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Get ahead, stay ahead: Phillies 11, Nationals 5

Closer than it should have been, but still an impressive offensive display

Washington Nationals v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

Patrick Corbin was such a hot commodity the offseason before 2019. Several teams were after him, which included the Nationals, Yankees and Phillies. As we all know now, the Nationals would end up with him, offering him that sixth year that he craved, but one has to think that the Phillies put forth a very solid effort to try and make him a part of what they were trying to do. Had they succeeded in signing Corbin, they likely would have been out on Zack Wheeler the following offseason and who know where we’d be now.

I can tell you this: they are much, much, much better off now.

Corbin took the mound for the Nationals this evening, already a shell of his 2019 self when he helped Washington win the World Series. Tonight, he proved that perhaps the end is closer than even he though as he was absolutely and completely shelled by the Phillies in the first inning, not able to even make it out of the inning before he had allowed six runs and basically ended any chance the Nationals had at trying to grab momentum. Rhys Hoskins started off the scoring by bashing a home run in the first inning for third consecutive night.

Corbin actually had a chance to get out of the inning with no more damage done, but walking Alec Bohm with one out, allowing a single to Nick Castellanos with two outs gave the Phillies a spark. Matt Vierling to into a 1-2 count, but was able to grab a slider that didn’t get buried enough and golfed into the stands for a 4-0 lead.

Jean Segura singled and Edmundo Sosa walked to keep the party rolling, bringing up Bryson Stott. The matchup favored Corbin, but once again some really good hitting by another member of Phillies Daycare gave Stott a triple, the Phillies a 6-0 lead and an early exit for Corbin.

It didn’t get much better in the second inning for Washington as Bohm started the inning with a double, J.T. Realmuto hit a triple and Castellanos singled, giving the Phillies two more runs. Sosa doubled, driving in Castellanos and the Phillies had a 9-0 lead that felt comfortable enough for most people to kind of tune things out and coast the rest of the game.

This applied to the bullpen, apparently.

Ranger Suarez was the starter for the Phillies and he cruised through the first five innings, allowing almost nothing, but had a rising pitch count coming into the sixth inning. Suarez would allow Luke Voit to start the inning with a solo home run, then walked Joey Meneses with one out, followed by a double by Lane Thomas to put runners on second and third. That ended Suarez’s night, giving way to Nick Nelson, who did get one out before letting the Nationals get two more runs on a Tres Barrera double. Barrera would score when Victor Robles singled, but the inning would finally end on the next batter.

It was now 9-4 and the Nationals had that momentum they just could not grab from the Phillies yet this series. When they’re own bullpen came out for the bottom half, it was easy to see why. Carl Edwards, Jr. would walk Bohm to start the inning, facing Realmuto with a runner on. Realmuto would continue his surge lately, launching a two-run shot into the bullpen and getting two runs back for the Phillies.

The rest of the night was watching Andrew Bellatti give up a sacrifice fly in the seventh, Jose Alvarado get hit a bit and Corey Knebel walk a tight rope in the ninth, but no more runs were allowed and the Nationals, though not without a fight, went down yet again in Philadelphia. A strange night for the bullpen, but the lead accrued by the offense proved to be just too much for Washington to catch up with.

It’s kind of scary to think where the Phillies might be had Corbin put pen to paper here instead of Washington. He might be better, he might not be as horrendous, but we can all thank our lucky stars that they aligned a different way in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 offseasons. Things could be in a much different place.