PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Vicente Padilla entered spring training
competing for the fifth spot in Philadelphia's rotation. He has
emerged as the Phillies' best pitcher.
Padilla pitched eight shutout innings and Pat Burrell hit a
three-run homer in the eighth, leading the Phillies to a 4-0
victory over the New York Mets on Tuesday night. Padilla (6-3) allowed three hits, struck out four and walked
two. He has as many wins as the rest of the starters combined. ``That was the best fastball, best stuff I've seen this year,''
Mets manager Bobby Valentine said. Jose Mesa pitched a scoreless ninth for the Phillies, who have
won two straight after losing six consecutive games during a road
trip. The Mets have lost two in a row after a five-game winning
streak. It was scoreless when Jimmy Rollins hit a double off Jeff
D'Amico (3-4) with one out in the eighth. After Marlon Anderson
flied out, Scott Rolen hit an RBI single. D'Amico left after intentionally walking Bobby Abreu, and
Burrell hit a three-run homer off David Weathers to make it 4-0.
Burrell has 11 homers and 33 RBI in 109 career at-bats against the
Mets. ``It was a 3-2 slider over the middle of the plate,'' Burrell
said. ``I was just looking for a pitch to hit.'' D'Amico, who tossed a two-hit shutout in his last start against
Los Angeles, had pitched 16 straight scoreless innings before the
eighth. He allowed three runs, five hits and struck out seven in 7
2-3 innings. ``I just keep thinking about the pitch to Rolen,'' D'Amico said.
``It was a stupid pitch.'' Padilla allowed back-to-back singles to Roger Cedeno and Roberto
Alomar to start the game, but didn't give up another hit until
Alomar led off the seventh with an infield single. The Phillies helped the right-hander by turning three double
plays, including two on Mike Piazza. ``I believe it was my best game,'' Padilla said through an
interpreter. ``I felt a little better than last time. I was able to
keep my fastball down. Padilla was four outs away from a no-hitter against his former
team Arizona on May 10, and finished with a two-hit shutout. He
gave up five runs in his next start. ``This is the best I've seen him pitch,'' Phillies manager Larry
Bowa said. ``He was in complete command. Against that lineup, that
was unbelievable. He pitched great. D'Amico struck out Travis Lee with a runner on third to end the
fourth inning. He fanned Abreu to leave a runner on second in the
sixth. Weathers hadn't allowed a run in his last 10 appearances,
spanning 13 2-3 innings before Burrell's homer. ``It was a terrible sequence to him,'' Weathers said. ``I hate
to ruin the game when Jeff pitched so well. It was a bad pitch in
The Phillies are 15-8 at home and 4-18 on the road. ...
There were more cheers for the Mets from the crowd of 21,090 at the
start of the game than for the Phillies at Veterans Stadium.
Philadelphia has the third-lowest attendance total in the NL. ...
D'Amico has pitched at least six innings in seven of his nine
starts, and has allowed three runs or less in the same amount. ...
Mets RF Jeromy Burnitz went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He has three
hits in his last 26 at-bats. SS Rey Ordonez was 0-for-2 and is in a
3-for-31 slump. ... Phillies RHP Robert Person, on the disabled
list with tendinitis in his right elbow, allowed two runs and three
hits in 3 1-3 innings in a rehab start with Triple-A Scranton.