Phillies’ victory over Nationals comes at a cost as Realmuto goes down originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
The Phillies won for the sixth time in the last eight games on Tuesday night, but the 6-2 victory over the Washington Nationals came at a cost.
All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto had to leave the game moments after taking a foul ball off the left knee in the bottom of the seventh inning.
There was no immediate word on Realmuto’s condition.
Josh Bell hit the ball that struck Realmuto’s knee. At the time, there were two outs in the inning and the bases were loaded with the Phillies clinging to a one-run lead. Realmuto stayed in the game and recorded the putout as Jose Alvarado struck out Bell to preserve the one-run lead.
A half-inning later, the Phillies rallied for three runs, two coming on a pinch-hit single by Andrew Knapp, who replaced Realmuto.
Chase Anderson pitched five strong innings but failed to get an out in the sixth. He managed to pick up his second win as a Phillie thanks to the work of the bullpen and some clutch hitting late in the game.
Manager Joe Girardi teed one up for the second-guessers when he let Anderson hit with the bases loaded with no outs and the Phillies up, 3-0, in the top of the sixth. The Phils, who were 1 for their first 10 with runners in scoring position, got nothing in that inning and things got tight when Anderson was charged with two runs in the bottom of the inning.
After leaving the bases loaded in the sixth, the Phils left two more in the seventh before pulling away in the eighth.
Odubel Herrera doubled in the top of the eighth and scored on a hit by Alec Bohm. Knapp then stroked his two-run single to give Connor Brogdon and Hector Neris some cushion as they got the final six outs.
Herrera had two doubles and scored two runs. Over his last six games, he is 7 for 18 (.389) with two doubles, a homer, four walks, four RBIs and three runs scored.
The Phillies took a quick 1-0 lead on a solo home run by Bryce Harper in the first inning, built it to 2-0 on a two-out single by Rhys Hoskins in the third and to 3-0 on a sacrifice fly by Andrew McCutchen in the fourth. McCutchen’s sacrifice fly was preceded by a double from Herrera and a sacrifice bunt by Anderson.
If Anderson had broken out in hives as he walked through the door of Nationals Park before the ballgame, it would have been understandable. In three previous games at the ballpark, he’d allowed 19 hits and 17 runs in 9⅓ innings.
His most recent outing in that ballpark was particularly nightmarish. On August 18, 2019, while pitching for Milwaukee, he was tagged for nine hits and 10 runs in 2⅓ innings.
Anderson put all that behind him in this one. He survived a couple of hits and 23 pitches to put up a zero in the first inning and then did not allow another hit until Trea Turner led off the bottom of the sixth with a solo homer.
Anderson walked the next batter, Juan Soto, and was lifted from the game. Soto eventually scored as the Nats cut the Phils’ lead to a run.
Anderson has made seven starts for the Phillies. This was just the second time he pitched into the sixth inning. Neither time did he get an out in the inning.
The fourth and fifth spots in the starting rotation have been an issue for the Phillies and it’s no secret that Spencer Howard is down in Triple A, getting ready to fill a starter’s role with the big club. Vince Velasquez and Anderson are currently holding down those spots, but for how much longer? Anderson pitched well for five innings Tuesday night, but the Phillies could have used more.
The Phillies are 19-17, a game behind the first-place New York Mets in the NL East. The Phils have not won a road series this season. With Zack Wheeler and Zach Eflin on the mound the next two games, they would seem to have a good chance of getting it done in this series.
But of more immediate concern is Realmuto’s condition. Check back for updates.