WASHINGTON – Joe Girardi didn’t ditch the idea Tuesday afternoon that he cobbled together another unconventional lineup in the middle of a pennant race.
He was quick to mention that the Phillies were still hoping to play JT Realmuto in first base if his left ankle reacted positively to pre-game activity. It responded OK, but not good enough to play with. So Girardi stuck with what he had. He met Freddy Galvis leadoff for the first time since 2019. He met Jorge Bonifacio, who has had six home runs in the major leagues since 2017, in fifth place. He met Ronald Torreyes, who had an OPS of .594 on Aug. 6. He met rookies Matt Vierling – who started at first base for the first time in his career in the big league – in seventh and Rafael Marchan in eighth.
The Phillies scored 18 goals in a 12-6 win over the Nationals at Nationals Park. You have won five games in a row and will compete on the 2nd 1/2. September entered the National League East behind the Braves with 30 games. Philly is also 2 1/2 games behind the Reds and Padres for the second NL Wild Card.
It’s a remarkable run considering the Phillies are playing without Rhys Hoskins, Didi Gregorius, and Realmuto. For the first time in a series of seven games from June 19 to 24, 1933, you have scored seven or more runs in six consecutive games.
“We got donations from everywhere,” said Girardi.
Bryce Harper hit 0.337 in August with 11 doubles, one threesome, 10 home runs, 25 RBIs and a 1.231 OPS. He could be the Phillies’ first NL Player of the Month since Domonic Brown in May 2013. Harper started the fourth inning by dropping a perfect bunt on the third baseline to hit the shift for a single.
“It’s a really good idea because you have to get something going, isn’t it?” Said Girardi.
Nationals left-handed Patrick Corbin attempted to sneak a curve ball past Andrew McCutchen at 65.3 mph, but he pushed the field into the left stands for a double home run. It was the slowest pitch McCutchen hit for a home run in his 13-year career.
“Suddenly you feel like you’re in a game,” said Girardi.
Bonifacio’s infield single with the bases loaded in the fifth cut led the Nationals 5-3. In the sixth single, Vierling scored and Marchan hit a two-run homer into left midfield to tie the game. Marchan has homered twice in 49 record appearances in two major leagues in two seasons. In his five-year minor league career, he has been homeless to 1,074 record appearances.
Can anyone explain that?
“It’s a great feeling to meet this homer on The Show,” said Marchan. “Everyone wants to beat a few homers, but if you’ve never met one in the Minors and met one here, it’s like one of the best feelings in the world, and even more so when you tie the game and do this rally for that Game to win. “
The Phillies continued to score goals in the sixth. They loaded the bases and Harper’s single right scored two runs to give them a 7-5 lead. They scored two more to make it 9-5.
Quadruple finished with four hits, hitting the ball hard in all five at-bats, with exit speeds of 108.6, 104.5, 102.7, 105.6, and 106.3 mph. He joined the team on Tuesday because of Travis Jankowski is on paternity leave. Vierling is an outfielder who came up with the idea of playing a bit of infield last summer. He started six games on first base with Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season, so he’s no stranger to the position. But he doesn’t play enough there to even have a first baseman glove.
He borrowed Hoskins’ Tuesday.
“It’s pretty exciting,” said Vierling. “When I know where this team is, knowing what this team is doing, being able to take on a role and just getting me there, I’m grateful enough to have the opportunity.”
So is Marchan. Contributions from players like you and Brad Miller – who beat a pinch-hit homer in game ninth – can keep the Phillies on the hunt.
“This is a great opportunity,” said Marchan. “We are ready for what the team needs. Whenever they need us, we’ll be ready to play the game right and help the team. “