We mentioned it on this week’s podcast but be sure to stay tuned for the Philly Speical edition of the Bullpen Cart. Matty D and I will be dedicating a full episode to Phillies talk and their incredible start through the first quarter of the 2018 season. If you have any questions or topics you want us to talk about, shoot us a DM or leave a comment. We’ll be recording it on Thursday night so you have plenty of time to get your questions in!
The Philadelphia Phillies and Baltimore Orioles were able to get in one of their two scheduled games this week as the Phils won 4-1 Wednesday afternoon. With the win, the Phillies move to 24-16 and move eight games above .500 since the final day of the 2011 regular season.
Another solid start from Nick Pivetta carried the Phillies as Nick struck out 11 Baltimore batters over seven innings while only allowing one run, a 1st inning home run from Adam Jones.
After five innings of two-hit ball, the Phillies bats came alive to provide Pivetta with a lead. Cesar Hernandez led things off with a home run and the Phillies would plate two more to build a 3-1 lead. Rhys Hoskins would pick up his 26th RBI of the season in the top of the 8th to extend the lead 4-1 as Pivetta left the game.
The Phillies’ bullpen even showed very strong signs of life. After reliever Tommy Hunter allowed Baltimore to put runners on second and third, Luis Garcia walked the first batter he faced to load up the bases.
Garcia, however, would prove to stay perfect on the year when he has inherited runners getting Adam Jones to fly out to center and forcing Manny Machado to ground out to short to finish the 8th inning.
It would be the bottom of the 9th inning that will be the lasting memory of this contest. Edubray Ramos came into the game to close the door and quickly sat down the first two batters he saw. Ramos’ slider was looking absolutely nasty but Gabe Kapler had a matchup play in mind with one out to go and a three-run lead–Hector Neris.
Neris had been struggling all season but Kapler wanted to utilize his splitter to sit down Chris Davis for the final out. Neris threw five pitches (four splitters) and the final splitter forced Davis to groundout to finish off the game. When asked about the decision afterward, Kapler said part of it was to build Hector’s confidence. While that’s all good and fun, it’s baffling to see why pulling Ramos was even an option when his stuff is looking so good. I get that if Ramos leaves that slider a bit too much over the plate that the left-handed Davis could CRUSH the ball but you need to give him the chance, especially when you’ve built the three-run lead.
Without splitting too many hairs here, the Phillies grinded out another series win, even if it ends up being a one-game series. The make-up game for Tuesday’s washout will be played on July 12th which now slates the Phillies to play 11 road games in 10 days between July 6th and 15th–yikes. As for the current road trip, the Phils will escape the week-long East Coast rainstorms to St Louis for a four-game set with the Cardinals.
Thanks for checking out my recap of Wednesday’s game! I’m going to try to get more of these out since my Phillies coverage outside of the podcast has been lacking. As a reminder, stay tuned for the Philly Special edition of the Bullpen Cart. If you have any questions or topics you want us to talk about, shoot us a DM or leave a comment. We’ll be recording it on Thursday night so you have plenty of time to get your questions in!Follow @geordo9