Hey, the Phillies won! They were good AND they won! How's that for a bright side?!
Overall, this was a competent and efficient (if slightly boring) 5-0 win for the Phillies. Aaron Nola was deadly efficient, hurling 85 pitches over seven shutout innings, racking up seven strikeouts. He allowed seven hits and just one walk. This is the Aaron Nola we all signed up for. The Braves got absolutely nothing out of their seven hits, which is never not satisfying to watch. Nola even snagged a line drive in the sixth inning.
The Phillies had nine hits tonight, but for seven innings only two of them had crossed home plate. Their first run wasn't even scored on a hit. Aaron Altherr grounded into a double play in the fourth inning, which scored Cesar Hernandez, who had doubled to lead off the inning. Andres Blanco tripled in the fifth inning, and was knocked in by Brian Bogusevic (with an assist from Jace Peterson, who deflected the ball with his bare hand). Not exactly brilliant offensive prowess, but Aaron Nola kept the Braves from challenging.
Ken Giles, in his fifth multi-inning save of the season, closed out the game with a little extra breathing room. Breathing room provided by Odubel Herrera, who hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the eighth inning. Children, once upon a time the Braves had an unbeatable bullpen. And then a man who looks like Garth Brooks beat them into the ground. Just a few years later, the Braves got really bad and traded the survivors of Garth Brooks lookalike to other teams. Now, their bullpen gives up three-run homers to the Phillies. The end. Isn't that a great story! It's one of my favorites. Would you like to hear another story? OK, here goes. Once upon a time, there was a Braves reliever named Craig Kimbrel. When he would get ready to pitch a baseball, he'd lean down with his back parallel to the ground and stick his arms straight out like an awkward bird, if a bird somehow looked like a human. One day, when the Braves were playing the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, bored and ingenious Phillies fans came up with the perfect way to mock him.
Phillies fans looked forward to trolling him for years to come. Unfortunately, Craig the Awkward Bird-Human was traded to a far off land called San Diego when his team failed at being good. While people all over the land rejoiced at the suckiness of the Braves, Phillies fans mourned the loss of such an easy-to-troll pitcher. The end.
What I'm saying is that I miss Craig Kimbrel solely for The Kimbrel.
Even though we have no reason to use the .gif of The Kimbrel anymore (other than the reason I just made up), maybe we can find a new .gif to use when we need cheering up. How about this one?
NOPE THAT'S NOT IT NOPE NOPE NOPE MOVING ON.
(.gif provided by @dj_mosfett)