ATLANTA – The Phillies were six games away from winning the first game of a three-game streak against the defending champions on Friday, but the goal allowed six games in the eighth inning in the 7-2 loss Against the brave in Trust Park.
With 18 games remaining in the regular season, all against divisional opponents, it would be No. 5 seed Philadelphia if the post-season starts now—and No. 4 seed Atlanta would be. That means the two teams would face off in a top-of-three NL Wild Card series at Truist Park. The Braves and Phillies play each other six more times over the next nine days, as the two teams continue to get valuable information ahead of a potential Wild Card match.
Unfortunately for Velez, they have been reminded of how amazing Braves’ squad is, especially when Ronald Acuna Jr. is at the top of his game. Homer ignited the luminous Acuna in the eighth of six games as Ceranthon Dominguez squandered a strong start for Ranger Suarez.
Domínguez gave up five runs in three hits and two hits, and with each hit, the 36th crowd of the Braves’ season sale got louder. Dominguez scored only two wins before Nick Nelson entered to score the final from eighth, but not before allowing another round and two more strokes.
Domínguez was making his third appearance since leaving IL on 9/11. He missed three weeks with right triceps tendonitis and only appeared once in rehab with Triple-A Lehigh Valley before returning to the Majors. The bump in the road “comes with the” zone back into the throw groove in high-pressure situations, but Dominguez says it’s 100% physical.
“I wasn’t doing my shows,” Dominguez said through translator Diego Itedegui. “When I needed to put on a good show, I couldn’t do it. The first pitch hits weren’t there tonight, and I was late to the count.”
The Phillies’ loss came on a night that the Padres and Brewers both won. The Phils holds a 1/2 game lead over the Padres in second place for the Wild Card and is three games ahead of the Brewers, who are currently outwitting the outside side. Even as time wanes into the 2022 season, there is a lot of baseball that will be played to determine the end.
“Keep playing day in and day out, keep moving forward,” interim manager Rob Thompson said of his message to his players after the tough loss. “I mean, we lost a lot of tough matches this year and always come back. But we won a lot of matches too. So just keep your positive and keep moving forward. Tomorrow is a new day, and we go get them.”
Suarez had one of his best starts to the season, managing six innings and facing just five hits over the bottom line. He allowed running for two hits and three walking while he was hitting four.
“I thought it was cool,” Thompson said. “His court position, hits – his fastball was good tonight. It was 93, 94 [mph] Sometimes. And as I always said, when he hits the ball and locates the fast ball, the other courts play.”
Suárez was in a pitcher duel against Braves ace Max Fried, but after not having a base to reach base by three rounds, it took the Phillies one swing to get to the plate first.
Kyle Schwarber smashed another home run in the fourth inning — his second straight game for Homer — to give Philadelphia its first win of the competition. The blast was 39th of the season and 31st of first place, breaking Jimmy Rollins’ franchise record that he set in the 2007 NL MVP season.
Schwarber’s 39 home matches represented the highest level of his career, as he consolidated his lead in the National League over Austin Riley of Atlanta (36). Schwarber will be the first Philly to win the Premier League title since Ryan Howard in 2008 (48).
“That’s the heck of a player to be there with, so [that’s a] “A really cool thing,” Schwarber said of breaking Rollins’ record. I think great things will happen when I finish playing the game. I think these [achievements] You will settle in more. Right now, she’s just trying to win a few baseball games.”