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Millwood says injury is not serious

4/5/2003

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- This is the offense everyone expected from
the Philadelphia Phillies.

Kevin Millwood left after three innings because of a strained
right groin, but the Phillies went on to beat the previously
unbeaten Pittsburgh Pirates 16-1 Saturday behind Jimmy Rollins'
five hits and three RBIs.

Millwood, one of Philadelphia's three key offseason
acquisitions, didn't think his injury would force him to miss
Thursday night's start against his former team, the Atlanta Braves.

"It's not too serious,'' Millwood said.

The Pirates had opened the season with four consecutive wins,
including a three-game sweep of the Reds in Cincinnati's new Great
American Ball Park.

But Millwood, and four relievers shut down Pittsburgh, which
outscored its opponents 33-11 in the first four games.

Carlos Silva (1-0) relieved Millwood and pitched 2 2/3 scoreless
innings, allowing three hits and striking out four. Dan Plesac
retired the four batters he faced, Terry Adams pitched a scoreless
eighth and Jose Mesa got the final three outs.

"We just didn't get the hits when we needed them,'' Pirates
manager Lloyd McClendon said.

Rollins hit three doubles and scored four runs, snapping a
3-for-19 slump. It was his second career five-hit game.

"It was a lot of fun,'' Rollins said. "I'm taking the same
swing. My approach to getting there is shorter. My stride is
shorter and I closed my stance.''

Bobby Abreu hit a three-run homer and Mike Lieberthal hit his
100th career homer as the Phillies racked up 19 hits.

"This is the kind of day we needed,'' said Pat Burrell, who had
two hits and two RBI. "This is the run production we can have if
everybody plays the way they're capable.''

The Phillies chased Pirates starter Jeff D'Amico with four runs
in the fifth inning. Placido Polanco started the inning with a
single and went to second on Abreu's fly out.

Jim Thome was intentionally walled with a 3-0 count, and Burrell
followed with a two-run double, giving the Phillies a 4-1 lead.
Burrell's hit snapped a 2-for-17 slump.

After David Bell was hit by a pitch, Lieberthal had an RBI
single and pinch-hitter Marlon Byrd added a run-scoring grounder to
make it 6-1.

D'Amico (0-1) gave up six runs -- four earned -- and eight hits in
4 1-3 innings in his Pirates debut. The right-hander was 6-10 with
a 4.94 ERA with the Mets last season.

"They have an outstanding lineup,'' D'Amico said. "The first
two guys get on and then they have the big guys coming up.''

Abreu gave the Phillies a 9-1 lead in the sixth with his first
homer of the season, a three-run shot off Joe Beimel. Rollins'
two-run double off Julian Tavarez made it 11-1 in the seventh.
Lieberthal hit a solo homer off Brian Boehringer in the eighth.

An RBI grounder by Thome and a single by Bell put Philadelphia
ahead 2-0 in the first.

Randall Simon had a two-out RBI single off Millwood in the
third.

Millwood, acquired from Atlanta last December, allowed one run
and six hits. Millwood, who was 18-8 with a 3.24 ERA for the Braves
a year ago, beat Florida in the season opener last Monday.

Game notes
After the game, the Phillies recalled RHP Eric Junge from
Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre and sent 2B Chase Utley to Scranton.
... The paid attendance on a cold, dreary day was 22,693, less than
half of the sellout crowd of 59,269 that showed up for Friday's
home opener. ... Pirates RF Reggie Sanders got the day off, even
though he had four homers and 11 RBI in the first four games. ...
Home plate umpire Joe West lost track of the count after calling
Thome out on strikes in the third. Thome stood at the plate until
West realized he called the third strike. ... Thome was 2-for-5
with three RBIs in his second game at Veterans Stadium.