Final Score: Rays 4, Phillies 3
If the Philadelphia Phillies playoff hopes were in critical condition after Friday night’s loss in Tampa Bay, they’re on life support after a loss Saturday evening.
Though the Phillies had a chance in the seventh inning, they ultimately didn’t make the best of opportunities Saturday, clinching the seventh losing season in the last nine years. If the San Francisco Giants defeat the San Diego Padres this evening, the Phillies will officially be eliminated from playoff contention.
- The Phillies got on the board first, plating a run in the top of the first inning. With two outs in the top of the first inning, Jean Segura lined a ball sharply at Rays third baseman Yoshitomo Tsutsugo, who made a poor throw to first base. Even if it had been a strong throw, Segura probably wouldn’t have beaten it. However, Rays first baseman Michael Brosseau let the throw get by him, allowing Andrew McCutchen to score all the way from second.
- McCutchen led off the third inning by legging out a triple, though he was forced to go back to second base when umpires decided that the ball had been lodged under the center field wall at Tropicana Field. With two outs, J.T. Realmuto singled into center field, but Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier, a three-time Gold Glove Award winner, threw McCutchen out at the plate:
- Tsutsugo tied the game in the bottom of the fourth inning with an RBI single that plated Brandon Lowe.
- The tie was short-lived, as McCutchen led off the top of the fifth inning with a 367-foot solo shot over the left-field wall:
- Unfortunately for the Phillies, the Rays nickle-and-dimed the Phillies for three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. With two outs, Mike Zunino, Brandon Lowe and Willy Adames all singled in runs, allowing the Rays to take a 4-2 lead.
- The Phillies cut into the Rays lead in the top of the seventh inning. After McCutchen and Alec Bohm singled to open the inning, Bryce Harper drove McCutchen in with a single of his own.
- The Phillies failed to truly take advantage of circumstances in the seventh, though. After Harper’s RBI single, J.T. Realmuto grounded into a double play. With Bohm on third base, Jean Segura struck out to end the inning. That inning proved to be the story of the game, as the Phillies went down in order in both the eighth and ninth innings.
Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Performance
- The Rays planned to use John Curtiss as the opener Saturday, but Kevin Cash and company probably hoped that they would get more out of him than they did. Curtiss lasted 2/3 of an inning, giving up three hits and one run.
- In his final start of the 2020 regular season, Zack Wheeler went seven plus innings, allowing seven hits and four runs. Truth be told, the Phillies probably needed a complete game from Wheeler tonight. That probably wasn’t a realistic goal against arguably the best team in the American League, and gives you an idea of just how ineffective the bullpen has been in 2020.
Ticket IQ Next Game
- Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020 vs. Tampa Bay Rays at 3:10 p.m. ET
- NBC Sports Philadelphia
- 1210 WPHT
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