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Phils' Rolen Over Devil Rays


Scott Rolen picked up where he left off yesterday.

The third baseman homered twice for the second straight day and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 16-3 Monday night to climb nine games over .500 for the first time in nearly four years.

"Obviously we had a good night, but he started it and kind of set the tone," manager Terry Francona said.

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Game Summary

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  • "You hope for nights like this. They don't happen very often. You don't want to be on the wrong end of it, but it happens that way, too, sometimes."

    Rolen, who homered in his last at-bat Sunday to give the Phillies a 3-2 victory in the series opener, hit a two-run homer in the first and a solo shot in the third.

    His streak of home runs in consecutive plate appearances ended at three when he delivered an RBI double during Philadelphia's five-run fourth inning.

    The power surge gives Rolen five homers since the All-Star break and 10 in July, the most in a month by a Phillies hitter since Mike Schmidt had 12 in July 1982. He has 24 this season.

    He rejected the notion the Phillies need him to carry the team to remain in the race for a playoff berth.

    "I think this team has proved that all year. I don't think anybody needs to carry this team for any stretch," Rolen said. "There's too many good players, too many good hitters for one person to even consider trying to carry the team."

    Chad Ogea (5-9) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings to stop a personal three-game losing streak. The Phillies supported him with a season-high 22 hits 13 in the first four innings while building a 10-0 lead.

    The loss, which dropped Tampa Bay to 3-14 in interleague play, was the most lopsided in the Devil Rays' short history. The previous biggest margin of defeat was 10 runs.

    With the game ending only 14 hours before the series finale was to begin, manager Larry Rothschild didn't want to dwell on how embarrassing it was to give up so many runs.

    "There's nothing else you can do. Nobody likes to get back like we did," Rothschild said.

    Boggs agreed, saying: "16-3 is about the same as 3-2 ... unless you pitched in it."

    Rolen, 3-for-5 with four RBIs, hit his first homer off Bryan Rekar (6-5). He led off the third with a 429-foot shot the longest this season by a visiting player at Tropicana Field against Dave Eiland.

    Rob Ducey and Alex Arias each had three hits and three RBIs for the Phillies, who, at 50-41, are nine games over .500 for the first time since July 27, 1995.

    Fred McGriff hit a two-run homer, his 20th, for Tampa Bay in the fourth inning. Dave Martinez, Paul Sorrento, Miguel Cairo and John Flaherty had the other hits off Ogea.

    Notes:

  • Umpire John Hirschbeck missed the game because of illness, leaving a three-man crew. He is expected back for the series finale on Tuesday.
  • Bobby Abreu was 4-for-6 with two RBIs for the Phillies.
  • Rolen has eight multihomer games in his career, three this season.
  • Rico Brogna had just three hits, all doubles, in 28 at-bats before getting singles in his first three trips to the plate Monday night.
  • During his three-game losing streak, Ogea allowed 16 runs and 21 hits in 14 1-3 innings.
  • Tampa Bay SS Kevin Stocker sat out with tendinitis in his left knee. He missed six games before the All-Star break because of the same problem.
  • The Devil Rays have lost five of seven games since Jose Canseco went on the disabled list July 10.
  • McGriff's homer was his 378th, one behind Orlando Cepeda and Tony Perez on the career list. It also gives him 12 seasons with 20-plus home runs.

    ©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

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