Final Score: Phillies 6, Nationals 5
A sweep it is.
In extra-innings, Alec Bohm smacked a game-winning sacrifice fly to secure a fourth consecutive victory over the Washington Nationals.
Alec Bohm went after the first pitch from Sean Doolittle and hit a fly ball to center field. J.T. Realmuto tagged up and was safe by a mile.
The team, however, was fueled by gutsy late-inning performances from their bullpen. Tommy Hunter, JoJo Romero, Héctor Neris and Blake Parker combined to pitch 3 1/3 shutout innings after David Phelps surrendered the go-ahead home run.
Prior to the game, the Phillies officially retired Dick Allen’s No. 15 in a pregame ceremony that included speeches from managing partner John Middleton and legendary third baseman Mike Schmidt.
- The Phillies’ middle-of-the-order duo came through with two outs in the first inning. Bryce Harper singled. Realmuto then followed up with a double off the wall in right field against Aníbal Sánchez. They were driven in after Gregorius reached on a fielding error from Brock Holt, who was shifted behind second base. Both runs were unearned.
- Trea Turner broke the Nationals’ scoreless streak with his first career inside-the-park home run to tie the game up at 2-2 in the third inning. Roman Quinn played the ball a bit too aggressively in center field and allowed his second inside-the-park home run of the season.
- The hits just keep on coming for Rhys Hoskins. He hit his seventh home run of the season to regain the lead for the Phillies.
- Another unearned run scored in the bottom of the third. Gregorius doubled and drove in Harper, who reached on a fielding error from Sánchez. Harper bunted toward first and Sánchez bobbled it. It was another weird instance in which Harper took the bat out of his hands and it ended up working out well for the Phillies.
- With the bases loaded, both Harper and Realmuto struck out to end the fourth. It was their best opportunity to break the game open and they failed. It backfired in the next half-inning.
- The Nationals scored two runs in the fifth. The first was an RBI ground out from Turner. For some reason, the Phillies decided to pitch to Juan Soto with two bases open and it backfired as he singled to center field on a changeup well below the strike zone.
- Luis García began the seventh with what appeared to be a routine base hit to right field. Harper caught García lurking past the first-base bag and he threw him out.
- In his first at-bat of the game, Michael A. Taylor homered on a 3-2 fastball down the middle of the plate from Phelps. Perhaps it would have been better if the appeal to first on the fifth pitch of the at-bat didn’t go the Phillies’ way.
- In another interesting decision from Joe Girardi, Andrew McCutchen came in to pinch-hit for Knapp. He drove in the tying run with an RBI fielder’s choice. The decision came with a trade-off: the Phillies had to surrender their designated hitter as Realmuto had to move from DH to catcher.
- With an opportunity to win the game with just one run, Hoskins, Harper and Realmuto went down 1-2-3 against Daniel Hudson in the ninth.
- Bohm hit a fly ball that wasn’t too deep to the centerfielder Robles. Realmuto, who was the default runner placed on second base, tagged up and was easily safe. It’s Bohm’s first career walk-off.
Shibe Vintage Sports Starting Pitching Performance
Aníbal Sánchez: 3 1/3 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 74 pitches
Sánchez struggled in his last outing and he struggled again on Thursday afternoon. Then again, the defense behind him didn’t do him any favors.
Zach Eflin: 6 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 82 pitches
The Nationals stacked their lineup with left-handed batters as lefties have a 1.181 OPS against Eflin this season. The plan didn’t work out as lefties (including the switch-hitting Asdrúbal Cabrera) combined to go 4-for-19 with one RBI off Eflin. Most of the damage came off the bat of Turner. Prior to the series, Turner was one of the hottest hitters in baseball and it seems as though he’s picked it back up.
Phillies Nuggets Player of the Game: Blake Parker
With Taylor on second and nobody out, Parker was tasked with not allowing any Washington runners to score with Turner and Soto due up in the tenth. He ended up striking out Turner, intentionally walking Soto and striking out Cabrera with a perfect pitch. Parker has been one of the best relievers out of the ‘pen for the Phillies. He still has a 0.00 ERA on the season.
“I don’t think you can ask him to do any more than he’s done,” Girardi said after the game.
Quote of the Game
Much has been made about Harper saying the Phillies need to win nine out of 10. Well, they did just that and Girardi made a witty comment about that to open up his media availability.
“I heard someone say Bryce is a prophet. I’m going to go to him and see what I should do next.”
Ticket IQ Next Game
- Friday, September 3 vs. the New York Mets at 7:10 pm
- Citi Field
- NBC Sports Philadelphia
- Sportsradio 94 WIP
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