RING IT: Phillies actually played great baseball, beat the Padres 4-2
Game two against the San Diego Padres started off with a rain delay. The Phillies then fell behind 2-0 on a Manny Machado two-run home run to centerfield in the top of the first inning. From there, everyone in the city of Philadelphia had to be thinking that this was going to be the same type of game we have witnessed all season from the Phillies. Instead, it was probably the best game the Phillies have played this year. The Phillies beat the Padres for the second time in as many days, winning 4-2 with the chance to sweep one of the best teams in the MLB tomorrow.
The most important inning came immediately after falling behind in the first. Bryce Harper and Rhys Hoskins both smashed solo home runs in the second inning to tie the game at two. We have all waited a very long time for the Phillies to have a healthy lineup, and now in a short sample size, we are finally getting a glimpse at the potential this offense has to score runs.
Harper and Hoskins went a combined 3-for-6 with four RBI, a double, and two home runs. Jean Segura, JT Realmuto, Andrew McCutchen, Didi Gregorius, and Alec Bohm all had a hit a piece. The Phillies tagged a very good pitcher in Yu Darvish for six hits and four earned runs over the first six innings of the ball game.
On the mound for the Phillies, Zach Eflin rebounded beautifully after a rough first inning. He threw six innings, allowing three hits and two earned runs. In relief, the bullpen did their job to perfection. Bailey Falter continues to impress and threw a scoreless seventh inning, allowing just a hit while striking out a batter. Archie Bradley pitched a scoreless eighth inning and got some help from the defense (seriously) when Didi Gregorius made a diving catch to save a hit up the center.
The Phillies carried a 4-2 lead into the ninth inning. In came Ranger Suarez, who blew a save in game one against the Padres. He was facing the heart of the Padres lineup in Tatis, Cronenworth, and Machado and made it look effortless. Suarez pitched a hitless ninth inning while striking out Cronenworth to earn his first save in Major League Baseball. He threw 13 pitches total, nine of which were strikes.
On the season, Ranger Suarez is 4-2 with a 0.85 ERA in 19 appearances. For a team that has blown 22 saves in 80 games this year, the Phillies desperately needed someone to come in and show that they are ready to shutdown a game when needed. Suarez did just that.
After the game, Girardi, Eflin, and Bryce Harper praised Ranger Suarez. When the media asked Ranger how he felt about the possibility of being the new closer for the Phillies, he had this to say:
“I would be down for that role. But ultimately for me, it’s helping the team win in any situation. It doesn’t really matter what inning it is.”
After an extremely tough week for the Phillies’ bullpen. That’s really all I need to hear.
Read More: Reasons to be Optimistic about the Phillies >>
Ring It. Break out the brooms. Let’s sweep the Padres and then go to Chicago and beat the crap out of a bad Cubs team. The Phillies aren’t dead yet and are now playing very good baseball. I know it’s a small sample size and this team is anything but reliable, however it’s all we have right now. So let’s keep it moving.
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