PHILADELPHIA Justice was served for Zach Duke, who this morning was named to the NL squad to the All-Star Game.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, who will skipper the NL team, chose Duke to replace Giants pitcher Matt Cain, who last night was struck near his right elbow by a line drive.
Duke is the first Pirates starter to be an All-Star since Denny Neagle in 1995.
“When I got the ballpark this morning, JR (manager John Russell) called me into his office,” Duke said. “I was thinking, ‘What did I do to get into trouble already?’ This is definitely a very welcome surprise.”
Duke is 8-8 with a 3.29 ERA in 18 starts. He’s thrown three complete games, but two of them have been losses. “If we’d scored a few more runs for him, he would’ve been a shoo-in (as an All-Star),” Russell said. “Things have a way of working out.”
Duke already has matched his win total from the past two seasons combined. He’s on track for his best season since his stellar rookie year, when the left-hander went 8-2 with a 1.18 ERA.
“Knowing all the work I’ve put into it, to have something like this to kind of verify the work is great,” Duke said.
The Phillies, who have five players on the roster along with Manuel, have offered Duke a seat on their plane to St. Louis for the All-Star Game.
• Lost amid the rubble of the ninth-inning collapse last night was a fantastic defensive play by shortstop Jack Wilson in the seventh inning. With speedy Jimmy Rollins on first base, Shane Victorino hit a blooper into the no-man’s land in shallow left field. Wilson made an over-the-shoulder catch while sliding on his knees, then fired to first base to double off Rollins. “When I threw it, I thought the ball was going to hit (Rollins) and I was like, ‘Aw, crap,’ ” Wilson said. “But it bounced right over his shoulder and worked out.”
As Wilson was running full speed into left, he kept one eye on the ball and another on hard-charging left fielder Garrett Jones (6-feet-4, 245 pounds). “Not crashing into Jones was a priority,” Wilson said.
And if Wilson had collided with Jones? “We wouldn’t be talking right now,” Wilson said with a laugh. “I’d be in a hospital bed.”
• But, Wilson also had something to regret fouling out with one out and a runner on third base in the eighth. Wilson’s foul pop came after he failed to get down a suicide squeeze bunt on a pitch that came up toward his head.
“I didn’t come through and that ended up being a huge run,” Wilson said. “Bad at-bat, all the way around. No matter what the score is, you’ve got to capitalize on your opportunities.”
• Even though closer Matt Capps clearly was struggling he gave up five runs in one-third of an inning and took the loss no one else warmed up in the bullpen during the ninth inning.
• In the first inning last night, Garrett Jones launched a homer 393 feet to right field. The ball landed in the lower deck, but beyond the last row of seats.
Jones has homered in back-to-back games, and has hit safely in seven games in a row. Seven of his 12 hits since being called up from Triple-A have gone for extra bases.
After Ryan Doumit doubled, Delwyn Young yanked a fastball over the left field wall. It was the first time the Pirates had hit a pair of first-inning homers since Sept. 17, 2005, when Jason Bay and Freddy Sanchez went deep against Cincinnati.
• Doumit’s double was his first hit since April 18, before he went on the disabled list with a fractured scaphoid bone in his wrist.
• There was a bomb scare last night at Citizens Bank Park when an unattended package was found near the left field gate. The ballpark was not evacuated and the item was not dangerous. Vice president Joe Biden attended last night’s game.
• Lineups for this afternoon’s game:
PIRATES 1.Andrew McCutchen cf, 2. Freddy Sanchez 2b, 3. Garrett Jones lf, 4. Ryan Doumit c, 5. Delwyn Young rf, 6. Adam LaRoche 1b, 7. Andy LaRoche 3b, 8. Jack Wilson ss, 9. Virgil Vasquez (1-2, 4.50) rhp
PHILLIES 1. Jimmy Rollins ss, 2. Shane Victorino cf, 3. Chase Utley 2b, 4. Ryan Howard 1b, 5. Raul Ibanez lf, 6. Jayson Werth rf, 6. Pedro Feliz 3b, 8. Carlos Ruiz c, 9. J.A. Happ (5-0, 3.04) lhp