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Category: Roy Halladay

Bet you haven't seen this before

Phillips_300 The National League division series between the Philladelphia Phillies and Cincinnati Reds isn't even two games old yet and it's already produced a number of rare moments.

In the opener there was Roy Halladay's no-hitter, just the second postseason no-hitter in history. But in Game 2, Cincinnati leadoff hitter Brandon Phillips nearly went that one better, hitting a home run, a single and a double in his first three at-bats. That left him a triple shy of the first postseason cycle when he came to bat in the seventh and popped out.

But wait, there's more.

The Reds committed a league-low 72 errors during the regular season but made two on consecutive two-out plays in the fifth inning Friday, leading to a pair of unearned runs for Philadelphia. Then they made two on the same play in the seventh, when Jay Bruce missed Jimmy Rollins' line drive to right and Phillips dropped the relay at second, allowing two unearned runs to score.

Three innings earlier the Reds got a free run of their own when Chase Utley committed two errors, sandwiched around a Roy Oswalt wild pitch.

But wait, there's even more.

In the sixth inning, Cincinnati relievers Arthur Rhodes and Logan Ondrusek hit consecutive batters to load the bases. An inning later flame-thrower Aroldis Chapman hit Utley on the hand with a 102-mph fastball. The Reds hit just 50 batters all season; only six L teams hit fewer. Yet on Friday they plunked three in the span of four lineup spots.

Chapman, by the way, threw 21 pitches in the seventh inning, reaching 100 mph or more on 10 of them and hitting 99 on six others. If the Phillies were intimidated they didn't show it, scoring three times off the Cuban defector to take their first lead of the night. 

-- Kevin Baxter, reporting from Philadelphia

Photo: Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips rounds the bases after hitting a home run against the Phillies on Friday night. Credit: Christopher Barth / EPA

Roy Halladay no-hitter could mean big bucks for MLB

First came the history ... followed shortly thereafter by the effort to cash in.

Less than 24 hours after the Phillies' Roy Halladay pitched the second no-hitter in Major League Baseball postseason history, MLB Properties and its licensees announced they have created "an assortment of special T-shirts and other items that will be available" before Friday's second National League Division Series game in Philadelphia.

Among those are "DOC-tober No-No" T-shirts, which play off Halladay's nickname, Doc, as well as pennants, towels, key chains and other items. Many of those items will be available at mlb.com.

Meanwhile, the jersey Halladay wore Wednesday is on its way to the Hall of Fame. And MLB authenticators marked several other items, certifying that they were used in the historic game against the Cincinnati Reds. Among the items authenticated were multiple game-used baseballs, home plate, the pitching rubber, the lineup card from the Phillies dugout, all three sets of bases used in the game, buckets of dirt removed from the mound and the uniform used by plate umpire John Hirshbeck.

And as cheesy as it sounds, MLB isn't the first organization to try to cash in on Halladay's brilliance this season. After the Phillies' right-hander pitched a perfect game in Miami in May, the Marlins sold unused tickets from that game as souvenirs. And the Marlins charged face value -- ranging from $12 to more than $300 -- for the tickets, which were for a game that HAD ALREADY BEEN PLAYED.

What's more, the Marlins said they will count all tickets sold for that game -- including ones purchased months later -- in the official attendance figure.

-- Kevin Baxter, reporting from Philadelphia

Beckham returns in time to see history

Howard-Beckham You're never supposed to leave a baseball game until both sides have at least one hit. Apparently no one told the Galaxy's David Beckhman that. Because after showing up early for Wednesday's  National League Division Series opener to meet some of the Phillies' players and coaches, Beckham left in the fifth inning with Philadelphia's Roy Halladay working on a no-hitter.

But he had a good reason: The Galaxy, who were in Philadelphia to play the expansion Union on Thursday night, had a mandatory team meal at their nearby hotel. And after eating, Beckham rushed back to the ballpark in time to catch the final out of Halladay's historic no-hitter.

He also got into the clubhouse afterward, where Phillies' first baseman Ryan Howard said he considered the Galaxy star to be the team's good-luck charm. Howard and his teammates will likely have to get along without Beckham in Game 2 of their series with the Cincinnati Reds on Friday, though, as the first-place Galaxy is scheduled to fly back to Southern California following Thursday's match.

-- Kevin Baxter, reporting from Philadelphia

Photo: Phillies first-baseman Ryan Howard, left, with Galaxy star David Beckham

Reds' Brandon Phillips now has a place in history

In the 20-plus hours since Brandon Phillips was thrown out at first to end Roy Halladay's no-hitter, that final out has been replayed on TV oh, probably a billion times.

And this is just the start, said Phillips' manager, Dusty Baker, who has experience in these matters. Baker was an outfielder with the Dodgers when he grounded to third to end Nolan Ryan's last National League no-hitter.  That was 29 seasons ago, but Baker said he stills sees replays of that at-bat.

"That's a bad feeling when you're about to touch first base and see the first baseman reaching for the ball and you're facing the reality that you're out," said Baker, whose Cincinnati Reds need a win over the Phillies on Friday in Philadelphia to even their National League Division Series. "I just told Brandon, just like me, I've seen that Nolan Ryan no-hitter about 72 times. And Brandon's going  to see that [Halladay at-bat] probably the rest of his life."

-- Kevin Baxter in Philadelphia

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