A new cleanup hitter! A fresh start for this offense, facing a pitcher who has struggled a bit of late! All the things coming together to get this offense in gear!
Facing Kyle Wright, who has given up nine runs in his last eleven innings, the Phillies should have been better equipped to have their offense step up in the post-Harper part of the season. Instead, they were shut down once again and face even more questions about how they can win games without their MVP in the lineup. They’ve got solid starting pitching, tonight another example of which coming from Ranger Suarez, but without run support, it really doesn’t matter.
Rhys Hoskins got the scoring start when he was able to turn on a pitch from Wright and somehow, some way, keep the ball fair enough to hit the netting on the foul pole for a solo home run.
Rhys Hoskins over last 3 weeks— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) June 29, 2022
Batting over .320
OPS over 1.049
Suarez would give it right back in the fourth when he allowed another double to Matt Olson, then, with one out and Olson on third, he walked Marcell Ozuna. Williams Contreras singled home Olson to tie it up and it looked like the Phillies might get out of the inning when Adam Duvall grounded into what they thought was a double play, but was quickly overruled by replay and gave the Braves a 2-1 lead.
The score would remain that way as Suarez would keep pitching rather well until the seventh. In that inning, he got two quick outs and crossed into the 100 pitch nether regions, something he hasn’t done much of in his career, so they weren’t sure how he would react. Maybe it was a little much to stretch him, but he didn’t have very many stressful pitches to throw, so Rob Thomson rolled dice he could get through the inning. On his 107th pitch of the night, the Braves made them pay.
Of course, it was Duvall.
Adam Duvall hit a baseball very far. pic.twitter.com/V9hC8a1L4N— Bally Sports: Braves (@BravesOnBally) June 30, 2022
The Braves would tack on another run in the inning when Michael Harris II somehow turned on a Jose Alvarado 100 mile per hour sinker and drove it into center field for an RBI single, effectively ending the game. With the offense stagnating yet again, there wasn’t much hope for a comeback, but at least there was one feel good moment still in the game.
By now, you know the Mark Appel story, so now it was just a matter of getting him into a game. Tonight was the night and against Phillie killer Duvall, he recorded his first strike out of his career.
Mark Appel notches his 1st career MLB Strikeout against Adam Duvall pic.twitter.com/QEh76mUb8Q— MLB News (@BillyTalksBSB) June 30, 2022
Aaron Nola goes tomorrow night in what looks like a must win game for the Phillies if they want to get something started. Let’s hope the offense shows a pulse.