The Phillies opened up a three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds Friday night, and they certainly started things out on the right foot by defeating the Reds, 4–2. After snapping a five-game losing streak Tuesday in San Diego, the Phillies have now won three consecutive games to improve their record to 36-27.
Zach Eflin took the mound for the Phillies Friday evening, making his first start since May 26 against the Milwaukee Brewers. Meanwhile, Tyler Mahle had the ball for the Reds.
The Reds were able to get on the board first thanks to a Joey Votto home run. Votto, the 2010 National League MVP, has had a slow start to the 2019 season. Coming into the game, he had been hitting just .246 with four home runs. His fifth home run of the season gave the Reds a 1-0 lead:
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 7, 2019
The Phillies offense got off to a slow start. Through the first four innings, Philadelphia collected only one hit. That all changed in the bottom of the fifth, when J.T. Realmuto led the half-inning off with a single. Jay Bruce, who was a Red from 2008 to 2016, came up to bat and showed his former team he still has pop by slamming a two-run home-run. It was Bruce’s 18th home run of the season, and his fourth since being acquired by the Phillies. That put the Phillies up 2-1:
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) June 8, 2019
Following Bruce’s home run, Scott Kingery collected a single. He was then able to advance to third on ground outs by Maikel Franco and Eflin, and ultimately scored on a throwing error by Cincinnati catcher Trevor Barnhart. That gave the Phillies a two-run lead over the Reds.
In the top of the sixth, Eflin ran into some trouble. Derek Dietrich was able to reach first on an error by Franco. Jesse Winkler was then walked, giving the Reds men on first and second. Cincinnati was then able to capitalize when Jose Iglesias singled up the middle, scoring Dietrich and cutting the Phillies lead to 3-2. However, that was all the offense the Reds could muster.
The Phillies were able to tack on an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth. With Cesar Hernandez and Bryce Harper on second and first respectively, Jean Segura hit a ground ball to second base. The Reds were able to get the force-out at second, but Jose Peraza committed an error on the throw to first, which allowed Hernandez to score and gave the Phillies a 4-2 lead, which would end up being the final score of the game.
Hector Neris notched his 13th save of the year in the ninth inning.
- Tyler Mahle had a solid, if unspectacular, outing for the Reds. In five innings, he gave up four hits, three runs (two earned) and had just two strikeouts. He threw 73 pitches.
- Coming back from the injured list, Zach Eflin shined. In six innings, Eflin gave up just two runs (one earned), four hits, four walks and struck out six. He threw 95 pitches, 61 of which went for strikes.
- When the Phillies picked up Jay Bruce from the Mariners, no one could have imagined he would open up his tenure in Philadelphia like this. Bruce went one for three tonight, hitting a two-run home-run that gave the Phillies a 2-1 lead and shifted the momentum. It was Bruce’s 18th home run of the season, and his fourth home run in the last three games.
- Saturday, June 7th
- 7:05 p.m. ET
- TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
- Radio: SportsRadio 94 WIP, WTTM 1680 (Spanish)
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