Final Score: Rays 5, Phillies 0
Ultimately, a win would have earned the Philadelphia Phillies a playoff spot. But the team lost to the Tampa Bay Rays in a game in which the lineup struggled greatly.
Aaron Nola pitched poorly in this game and was lifted early, and the Phillies offense failed to score. They finish having lost seven of their final eight games. If they won just one of those games, they would have earned eighth and final playoff seed in the National League based on the results of the San Francisco Giants and Milwaukee Brewers games on Sunday.
The Phillies went 28-32 in a disappointing 2020, and it remains to be seen what moves will follow in a crucial upcoming offseason.
- Tampa Bay scored first in the bottom of the second. After Nate Lowe and Hunter Renfroe both singled in the inning, pinch hitter Kevan Smith singled to score the first run of the game.
- The Rays added to their lead in the third inning. Randy Arozarena started things off with a two-out walk and came around to score after back-to-back singles by Lowe and Joey Wendle. Renfroe followed with a single of his own to score Lowe and give the Rays a 3-0 lead.
- The Phillies threatened in the top of the fourth, but ultimately failed to score. They loaded the bases after Bryce Harper singled, J.T. Realmuto reached on an error and Didi Gregorius singled but Phil Gosselin grounded out to end the inning.
- The Rays added two more in the bottom of the sixth against Hector Neris. After Smith led off the inning with a double, Mike Brosseau hit a triple that bounced over the head of Gosselin in right field and scored Smith. Brosseau came in to score on a wild pitch to the next batter, and suddenly the Rays had a 5-0 lead.
- Zach Eflin entered in relief to finish the game, but it ultimately did not matter as the Phillies offense struggled to get anything going. Alec Bohm hit a double in the eighth, the Phillies lone extra-base hit of the day, but did not come around to score.
Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Performance
Aaron Nola: 3 2/3 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, 0 HR, 93 pitches.
It was a tough start for Nola in a must-win game for the Phillies. He just struggled to put Rays hitters away, which led to some two-strike singles and full-counts as his pitch count skyrocketing early. He finishes the season with a 3.28 ERA and the Phillies losing his final three starts of 2020.
Josh Fleming: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 HR, 90 pitches.
Fleming pitched an impressive game for the Rays, allowing just four singles and no runs. The Phillies lineup was shut out for just the second time all season.
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