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Seventh inning surprise: Phillies 3, Pirates 2

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The Phillies were stifled by the Pirates today in all but one inning, and that inning is all that matters.

Philadelphia Phillies v Pittsburgh Pirates
I love you, Maikel.
Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Let’s distill the Phillies’ 3-2 win over the Pirates down to its essential essence. To talk about this game, you need to talk about two things: Jake Arrieta, and the top of the seventh inning.

Jake Arrieta needed this start

Boy did he ever. Since the start of June, Arrieta has a 6.16 ERA, and hadn’t pitched into the seventh inning once. His ERA went from 2.16 to 3.54. He needed this start to go well, and he delivered. He pitched seven solid innings, allowing just two runs and walking one while striking out eight. It’s those eight strikeouts that were most encouraging today. Jake has increasingly relied on ground balls to get outs, but with the defense behind him sometimes so-so (or worse, actually), seeing him return to the strikeout is great.

The Phillies got it done in the seventh inning

They went into the seventh inning down 2-0. They left the seventh inning with a 3-2 lead. It started when Odubel Herrera hit a one-out single. He was out a second when Carlos Santana hit into a force out, but it wasn’t so bad since Nick Williams hit a triple right after, giving the Phillies their first run of the game.

The fun didn’t stop there! Scott Kingery tied the game with a single, scoring Williams from third. Then Jorge Alfaro came up. He hit a double that he tried so hard to stretch into a triple, but Kingery had already flew home by the time he was tagged out. The go-ahead run scored, and the Phillies were up 3-2.

That’s where the score would stay. Serathony Dominguez handled the eighth, looking sharper than he had in awhile. (That’s what a little rest will do to your flame throwing pitcher! Who knew!?) Victor Arano allowed a lead off double in the ninth, but dominated the next three batters to lock down the win.

That’s how you do it, folks. The Phillies have won six straight games, and have a chance to sweep the Pirates on Sunday. Sweet, sweet music to my ears.