Like any good team, the Phillies ran through a bad team, sweeping the Nationals in four games with an 8-6 win.
This time the Phils needed a late comeback, and got it in the eighth. After putting the first two runners on, a well-executed Pedro Feliz bunt resulted in a complete defensive breakdown by Anderson Hernandez, letting in two runs and setting up a third. Eric Brunlett made that possible with a pinch-hit RBI double. The three-run inning handed the Phils a two-run lead, which they wouldn’t squander this time.
That’s because the bullpen was superb. Notching the win in his first career appearance was Sergio Escalona. The Reading lefty callup pitched a fine, scoreless seventh against right-handed hitters. WIth him was Jack Taschner (2.2 IP, H, 2 BB, K), Chad Durbin (2 IP, 2 H, ER, 2 K), Scott Eyre (1.1 IP, BB, 2 K) and Brad Lidge, who threw two pitches and got two outs for the easiest save he’s collected as a Phillie. And that was highly important.
The offense teed off against rookie Jordan Zimmermann early, as Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino drove in runs in the first for a 3-0 lead. But Chan Ho Park had a poor start, never getting out of the second while letting up five runs. The Phils battled back early, though, thanks to a Jimmy Rollins RBI single and Chase Utley RBI double.
With the sweep, the Phils are now at 20-16. At 7 p.m. Friday we were all fretting a .500 baseball team; 46 hours later we’re basking in a team four over .500.