The Phillies continue to dance their way through the playoffs, clinching the NLDS with an 8-3 win over the Braves in today’s Game 4. Two trade deadline acquisitions from the Angels played key roles in Philadelphia’s victory — Brandon Marsh’s three-run homer in the second inning gave the Phils an early lead that they would never relinquish, and starter Noah Syndergaard allowed one earned run over three innings of work. J.T. Realmuto’s inside-the-park homer in the third inning was another highlight, as Realmuto became the first catcher to ever hit an inside-the-parker during a postseason game.
Entering the playoffs as the lowest seed in the National League bracket, Philadelphia upset the Cardinals in the Wild Card Series and have now eliminated the defending World Series champions. The Phillies will now head to the NLCS for the first time since 2010, and will await the chance to oust another higher-seeded opponent in either the Padres or the Dodgers.
More from the City of Brotherly Love…
- David Robertson was left off the NLDS roster due to a calf strain suffered while jumping to celebrate Bryce Harper’s home run in Game 2 of the Wild Card Series. Talking to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Scott Lauber and other reporters about the “embarrassing” injury, Robertson said he received an injection last Monday, and is hoping to be available when the NLCS begins on Tuesday. The veteran right-hander has yet to throw off a mound, but he is throwing on flat ground. Another deadline addition, Robertson posted an impressive 2.70 ERA and 30.3% strikeout rate over 23 1/3 innings for the Phillies after being acquired from the Cubs.
- Phillies hitting coach Kevin Long has been considered for past managerial openings with the Nationals and Mets, and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports (via Twitter) that Long is again gaining some “buzz” as a managerial candidate. Long is in his 16th consecutive year as a big league hitting coach and his first in Philadelphia, after past stints with the Nationals, Mets, and Yankees. He worked mostly as a hitting coach in the minors prior to his MLB work, but Long was a manager in the Royals’ farm system from 1997-99. Long also spent all eight of his seasons as a player in Kansas City’s minor league ranks, so speculatively, these past ties could be of interest to a Royals team looking to replace Mike Matheny as manager. The Marlins, White Sox, Rangers, and Blue Jays are the other teams in search of a new skipper, though Toronto may be leaning towards retaining interim manager John Schneider, and the Rangers are reportedly favoring ex-Giants manager Bruce Bochy.