The Phillies donned their powdered blue jerseys as they took to the field for “Throwback Thursday” against the Miami Marlins. While the uniforms were pretty, the end results weren’t. The Phillies (13-12) lost in extra innings by a 3-1 score to Miami (8-17) in the opener of a four-game series between the division rivals.
The Phillies started off the game looking like they were on the verge of an offensive breakout. Miami starter Caleb Smith, who had shut the Phillies down on one hit earlier in the month, threw 30+ pitches in the 1st inning. That included a battle with J.T. Realmuto that lasted 16 pitches. Smith would win that one with a strikeout.
However, the Phillies were able to get on the board first thanks to a Sean Rodriguez home run, his first of the season.
That's a way to make an impression!
In his first at-bat as a Phillie at CBP, Sean Rodriguez goes yard.
1-0, Phils pic.twitter.com/c8R15qlZwl
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) April 25, 2019
Meanwhile, Aaron Nola got off to a bit of a shaky start as well. The right-hander allowed base runners in each of the first four innings. The Marlins finally broke through in the top of the third when Martin Prado (.297 in 144 games against the Phillies) delivered an RBI single to center field to score Lewis Brinson. That tied the game at one apiece.
The Phillies finally put their first runner in scoring position when Andrew McCutchen drilled a double off the left field wall in the bottom of the sixth. He then was able to advance to third on a Realmuto fly ball. However, consecutive fly outs by Bryce Harper and Rhys Hoskins ended the scoring opportunity.
Nola once again got into some trouble in the top of the 7th, leaving the game with runners on the corners and two outs. Adam Morgan was able to come in and end the inning, ensuring Nola left the game with just the single run allowed.
Things got dicey for the Phillies in the top of the ninth when, with Miquel Rojas on second, Isaac Galloway singled to left field. Rojas was waved around third, but Williams, who had remained in the game after his pinch at-bat and was inserted to left field with McCutchen flipping over to center, had other ideas. Williams gunned a beautiful throw to home plate, Realmuto delivered a perfect tag, and Rojas was the out.
Nicky Dubs says NO! pic.twitter.com/vKqG52CPmi
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) April 26, 2019
The crowd was pumped for the bottom of the 9th, but Tayron Guerrero dominated Harper, Hoskins and Franco, sending the game to extra-innings.
The Phillies’ luck would run out in the top of the 10th. Phillies manager Gabe Kapler left Hector Neris in for a second inning of relief and the righty nearly repaid his skipper’s confidence, retiring the first two Marlins batters. But then Neil Walker laced a double to left field, putting the go-ahead run in scoring position.
Starlin Castro then delivered the key hit of the night, sending a ball out on a line to left field for a two-run homer that gave the Marlins their first lead of the game. That 3-1 score would end up being the final as Sergio Romo retired the Phillies in order in the bottom of the 10th inning for his fourth Save of the year.
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) April 26, 2019
Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Matchup
- Caleb Smith continued his strong start to the year, giving up just one run and three hits in six innings, striking out eight and walking one. Smith threw 102 pitches and lowered his ERA to the 2.17 mark.
- Aaron Nola showed signs of his old self against the Marlins. After escaping some jams early on, Nola settled in. He even showed off his defense, making a great off-balanced throw to second base during a bunt attempt to get the out. He pitched 6.2 innings, giving up one run and seven hits while striking out four and walking one. The outing lowered his ERA to the 5.73 mark.
Phillies Nuggets Player of the Game: Starlin Castro
- While both pitchers had fantastic outings, it was Castro who broke the low-scoring game open with his two-run home run in the top of the tenth. Those would be the game-winning runs. On the day, Castro was two for four with two RBIs, one run and one walk.
- Friday, April 25th at Citizens Bank Park
- 7:05 p.m. ET
- TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
- Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP, WTTM 1680 (Spanish)