Still Alive but Barely Breathing: Phillies 6. Cubs 5.
Nothing is ever easy for the Philadelphia Phillies. Last night proved to be no different, after blow two saves before winning on a walk-off wild pitch to beat the Chicago Cubs 6-5. The Braves lost last night, so the Phillies were able to move within 3 games of the Atlanta Braves for first place in the National League East with 17 games remaining. The Phillies are 3 games behind the St. Louis Cardinals for the second and final NL Wild Card spot. Both the Padres and Reds are ahead of them looking to secure the final spot as well.
We all know what Bryce Harper has done for the Phillies over the last two months of the season. With no Rhys Hoskins in the lineup, the rest of the Phillies players have struggled at the plate. Last night, they finally got a much needed lift from JT Realmuto.
But first, the Phillies took an early lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Didi Gregorius grounded into a double play to score Bryce Harper. In the same inning, Freddy Galvis hit a two-run home run to give the Phillies a 3-0 lead heading into the fifth inning. The Cubs would answer right back and make it a 3-2 ball game on a Frank Schwindel home run.
In the bottom of the fifth, JT Realmuto hit a two out, single to score Ranger Suarez and give the Phillies a 4-2 lead. Of course, the Phillies would blow it in the top of the eighth inning. Robinson Chirinos hit a two-run home run to tie the ball game.
Luckily for the Phillies Realmuto wasn’t finished. In the top of the 8th inning, he hit a solo home run to give the Phillies a 5-4 lead. Matt Duffy would give the Phillies another blown save in the top of the ninth inning, as the Cubs tied it on his solo home run.
In the bottom of the ninth, a ball got past Robinson Chirinos and Andrew Knapp was able to walk home from third base to give the Phillies a much needed win.
The Hunt for Red October is still on. The Phillies will definitely need some more help over the next week. The Braves still have to head out west to face the Giants and Padres before returning to Atlanta at the end of the month to face the Phillies.
One thing is for certain. The Phillies need Realmuto to keep hitting and they need to find someone yet again, that will stop blowing saves in the bullpen. That won’t be an easy task.
Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY // NBC Sports Philadelphia