NLCS Recap: Games 4 and 5 – Chase Field, Phoenix, Az.
Whad Up Whad Up. ThePenguinAZ with a NLCS summary of a Friday win to even the series at 2-2, only to be one more loss away from winter vacation. So I didn’t attend Friday’s game with the Bleacher Brothers crew but might have been a good thing since The Answerbacks won. Here is a small summary before Sunday football action.
On a cool Friday night, the Arizona Answerbacks and the Philadelphia Phillies played in the fourth game of the NLCS. The game was held at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona. Alek Thomas would be the savior and hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning to tie the game,and the Venezuelan Gabriel Moreno followed with a go-ahead single to give the Diamondbacks the lead.
This was a setup for a bullpen game for both the Phillies and the Diamondbacks, with Philadelphia having the upper hand through six-and-a-half innings thanks to a Kyle Schwarber bomb solo home run, a Brandon Marsh double and a Alec Bohm single that scored two . Trea Turner sacrifice fly from the fourth through seven innings. But Craig Kimbrel and the Phillies’ pitching staff could not hang on to an Answerbacks bullpen that is not much better. Kimbrel began the eighth and immediately gave up a leadoff double to #PinaPower Jr. Lourdes Gurriel, Jr.
After an Evan Longoria lineout, pinch-hitting Alex Thomas delivered a bomb of his own on an outside fastball into right field. Despite those struggles, Kimbrel stayed in the game. He got Dominicano Geraldo Perdomo to strike out, but El Nino(The Kid) Ketel Marte singled and a Corbin Carroll hit-by-pitch put runners on second and first. Jose Alvarado came on in relief of Kimbrel, but Moreno soon delivered the game-winner. The Answerbacks crowd went crazy and those red flags waved in the air savoring a game that would even the series 2-2.
Now onto Saturday. Temperature would hover around 100 in Phoenix (Its A Dry Heat), so Chase Field’s retractable roof was closed for the third straight game. The fish aka 28-time Olympic swimming medalist Michael Phelps threw out the ceremonial first pitch. The series was back to basically 0-0 with a possible 3 games to decide the National League Champs. ThePenguinAZ would miss the game until the 5th inning due to family activities aka errands, grocery stores run for snacks and drinks to come home and watch the game. So finally get home and recap what I missed and start off the top of the 6th inning.
Arizona again turned to Galls aka Zac Gallen for Game 5 of the NLCS in the desert, anticipating a strong start that would give them a series lead heading back to Philadelphia. Gallen labored early for the second time in the NLCS, putting the Diamondbacks on the brink of elimination.
Gallen would come up short in a battle of aces with Philadelphia’s ” Wheels” Zack Wheeler and the Diamondbacks lost 6-1 to the Phillies on Saturday in Game 5 of the NLCS.
Galls once again struggled at home, he would comment “The guys grind and do what they can. I just didn’t give them a chance tonight,” Gallen said. “They are just a good lineup. They capitalized on the mistakes I made.”
Philadelphia slugger “The Showman” Bryce Harper set the tone for Game 5, stealing home in the first inning then hitting a 444-foot home run in the sixth. He joined Randy Arozarena as the only players in postseason history to steal home and hit a home run in the same game. Harper’s steal came after Kyle Schwarber had already crossed the plate with the game’s first run.
Gallen was more careful in the opening inning Saturday than he was in Game 1, when Schwarber and Harper homered off him. This time, Schwarber got to first on an infield single before Harper singled him to second and Stott’s single brought Schwarber home. That put runners on the corners with J.T. Realmuto at the plate. Harper would take off.
The Answerbacks catcher Gabriel Moreno threw down to second as Harper took off for home. Shortstop Geraldo Perdomo short-hopped the throw to Moreno, who got barreled by Harper at the plate. Moreno would stay in the game after being attended by the D Backs medical staff.
This was Harper after the game on the collision. “Baseball play,” Harper said. “Big collision at the plate. I was making sure he was OK. Kind of the way he went down, I was making sure he was good and stable. Never want those moments or anybody to get hurt. But just a good position to put us in and be able to get up in that situation.”
The Answerbacks would leave runners in scoring position. The finesse part of their game over, the Phillies went to work on the slugging. Gallen kept them in the park until the sixth, when Schwarber destroyed a baseball, sending it 461 feet into the right-field stands. Two batters later, Harper’s blast also left the yard, as he belted it 444 feet from home plate. The rout was on as Realmuto added a home run one inning later.
For the first time this year, the 2023 Diamondbacks are one loss from being no more. They were pushed to this point in a 6-1 defeat Saturday night, one that gave the Phillies a 3-2 lead in this NLCS after dropping the previous two games. Above anyone else, they were pushed to that point by Kyle “The Bomber” Schwarber.
Do the young and new and improved Answerbacks have a reply on Monday. These will be the starting pitchers. RHP Aaron Nola (3-0, 0.96 ERA postseason) starts for the Phillies and RHP Merrill Kelly (1-1, 3.00 ERA) for the Diamondbacks.
It is now football time around the Penguin iceberg. Have a great Sunday Funday amongst family and friends. Lets Go Pack Go. Hopefully winning after a bye week traveling to Broncos country. Game start is set for 1:25pm in 60+ degree weather in Empower Field at Mile High. Be on the lookout for a short report on The Packers hopefully getting a much needed win.
Lets Go Answerbacks and Packers Yo!!!!