Series Recap: Phillies Sweep Nationals in Finale, 11-5

Phillies Aaron nola
Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Aaron Nola throws during the fourth inning of the team’s baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Saturday, March 30, 2024, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Derik Hamilton)

Another successful series for the Philadelphia Phillies.

After taking the first two games in this home series with the Washington Nationals, the Phillies headed into Sunday’s action looking for a series sweep. They accomplished that goal, bringing home an 11-5 victory.

The Phillies have not lost a series since early April, putting them now at 34-14 on the season. The team spoke highly about needing to get off to a fast start in 2024. They have put themselves in that position and backed up their words.

But before we can discuss the remainder of the season, let’s talk about Sunday’s action.

Nola Day

Aaron Nola would take the mound for the Phillies on Sunday afternoon against the Washington Nationals. It was his first start since his complete game shutout against the Mets in New York Tuesday afternoon. Before this afternoon’s game, Nola has started 30 games versus Washington. In those games, he’s accumulated an 8-8 record with a 3.75 earned run average.

Aaron would work quickly in the first, retiring Washington 1-2-3 in just 7 pitches. To start the second inning, Nola would strike out Luis Garcia, earning his first on the afternoon. A couple of batters later, he would pick off Nick Senzel to end the frame.

The Phillies’ veteran faced the minimum through 3 innings but made one mistake in the fourth. After retiring the leadoff hitter CJ Abrams, Ildemaro Vargas would reach on a throwing error by Bryce Harper. The next batter was Eddie Rosario, who snuck an 0-2 pitch into the seats in right field. This would tie the game at two, and swing some momentum back for Washington.

Just Keep Hitting

Facing Trevor Williams, the Phillies’ bats were in for a challenge. Heading into Sunday’s game, Trevor held a 1.94 earned run average. He hadn’t allowed more than 3 runs at any start of the season.

The Phillies would go down in order in the first inning, but then start things off in the second. Kody Clemens reached with a one-out double and would come across on a Nick Castellanos single.

The Phillies had several hits early in the game that dropped in front of the Nationals’ outfielders. A no-doubles-type defense seemed to allow the club to sneak in a few extra hits, leading to runs.

In the bottom of the third, Bryson Stott would reach base with a single. That knock made it 18 consecutive games where he has reached safely. Bryce Harper would then step to the plate. Harper singled to right, allowing Stott to reach third.

Alec Bohm continues to produce with runners in scoring position, as he would drive in Stott with a sac fly to right field. This gave the Phillies a 2-0 lead after three but as mentioned, the Nationals would fight back in the fourth.

Alec Bohm Phillies
Philadelphia Phillies’ Alec Bohm reacts after hitting a double during the fifth inning in Game 1 of a National League wild card baseball playoff series against the St. Louis Cardinals, Friday, Oct. 7, 2022, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Scott Kane)

Playing from Behind

In the top of the 5th inning, Aaron Nola would make another mistake. He left a ball out over the plate and it did not come back. Jessie Winker would place it in the right field seats and the Nationals would hold a 3-2 lead. Nola would work through the rest of the inning but the Phillies would have to again play from behind.

In the bottom of the inning, the Phillies bats would come back alive. A couple walks by Schwarber and Stott would be followed by a Harper single. Alec Bohm would then drive in Schwarber with a sac fly.

With runners at the corners, Kody Clemens would have a chance to come through again. He would hit his second double of the day, driving in two runs, to give the Phillies a 5-3 lead in the fifth. Clemens would score on a Nick Castellanos single for the second time in the game, giving the Phillies a 6-3 lead.

In the bottom of the 6th inning, the Phillies threatened once more. A single by Johan Rojas and a walk to Kyle Schwarber gave Bryson Stott a chance to add more runs. He would hit a liner off the pitch but moved the runners into scoring position. Bryce Harper would then deliver, driving in both runs with a double to right-center field. This gave the Phillies an 8-3 lead.

Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Aaron Nola throws against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning in Game 2 of the baseball NL Championship Series in Philadelphia, Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2023. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Phillies Complete the Sweep

Aaron Nola would return to work in the 7th inning. He would allow a walk in the top half of the frame but would shut down the bottom of the Nationals’ lineup. For the afternoon, Nola finished with 7 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, and 2 HR. He threw 101 pitches and 64 were for strikes.

Seranthony Dominguez would get the 8th inning. He would allow a single to CJ Abrams and walked Ildemaro Vargas in his half of the 8th. A key strikeout and line out to third base gave Seranthony a clean inning of work.

Both Johan Rojas and Kyle Schwarber walked in the bottom of the 8th inning, but a nice defensive play by the centerfielder Jacob Young robbed Bryce Harper of another RBI double. Young jumped up against the wall to bring down the second out.

The next batter was Alec Bohm. Bohm cranked his 5th home run of the season into left field, bringing the lead to 11-3.

Spencer Turnbull would take the 9th inning for the Phillies. Turnbull is still adjusting to his new role with the club after primarily working as a starting pitcher. Three straight hits to start the 9th would give the Nats a run back, making it 11-4. Later an RBI double by Jacob Young would make it 11-5.

With runners at second and third, Spencer would strike out CJ Abrams, who has been red-hot this season and in this series. He would retire Vargas to win the ballgame.

The Phillies are off on Monday and will be back in action Tuesday at home against the 2023 World Series champion Texas Rangers.

Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Derik Hamilton)