In the second game of a quick two-game series, the Chicago Cubs lost 8-7 to the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field on Thursday night. The Cubs made a major rally in the bottom of the ninth inning after trailing by five runs, but they fell short with the game-tying run at first base.
Cubs starter Chris Volstad struggled badly, getting pulled giving up four runs on six hits during the first two innings of the game. Casey Coleman came in and pitched four solid innings of relief after that, but recent call-up Blake Parker made a painful throwing error in the eighth inning that ultimately lead to three runs scoring.
Roy Halladay pitched well for Philadelphia on Thursday, giving up just three runs on seven hits over eight innings. Doc didn't walk a single batter while displaying superb control all night long, but two of his allowed runs came on solo homers.
The Cubs made a major rally in the bottom of the ninth inning off Phillies reliever Jacob Diekman, but they fell short with the game-tying run at the plate. Welington Castillo hit a three-run double with the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth to cut the lead to two and Darwin Barney followed up with an RBI single off Jonathan Papelbon, but Reed Johnson grounded out to third to end the game.
Both Starlin Castro and Castillo hit home runs for Chicago, but the offense needed to do far more damage after the pitching staff left the team behind. The Cubs are now 15-23 on the season as they go into this weekend's three-game series against the White Sox.
For more news and updates from around the MLB, drop by Baseball Nation with Rob Neyer, or dig deeper into the stats at Beyond the Box Score. Also, check out Cubs blog Bleed Cubbie Blue and Phillies blog The Good Phight.