Final Score: Phillies 4, Dodgers 3
Bonkers is the best way to describe the ending of Sunday’s Phillies-Dodgers series finale.
With two outs, Jean Segura tied the game at two in the ninth with a base hit to score Nick Castellanos, who began the two-out rally with a double. Perhaps he felt a bit slighted by Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, who decided to walk Kyle Schwarber and put the go-ahead run on first.
Alec Bohm made the game-saving play with the bases loaded and two outs in the tenth. A murder’s row of Garrett Stubbs, Johan Camargo and Roman Quinn were due up in the Phillies half. No way they could actually win this, right?
Stubbs began the inning with an infield single. The ghost runner J.T. Realmuto initially read the play beautifully and advanced to third on a ball hit to the left side. Somehow, Realmuto fell for an impressive fake out from Turner, who tricked him into thinking the ball got away and moved off the base. Realmuto was tagged out and the Phillies lost their best chance to tie it up. No way they could actually win this, right.
Quinn, who came into the game batting just .143, notched a base hit to right field. Garrett Stubbs advanced from first to third on the play, a gutsy move considering that Mookie Betts had a chance to throw him out. The Phillies couldn’t afford to have two horrific mistakes on the basepaths in the same inning. Two runners were now in scoring position for Alec Bohm. A single could win the game.
With a 2-2 count, Bohm hit a routine ground ball to second. Game over, right?
No. This is Phillies baseball. Nothing is routine, even for the opposing team occasionally. Max Muncy booted the ball and before he could look up, the speedy Quinn was rounding third and heading to the plate.
Bohm, who has been widely criticized in the past for his deficiencies as a defender, made the big play and was rewarded in his next at-bat. A year removed from Achilles surgery, Quinn’s speed won the Phillies a game.
Despite how terrible the 2-4 homestand was for Philadelphia, that’s a beautiful story in itself.
While down a run, Girardi emptied the bench for a possible eighth-inning rally. Realmuto was hit-by-a-pitch while pinch hitting for Odúbel Herrera. Johan Camargo walked as he batted for Bryson Stott. With the tying and go-ahead run at the plate, Rhys Hoskins had a chance to put the Phillies in a position to end the miserable stretch on a high note. Instead, the Phillies first baseman grounded into a 5-4-3 double play. Slide or not, Hoskins didn’t have a chance to make it to first in time to tie the game.
The dugout trash can took a beating courtesy of Hoskins, who went 0-for-4 and was subbed out after his final at-bat.
Eflin at his best
Sunday was Zach Eflin’s finest outing of the year. He gave up two runs through seven innings while striking out a career-high 12 hitters. From the first through third inning, Eflin struck out six consecutive hitters and needed just 71 pitches to strike out 10 Dodger hitters.
The right hander generated 12 swing-and-misses on his curveball on Sunday.
“I think his confidence grew last year. Sometimes, pitchers will go out there and they may not have a pitch in the beginning, but he had [the curveball] right from the start and used it really well,” Girardi said.
Eflin is a free agent after this season and could earn himself a massive multi-year deal if he could consistently turn out the kind of performances that he gave the Phillies earlier today.
Garrett Stubbs — the perfect backup?
Everybody loves a good backup in Philadelphia sports. Bud Light isn’t quite ready to make a statue outside the stadium for Stubbs, but he is fitting in quite nicely in his new role. He picked up his first-career home run in the fifth inning and is off to a nice start at the plate. He’s hit in four straight and has a .400 batting average in 25 at-bats in 2022.
Shibe Vintage Sports Notes
- The Phillies clinched a 4-3 series victory over the Dodgers for the first time since 2018.
- Per the Phillies, Eflin is the first Phillies pitcher in nearly 10 years to strike out 12 Dodger batters in a game. Cliff Lee did so back on June 5, 2012.
Ticket IQ Next Game
- Monday, May 23 vs. Atlanta Braves at Truist Park
- 7:20 p.m. ET
- TV: NBC Sports Philadelphia
- Radio: Sportsradio 94 WIP
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