The Phillies were trying to avoid its six straight loss an eight game road trip Sunday afternoon in Colorado. Aaron Nola is the right guy to have on the mound to stop such a streak. He would allow a first inning run after a Nolan Arenado RBI single, but was in cruise control until the seventh inning, when things got a bit hairy.
After Nola recorded the first two outs in the seventh, the right-hander would issue a walk to pinch-hitter Raimel Tapia. Nola then had to navigate through .332 hitting Charlie Blackmon. After a first pitch strike, Tapia took off for second. Cameron Rupp‘s throw was late, but Nola had Blackmon in an 0-2 hole… so we thought.
— Joe Lyons (@JoeLyonsII) August 6, 2017
If you look closely, the second pitch curveball was basically right down the middle, but the home plate umpire ruled it a ball. Nola would get behind 3-1 as a result, and Blackmon would lace his third double of the game to left center, giving the Rockies a 2-1 lead. That call certainly changed the complexion of the at-bat, and Blackmon was all over his second life. However, Nola still pitched ace-like, allowing the two runs over seven innings while striking out nine.
The Phillies would threaten in the eighth inning. Rupp led off the inning with a single, and Andres Blanco followed with a double. After the ball got passed a diving Gerardo Parra in left, third base coach Juan Samuel gives Rupp the green light. He was thrown out by a mile, however, the replay showed that Rupp avoided Ryan Hanigan‘s tag, but the call was upheld. It was a gut-punch.
But, the Phils wouldn’t go down in the ninth. Odubel Herrera legged out a double to begin the inning, followed by a Maikel Franco single. With runners at first and third, newly acquired Hyun Soo Kim grounded into a fielder’s choice when Herrera was thrown out home. Rupp would then deliver his third hit of the game with a go-ahead two-run double into the left field alley off Rockies’ closer Greg Holland.
Hector Neris shut the door in the ninth.
The Phillies will continue their road trip in Atlanta on Tuesday. They get to enjoy an off day tomorrow after today’s thrilling finish.