Newly acquired Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Kyle Gibson turned in his second strong start in as many tries when he threw six innings one-run ball while only giving up four hits.
Gibson helped continue the momentum the Phillies have gained over the last five games in the first game in an ever-important three game series against the New York Mets.
On top of his strong outing on the mound, Gibson also secured an RBI single in the fifth inning to make it 2-1. The first of the Phillies runs came off of a solo shot to the right field second deck by Didi Gregorius, who also had a strong night at the plate.
Hector Neris came on in releif in the seventh inning and should have faced the minimum of three batters. However, third baseman Alec Bohm made a wide throw to Brad Miller at first allowing Jeff McNeil to take first with two outs.
Bohm, who has looked competent defensively as of late, made two errors on the evening in what should have been routine plays. It lends question to Joe Girardi’s decision to not start Ronald Torreyes, especially when Gibson relies on solid defense behind him. It also leaves to question why he wasn’t part of a double switch to start the seventh. Regardless, Neris got out of the inning unscathed and looks to have turned a corner now that he isn’t in as high of a leverage position.
No reason to have not double-switched Torreyes in for Bohm this past inning
— The Good Phight (@TheGoodPhight) August 7, 2021
The bottom of the seventh was relatively quiet for the Phillies bats at the bottom of the order. The only way to properly explain it is this lady:
Archie Bradley came in on relief during the top of the eighth, and like Heris looked great. His fastball touched 96 mph with his fastball, which is a encouraging sign considering his velocity issues earlier in the season. He capped of his appearance with strikeouts of both Javier Baez and Michael Conforto to keep the game 2-1 heading into the bottom of the inning.
In the bottom of the eighth, Bryce Harper continued on his torrid hot streak as he launched a two-run moonshot to dead away center, his MVP case is only getting stronger by the day. His timely hitting, especially in big situations and must-win games lends credence to his MVP argument. Where he goes, so too does this team.
Ian Kennedy was called into close and immediately gave up a homerun to Kevin Pillar to cut Philadelphia’s lead to 4-2. However, Kennedy was able to make quick work of the next three batters and notch his first save as a Phillie.
The biggest news of the night however is that Philadelphia is now in first place in the NL East by 0.5 games. They will look to expand on that lead on Saturday afternoon.