PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Mike Lieberthal gave Philadelphia's offense
the lift it needed and the Phillies a first win to remember at
their brand new ballpark.
Lieberthal hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning, rallying
the Phillies over the Cincinnati Reds 6-4 Thursday to snap their
five-game losing streak."It was nice to see us get some runs, even though it was
late," manager Larry Bowa said. "Hopefully we can build on this
and start a run of our own."Philadelphia's lineup had been quiet all season, scoring only 16
runs in its first seven games with two home runs. While Lieberthal
hit one of the homers, he was just 2-for-27 this season.The Phillies showed few signs of snapping out their funk against
starter Jose Acevedo and trailed 4-2 before breaking through
against Cincinnati's bullpen in the eighth inning.Reds reliever Phil Norton allowed a single to Placido Polanco
and walked Bobby Abreu. Jim Thome then grounded into a forceout,
putting runners at the corners.Ryan Wagner (0-1) gave up a two-strike, bloop RBI single to Pat
Burrell, who had struck out swinging his first three times.Lieberthal connected for a homer to left field on a windy day."We just needed to come out with a win, and a comeback win at
that, that hopefully can give us momentum going into the next few
games," Lieberthal said. "We might stay a little more positive.
Maybe it will help our confidence. It's not a cure all. Guys still
have to make adjustments at the plate."Said Reds manager Dave Miley: "Lieby's been struggling. He hit
it pretty good."Rheal Cormier (2-2) pitched a scoreless eighth for the win.
Billy Wagner worked the ninth for his second save.Wagner made a fast impression on the Phillies' fans in his first
home game. Wagner entered to Metallica's "Enter Sandman," then
reached 100 mph on one pitch, prompting a huge ovation."I finally get the chance to pitch in front of the home crowd,
so there's a little pressure," Wagner said. "I wasn't too caught
up in blowing the game. I was more worried about getting that first
guy out."Philadelphia lost the opener in its new ballpark Monday. After
an off-day Tuesday, the Phillies and Reds were rained out.The Phillies had been held in check by Acevedo, who struck out
eight in 6 1-3 innings before getting knocked out on a line drive
off his hand and a homer."We really looked bad today at the plate early on," Lieberthal
said. "It looked ugly. We got a lot of boos -- deserving."The Reds led 1-0 against Vicente Padilla when they scored three
times in the fourth inning.Padilla walked Austin Kearns and gave up a single to Sean Casey.
After an out, Jason LaRue was intentionally walked to load the
bases. Juan Castro, playing for Barry Larkin, hit a double to
right.LaRue was thrown out at home, but Castro advanced to third.
Castro scored on a wild pitch, bringing out the boo birds.Padilla allowed a walk to Kearns after getting ahead 1-2, and
gave up Casey's single on an 0-2 pitch.Padilla gave up five hits, walked four and struck out six in
five innings.Acevedo cruised in his first career appearance against the
Phillies. He worked out of his only jam in the second inning when
he whiffed Padilla to squirm out of a bases-loaded situation.Marlon Byrd hit a line drive off Acevedo's pitching hand with
one out in the seventh. It seemed to shake up Acevedo a bit, as he
tossed a few warmup pitches to compose himself. He could have used
a few more, allowing a two-run homer to David Bell."It affected my grip a little," Acevedo said. "I lost my
command a little bit."
Larkin did not start because of tenderness in his forearm.
... LaRue crashed hard into the padded rail in front of the
Phillies' dugout while chasing a foul ball. He stayed in the game.
... The Phillies celebrated Jackie Robinson Day by paying tribute
to the five living members of the Philadelphia Stars Negro League
team. Honored were Harold Gould, Stanley Glenn, Wilmer Harris, Bill
Cash and Mahlon Duckett, who shared their remembrances of Robinson.
... Bell's home run was his first since June 6, 2003.