Game 2: Mus-Groove is in the Heart
Let’s get through this one quickly. Zach Eflin didn’t right the ship and only lasted 4 innings, giving up 3 runs.
Joe Musgrove, on the other hand, got his groove back. He didn’t allow an earned run over 6 innings pitched. Musgrove also struck out a grand total of 8 Phillies. Half of them were thanks to JT Realmuto wearing the golden sombrero.
The Phillies mustered only one run on an RBI groundout by Adam Haseley.
Nick Pivetta pitched 2 innings in relief. He allowed one earned run after not being able to field a dribbler and get the out at 3rd. Mike Morin would make his debut. He, too, would give up a single run.
Pirates win 5-1.
Game 3: Smyles in the 11th Hour
The Phillies announced the signing of their starting pitcher for the day about 2 hours before game time. Drew Smyly came into the game with an 8+ ERA with the Rangers and a close to 5 ERA with the Brewers in AAA.
Smyly quickly forced fans to change their opinion of him. He allowed a run in the first inning and that was it. Even that first run could’ve been prevented with better 3rd base defense as the leadoff double down the line looked to be playable by Brad Miller.
Cesar Hernandez would answer the call to action in the 4th inning. He drove an offspeed pitch through the hole on the right side to score Harper.
The score would stay 1-1 for a while.
In the meantime, Smyly pitched 6 strong innings with 8 strikeouts. At the end of the game, he would draw comparisons to Cliff Lee by manager Gabe Kapler.
Warranted or not, the Phillies bullpen also deserved praise. I know. I feel weird writing that. Juan Nicasio, Adam Morgan, Hector Neris, and Ranger Suarez combined for 5 scoreless IP, allowing all of 2 hits, 2 walks, and Neris nailed 2 batters with HBPs. I swear, it’s almost like Neris is trying to prove he’s that wild so he would win his upcoming appeal.
Anyway, the Phillies and Pirates would head t extra innings. In the 11th, Rhys Hoskins would come to the plate. BOOM! SMELL YA LATER BUCCOS! WALK-oh wait, they’re in Pittsburgh.
Ranger Suarez would have to shut the door…EXCEPT I already told you he did! Phillies win 2-1 and take the series!
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Alec Kostival graduated from La Salle University with a degree in communication with a focus in mass media and journalism. He covered high school sports for the Chestnut Hill Local. He has interned with the Reading Fightin Phils and the Philadelphia Eagles.