Kyle Schwarber
PHILADELPHIA - It was like a chapter lifted from a movie script executed to perfection. The performance the Phillies displayed on Tuesday in Game 2 of the National League Championship Series was that good. 

Timely hitting coupled with the long ball, along with stellar pitching and outstanding defense; this was the storyline the Phillies followed to cruise to a 10-0 victory over the Diamondbacks at Citizens Bank Park. 

The Phillies now carry a commanding 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series as the action will shift to Phoenix beginning with Game 3 on Thursday. 

"I mean, you can't really draw it up any better than the last two games have gone for us," said J.T. Realmuto. "There's been a ton of plays made in the infield and outfield that weren't easy plays, and we've turned them all into outs. We've hit the ball well also. With that being said, this series is a long ways from being over. " 

As has been the case this postseason, the Phillies relied on the long ball early on Tuesday. Trea Turner hit a solo homer in the first to set the tone. Kyle Schwarber followed with a solo shot of his own in the third. He would homer again in the sixth. 

Arizona starter Merrill Kelly got through five innings, but the Phillies lineup erupted to push across four runs in the sixth and another four in the seventh to put the game out of reach. Kelly surrendered four runs over 5 2/3 innings but kept the Diamondbacks in the game. Relievers Joe Mantiply and Ryne Nelson weren't as successful, combining to allow six runs on seven hits while recording just three outs. 

Alec Bohm made a pair of spectacular diving plays early in the contest, one to the left side and another to the right. He also lashed a two-run double in the seventh. 

Schwarber scored three times, while Realmuto drove in three runs, including a two-run double that highlighted a four-run sixth inning. 

"The biggest thing is just trying when we get our hitter's pitch, we don't want to miss it," Schwarber said. "That's the biggest thing right now. I feel like we're doing a really good job of really locking into that and cutting down the swings. Next thing you know, it's showing in the slug." 

Aaron Nola pieced together another postseason gem, tossing six scoreless frames while scattering three hits. He didn't walk a batter and struck out six. He's now surrendered just two runs this postseason over 18 2/3 innings. 

The Philadelphia bullpen combined to allow just one hit over the final three frames, inching the Phillies within two games of a return to the World Series. 

Through eight postseason games the Phillies have a team ERA of 1.39. The starters haven't issued a walk since Game 3 of the NLDS, and the 0.83 team WHIP and .174 batting average against are the best of any team this postseason. 

"I think our whole starting staff, the way that they've thrown the ball the whole year, they keep us in games," Schwaber said. "And they give us an opportunity to go out there and score runs and get a win at the end of the day. 

"It's not going to be every day, but the way that these guys are throwing the ball right now, it's been fantastic. And it makes our jobs a lot easier, and hopefully as we keep going through this, we can make their jobs a little bit easier too with scoring some runs." 

Teams that have taken a 2-0 lead in a best-of-seven LCS have advanced to the World Series 89-percent of the time (31-of-35). The Phillies could potentially wrap up the series as early as Friday.  

"That's a really good ball club over there that we've got to go into their stadium and play now," Realmuto said. "We just have to try to keep the momentum on our side, continue to play good baseball, continue to put together good at-bats and attack the strike zone. If we keep playing this brand of baseball, we feel pretty good about our chances. But it's far from over."

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post
Philadelphia Baseball Review - Phillies News, Rumors and Analysis