They say momentum is as good as your next starting pitcher – so even with a tough loss in Game 4, the Philadelphia Phillies were just fine.
The Phillies scored early and often and got great pitching, and after losing Games 3 and 4 of the NLCS, they have taken a three-games-to-two lead over the Arizona Diamondbacks with their 6-1 win in Game 5 on Saturday.
The Phillies were quick to get on the board after Friday night’s tough loss. Bryson Stott got the scoring started with an RBI single, and then Bryce Harper swiped home on a double steal. In the sixth, Kyle Schwarber did what he does best: hit home runs. He made it a 3-0 lead with a solo shot, and Harper added another.
The Game 4 hero in Alek Thomas went deep in the bottom of the seventh with a solo shot, but J.T. Realmuto did him better, belting a two-run dinger in the eighth to put Philadelphia up 6-1.
Zack Wheeler continued his postseason dominance, tossing seven innings of one-run, six-hit ball while he struck out eight and walked just one. Wheeler’s postseason ERA now sits at 2.08. Jeff Hoffman, Seranthony Dominguez, and Matt Strahm combined for the final six outs.
It was a rough outing for Zac Gallen, but he gave Arizona length with his six innings of work. He was charged with the loss by allowing four runs.
The Phillies are now one win away from their second-straight World Series – it would be the first time they won back-to-back pennants since 2008 and 2009.
If the Phillies win Game 6, and the Houston Astros win their Game 6 on Sunday, it will be the first time the World Series had the same teams in back-to-back years since 1977 and 1978 when the New York Yankees beat the Los Angeles Dodgers twice in a row.