Rhys Hoskins, Andrew McCutchen save the season, power Phillies past Nationals 6-5
The first five innings of last night’s Phillies game were absolutely brutal. Spencer Howard was on the mound and as usual, ran into some trouble in the fourth inning. Howard pitched 3.2 innings, allowing six hits four earned runs, and zero walks while striking out two. In the fourth, it appeared that Howard was dealing with a blister on one of his fingers and exited the game. For Spencer Howard, it’s always something but one thing remains constant: his inability to get out of the fourth inning.
Nationals pitcher Joe Ross blanked the Phillies through the first five innings of the game, allowing only three hits, zero earned runs, and two walks while striking out four. The game was hard to watch through five innings. I found myself checking out social media to keep track of the Dollar Dog Night hot dog counter rather than watching the game. I missed the final count, but there were over 30,000 hot dogs purchased last night at Citizens Bank Park. Truly disgusting.
For the Phillies, everything changed in the sixth inning. In what will certainly be looked over after what happened in the bottom of the ninth, Rhys Hoskins injected some life into the Phillies and ultimately saved their season, just a few days before the trade deadline. With zero outs and two men on base, Rhys Hoskins smoked an opposite field home run to make it a one run ball game at 4-3. The “yeah baby” on Kruk was just icing on the cake.
It’s no secret that I’m a huge Rhys Hoskins. I own a total of three professional sports jerseys. Randy Moss. Allen Iverson. Rhys Hoskins. Honestly, the only other jersey worth buying would be Ben Simmons but I refuse to do so until he shoots the basketball. Anyways, Rhys Hoskins now has 22 home runs and 62 RBI this season. Yes, his batting average isn’t great (.232) but for the Phillies leading run producer, he’s definitely providing a spark during a pivotal time of the season.
The Phillies bullpen was fantastic last night. Kintzler got Spencer Howard out of a jam to kick things off. From there, Connor Brogdon and Jose Alvarado both pitched scoreless innings. Hector Neris pitched two scoreless innings and the Phillies were down one run heading into the ninth inning. In the top of the ninth, Archie Bradley was on the mound and the Phillies looked like the Phillies we all hate. After a few botched infield grounders, the Nationals were able to tack on another run to make the game 5-3 heading into the bottom of the ninth.
The Phillies best player this season, Jean Segura, led things off with a base hit. JT Realmuto struck out. Bryce Harper walked. That brought Andrew McCutchen to the plate. The video will explain the rest.
Andrew McCutchen hit a walk-off three-run home run and just like that, the Phillies won the game 6-5. They are now a game above .500 at 50-49 and 3.5 games behind the NL East leading New York Mets. Last night was a must-win after splitting a four game series against the Braves over the weekend.
Matt Moore will be on the mound for the Phillies today against the Nationals. The Phillies DESPERATELY need a good outing from Moore given the fact that their bullpen pitched a lot last night.
Another fun thing that happened last night was this:
Yes, I’m aware that it’s actually pretty common that MLB players use other players’ bats but hell, that’s quite the coincidence as the MLB Trade Deadline approaches.
Here’s a bonus video of one of The Liberty Line’s close friends Amanda Dotter going nuts after the Cutch walk-off. You absolutely love to see it.
Personal Note: I’m heading to Florida for the next 8 days. In relief, our guy Luke will be taking over Phillies duties. Let’s hope he performs better than the Phillies bullpen has this season.
Mandatory Credit: The Philadelphia Phillies