes your emotions get the best of you and you do something irrational. I should've respected his decision. It's patched up. We're buddies."

Manuel said he prefers a pitcher who doesn't want to exit a game.

"It was two strong-willed people kind of disagreeing," Manuel said. "Everything is all right. He wanted to stay in. I like that. In fact, if he doesn't want to stay in, I'd be mad."

J.C. Romero retired Doug Mientkiewicz for the final out after Myers departed. Chad Durbin finished for his first save after allowing a run in the ninth. Brad Lidge, who is 28-for-28 in save chances, was unavailable after throwing 24 pitches in one-third of an inning Friday.

The NL East-leading Phillies remained one game ahead of the New York Mets and are 2½ up on Florida.

Rollins, the reigning NL MVP, sparked a struggling offense that was shut out in consecutive games for the first time in nine years. He finished 4-for-4 with two triples in his four-hit game since last Sept. 1.

The Phillies snapped a 23-inning scoreless streak before making an out against Ian Snell (4-9).

Rollins led off with a line-drive triple down the right-field line and Shane Victorino followed with a double off the scoreboard in right. Ryan Howard's one-out RBI single made it 2-0.

The Pirates sliced the lead in half in the fourth on Nate McClouth's RBI double.

Rollins tripled off the wall in right leading off the seventh and scored on Victorino's single through a drawn-in infield for a 3-1 lead.

"We have to set the table for the bug guys," Rollins said of himself and Victorino.

Jayson Werth led off Philadelphia's eighth with a triple off Romulo Sanchez and scored on Greg Dobbs' single to make it 4-1. Brandon Moss' RBI single in the ninth capped the scoring.

Snell allowed three runs and eight hits in six innings. It was just his eighth quality start in 23 games.

"He struggled in the first inning then he settled in and threw the ball well," Pirates manager John Russell said.

A short trip to the minors has made a difference for Myers, the team's opening-day starter who was demoted on July 1 after going 3-9 with a 5.84 ERA in his first 17 starts. He's 2-0 with a 2.10 ERA in four starts since returning to the majors.

"Last two games he's been top-notch," Manuel said. "I'd say his stuff is back. He's got a different look about it."

Notes: Six members of the 1950 Whiz Kids, including Hall of Fame pitcher Robin Roberts, were honored before the game. The Phillies were swept by the New York Yankees in the World Series that year. ... Rollins has tripled twice in a game five times. He's batting .632 (12-for-19) with four triples and a homer off Snell. ... Manuel said Lidge had some shoulder stiffness, but his health is not a concern.