The Philadelphia Phillies LHP Adam Morgan ( 1-9, 6.21) looked to build on his last QS, 6.2 In, 3H, 2R against the Natinals, as well as help the team build on their last W, and win a series. They faced the hard throwing Miami Marlins RHP Jose Arena (3-5, 5.40). He gave up only one earned run in 5.2 innings last time out against the Phils on July 19th, but did not figure in the decision as the Braves won it 2-1 in extra innings.
Morgan did all that and more, giving up only one run to the Marlins, and the offense scored just enough in the odd innings through the 5th to eke out a 4-3 win over Miami.
The Phillies got off to a good start on back to back singles by Cesar Hernandez and Odubel Herrera. A walk to Maikel Franco then loaded the bases. A Tommy Joseph sac fly, and a Freddy Galvis single brought home the first two, but that was all they could get, as Arena threw 32 pitches. Morgan followed with an easy 1-2-3 SDI.
The Phils kept adding runs in each of the next odd innings, something they had not done much of lately or this season overall. In the 3rd Joseph doubled down the LF line, scoring Herrara who had led off with a triple. Galvis knocked in another in the 5th, again scoring Odubel, who this time was HBP.
Meanwhile Morgan was breezing through the Marlins lineup until the bottom of the 5th when Jeff Francoeur reached to start the inning. J. T. Realmuto forced Francoeur at 2nd, but then two hits later he scored to end the shut out. A just deactivated Giancarlo Stanton also singled to make it 1st and 3rd with 2 outs, but Morgan got Dee Gordon swinging to end the threat, only giving up the one run. Four hits in the inning, but some bad base running to make an out on the scoring play, by the Marlins, helped out. Morgan was pulled after 6 strong innings – as much to have him out of the game with a chance for a W and a positive outlook, after two very good outings.
In the 8th off of Hector Neris, Ichiro hit a 2 run pinch hit HR to make the game interesting at 4-3 and eventually Hector put two more on, before he got Francoeur swinging to end the inning. First time since June 15th Neris gave up 2 runs or more.
Phillies just do not do easy as Jeanmar Gomez – abetted by a rare error by Franco (see below) – put two men on, but Jeanmar got Gordon looking to end the ballgame.
Adam Morgan well earned the W (2-9, 5.90) – his first W in four months, having lost nine straight decisions which is the longest streak in majors – 6 In, 5H, 1 Earned Run, 0BB, 5K, 85 Pitches – 54 for strikes. Urena got the L (3-6, 5.54) on 5In, 7H, 4R, all earned, 1BB, 5K. 0HR, 86 pitches – 61 for strikes. Edubray Ramos (11) and Neris (28) each notched an H, and Gomez felt his way to his 35th S.
This and That: It was the Phillies 1st series win since they swept the Rockies 8/12-14. The Phils had an error taken away by the scorer on the Francoeur hit. They have been the best in MLB with only 19 since the ASG. Herrara also made one spectacular running catch at the warning track – MLB Statcast showed him reaching 21.7 MPH in link above. The OF play has been much improved this season and the steady IF of Franco, Galvis and Hernandez have also played better than in the past – especially Galvis with 6 E. He had 17 last season in 14 more games started. 35 Saves for Gomez – 7th Phillies pitcher to reach that plateau.
RHP Jeremy Hellickson (10-8, 3.88 ERA) Vs RHP Andrew Cashner (4-11, 5.00) for the Marlins @ 7:10 PM. I will be back to cover that one as well.