It took extra innings to do it, but the Phillies have fulfilled Bryce Harper’s prophecy of securing their ninth win of the team’s previous 10 contests. Harper made the proclamation following club’s fifth loss in a row at the time. The team had dropped to 9-14, prompting Harper to say that the team needed to save their season by doing something dramatic, such as “win nine of 10 games.”
Well, Harper can clearly see the future, as the team has done exactly what he said they needed to do.
The win didn’t come easy, however, and the Phillies had to reclaim the lead more than once. After taking an early 2-0 edge, an over-aggressive play from Roman Quinn led to a two-run, inside the park home run off the bat of Trea Turner. The Phils then tagged on two more runs in the bottom of the third, with a towering Rhys Hoskins home run providing the highlight of the inning.
Zach Eflin allowed two more runs following a string of hits in the fifth, again tying the ball-game up. The righty would exit after one more scoreless frame in the sixth, ultimately allowing four runs through six innings.
Fast forward to the top of the seventh inning and the newly acquired David Phelps was on the mound. After retiring the first two batters he faced, the right-hander allowed a solo home run to Michael Taylor. This gave the Nationals a one run lead.
Keeping up with the theme of the game, the lead didn’t last long as the Phillies were able to score off a bases loaded fielder’s choice courtesy of Andrew McCutchen. Alec Bohm — who was on base after collecting his third hit of the day — had a very crafty (and legal) slide that may or may not have affected the play.
Hector Neris then retired the side in the ninth with a vintage outing. The split-finger pitch was working beautifully as Hector cruised through one of his most dominant appearances of 2020. It was more of the same for Blake Parker in the 10th, as the right-hander navigated some tough AB’s while keeping the Nats off the board. Parker would ultimately pick up the decision for the game, improving to 3-0 on the season. Parker has yet to allow an earned run through 9.2 innings of work.
Following a scoreless inning from Parker, the stage was set for the Phillies to win in walk off fashion. After Didi Gregorius successfully bunted the given base-runner (Realmuto) over to third, the Nats opted to walk both Jean Segura and Phil Gosselin in order to set up a force at the plate. In stepped Alec Bohm.
With the game and Harper’s prophecy on the line, Bohm flew out to shallow center but scored Realmuto in the process. The win marked #9 out of 10 attempts, just as Harper ordered.
For Bohm, the walk-off win only adds to what has been a stellar rookie campaign. The 24 year-old is currently slashing .317/.375/.867 at the plate to go along with two long balls and 10 runs batted in. With runners in scoring position, Alec Bohm has gone 9-for-17 thus far.
The walk-off win completed a sweep of the Nationals and improved the Phillies’ record to 18-15.