By: Matthew Mack
The Phillies headed to San Diego to face the Padres for a three-game match-up this past weekend. The highlight of the series coming in were the clash of two MVP candidates of Fernando Tatis, Jr. and Bryce Harper
In the opening game, J.T. Realmuto and Harper got things going offensively for the Phillies in the third. Along with Realmuto’s RBI double, Harper slammed a two run bomb. In the bottom half, Manny Machado crushed what would be the fastest home run of the season when the ball scorched off his bat like a rocket to close the game at one. With Andrew McCutchen hitting a double to score Jean Segura, the Phillies were in place to get the win. Philly won the game four-to-three.
In the second game Phillies pitcher Aaron Nola was not only dealing but had a perfect game going into the seventh inning. It was stopped by a Brad Miller error. Before all of that, Odúbel Herrera started the game with a lead-off homer. The Phillies regained the lead in the eighth. After that, Nola stayed in the game to complete the game. Jake Cronenworth had other plans as he homered in the ninth to send the game into extra innings. In the 10th, a wild pitch sent in the winning run for the Padres.
The Phillies got back Rhys Hoskins from the IL and he did not disappoint. Along with a good outing by Kyle Gibson, Hoskins hit two home runs in the game. Along the homer brigade, Realmuto and Herrera smash one of their own. Gibson pitched eight strong innings to help give the Phillies the opportunity to take the win for the Phillies 7-4.
So the Phillies got back on track with a series win in San Diego. As they go back home to face the first place Tampa Bay Rays team. Things are getting bigger and bigger as the Braves continue to stay hot in the division. Both the division and the Wild Card are still within reach. As long as they handle business. Atlanta does have some difficult teams in their schedule as well. The schedule may favor the Phillies, but they will need to take full advantage if they want to make the playoffs.