Cloyd pushes Phillies above .500 for first time

Cloyd pushes Phillies above .500 for first time

Cloyd pushes Phillies above .500 for first time

MILWAUKEE -- There's a lot of pressure replacing Roy Halladay in the Phillies' rotation, but Tyler Cloyd certainly is handling it well.

Cloyd scattered four hits over 6 2/3 shutout innings and the Phillies won their fifth consecutive game to push above .500 for the first time this year with a 5-1 win over the Brewers on Thursday night at Miller Park.

"I don't think you can fill in for Roy, a pitcher with that status and how great he is," Cloyd said. "For me, it's just go out there and compete and give the team a chance to win every time. That's been my main goal ever since I got up here. That's all I concentrate on."

Cloyd has kept the Phillies in games while filling in for Halladay, who had right shoulder surgery on May 15. The right-hander has given up two earned runs or less in four of his five starts and has a 3.68 ERA.

"He definitely made good pitches when he had to, and he took us to a good spot in the game and we held," manager Charlie Manuel said. "He did an outstanding job."

On a night the Phillies took shortstop J.P. Crawford with their first-round pick in the First-Year Player Draft, it was Delmon Young -- the first overall pick by Tampa Bay in the 2003 Draft -- who homered for the Phillies (31-30). His solo homer, his sixth this year, capped the Philadelphia scoring in the fifth inning.

Cloyd (2-2) allowed only one runner to reach third in beating the Brewers five days after taking the loss in Milwaukee's 4-3 win over the Phillies on Saturday in Philadelphia. He allowed five walks while striking out two in 108 pitches, and said the game plan against the Brewers worked effectively.

"For me, it's definitely changing it up, mixing it up a lot," Cloyd said of facing the Brewers consecutively. "Not going over the same sequences that I have. That's the biggest thing we did today. We threw a lot of different sequences to hitters and really kept them off-balance."

Cloyd is pitching well, giving the Phillies another option for the rotation long-term this season. Right-hander John Lannon's first Minor League rehab assignment for Clearwater was rained out Thursday and Carlos Zambrano is slated to pitch for Double-A Reading on Friday night.

"I don't focus on any of that," Cloyd said of staying in the rotation. "I'm up here, obviously, to keep these guys in the game."

Milwaukee starter Wily Peralta (4-7) was battered for five runs in five innings after outdueling Cloyd in his last outing. The Brewers have lost 26 of their past 34 games.

"He was real sharp last time against these guys," Milwaukee catcher Jonathan Lucroy said. "I guess he felt a little out of whack or something, I'm not sure. It's hard in baseball sometimes. Guys are off, then they're on, it really is day-to-day games. Really hard to put a finger on, I guess."

The Phillies lost their first two games of the season, and were 26-30 after Peralta beat them on Saturday. In their five-game winning streak, Philadelphia has outscored its opponents 32-12.

"We're happy that the hard work is starting to pay off and we're starting to see it in the standings," said Michael Young, who went 3-for-5 while batting leadoff for the first time since Sept. 8, 2004. "We're very happy with our style of play right now. We want to keep doing that and keep pushing the envelope."

Manuel said his offense has had better approaches at the plate during the winning streak.

"We're starting to work counts better, and we're picking up some walks," he said. "Tonight, I felt we got a good start out of the gate."

Young and No. 2 batter John Mayberry, each had three hits.

"I know what I'm capable of, I just have to make sure I stay the course," Young said of leading off.

Young and Mayberry each hit singles to open the game, and Jimmy Rollins singled to right to load the bases.

Ryan Howard then hit a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Young for a 1-0 lead. Domonic Brown, who had two hits, a walk and two stolen bases, walked before Peralta threw a wild pitch to Young, allowing Mayberry to score to make it 2-0.

Mayberry's double scored Cloyd in the second to make it 3-0.

Erik Kratz's fielder's choice allowed Brown to score from third in the third for a 4-0 lead.

The Brewers scored a run in the eighth off Mike Adams on an RBI groundout by Lucroy, scoring Ryan Braun from third to cap the scoring.

Joe DiGiovanni is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.