Halladay handcuffs the Cardinals

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Halladay on the mound.jpgRoy Halladay is now 6-1 after stifling the Cardinals over seven innings in the Phillies 7-2 win. He worked out of early trouble and struck out nine while scattering — yes, scattering! — eight hits.

Best moment of the game. Seventh inning, Roy Halladay already has thrown 117 pitches and has just given up an RBI single to Pujols.  Charlie Manuel comes out to the mound to take the ball.  Except he doesn’t. We’ll learn later what Halladay actually said, but he effectively told Manuel that he wasn’t leaving the game.  Matt Holliday grounds out on the very next pitch and Halladay leaves the field to the roar of the crowd. Robin Roberts tribute anyone?

By the way, the above photo was taken this afternoon by Matt Slocum of the Associated Press.  It’s one of my favorite game shots of the year so far. It pretty much captures the “I’m gonna handle this myself” essence of Halladay.

Brewers’ and Dodgers’ benches empty after Manny Machado and Jesús Aguilar get into it

Harry How/Getty Images
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The Brewers and Dodgers haven’t had much action in Game 4 of the NLCS, bringing a 1-1 game through 10 innings and about four and a half hours. We finally got something to get the blood pumping, though, when Dodgers shortstop Manny Machado and Brewers first baseman Jesús Aguilar exchanged some words with each other, prompting both teams’ benches to spill onto the field.

With one out, Machado grounded a 3-1, 95 MPH fastball to shortstop Orlando Arcia, who made an easy throw to first base to complete the out. Machado, running the play out, dragged his left leg, slamming it into Aguilar’s leg as he crossed the bag, causing himself to stumble momentarily. Machado went back and jawed at Aguilar like it was his fault.

Machado has not had the best press in the NLCS. He failed to run out a grounder in Game 2, then made a couple of slides in Game 3 that attempted to interfere with Arcia at the second base bag. He was called for interference on the second one. Machado hasn’t earned the benefit of the doubt for his actions tonight.

It’s difficult to imagine Machado’s behavior during the NLCS will affect his windfall as a free agent this offseason, but he’s proving to be somewhat of a distraction for a team trying to get back to the World Series. And that’s not good.