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Bryce Harper’s bat warms up as Phillies look for series win against Braves on Sunday


Harper’s bat warms up as Phillies hunt for series win Sunday against Braves originally appeared NBC Sports Philadelphia

If someone told you that a week ago, Phillies had a chance to win the 4-game series against Atlanta Bravesyou would have taken it and run to the bank.

You would have taken a split after things went like they did last weekend with the Phillies in Atlanta.

Even on the crucial final day of the regular season, where the Phillies are looking to secure their first playoff spot in a decade, it’s all about perspective.

The Phils lost 6-3 to the Braves at Citizens Bank Park on Saturday.Braves devastated Bailey Falter He got off to a good start with 10 hits and 6 runs in 3 2/3 innings. Kyle Wrightwon his 20th Game of the season after taking a no-hitter in the sixth inning.

Losing 14-3 in front of a huge crowd of 36,692 was disheartening, but the Phils had to pay attention to the big picture.

They defeated the Braves in the first two games of the series to at least guarantee a split.They can still win the series behind the win Kyle Gibson (he will face Charlie Morton) at the final home game of the season on Sunday.

Certainly, the Phillies will win the series after losing to the Braves in a three-game series last weekend in Atlanta.

“It’s going to be very big for us.” Bryce Harper Said.

These two teams could meet again in the first round of the playoffs in 13 days. But first Phils has to get there. With his 11 games left in the regular season, the Phils played his 10 games away, going 36-35. The Phils came out on Saturday, leading San Diego by half his game and Milwaukee by 2½ games in a three-team race for his final two NL wildcard spots. San Diego and Milwaukee were playing late on Saturday.

The Phils defeated Atlanta in the first two games of the series, 1-0 and 9-1.The Braves were still without offensive dynamo Ronald Acuna Jr. (back pain) Saturday and slugger Matt Olson didn’t start either. Still, the Braves’ offense didn’t stop. William Contreras In the third inning, he hit a solo home run against Falter. Michael Harris II hit a two-run shot in the fourth to keep the four-run rally. Falter relied heavily on the fastball, and the Braves did damage with it in the fourth.

Manager Rob Thomson said, “He has a lot of spin, he’s good at extension, and he can hit when he’s not above the barrel.” “He was in his happy zone.

“He has done very well for us. He had a little rest today.”

Folter helped keep the Phillies afloat Zach Wheeler The team that was down lost their final two games to the Braves after winning a six-game streak started by Falter.

Falter offered no solace in his earlier contributions.

“I didn’t work today,” he said.

Meanwhile, Wright cruised for the Braves. Rhys Hoskins In the 6th inning, he got a double with one out. Harper cut the Braves’ lead to his 6-2 with a home run, and Wright finished with his 97 pitches.

The Phillies scored one in the seventh to make it a three-run game, and Hoskins missed a three-run homer that would have tied the game by just a few feet when he lined the ball into left field. He eventually struck out and Phils kept quiet in the eighth and ninth innings.

The crowd, who had fallen asleep to Wright’s good work over the first five innings, really got into the action in the seventh. I thought it would be fun to see the Braves and Phillies go head-to-head in the first-round playoffs.

“It was really cool to have a crowd that was with us today and joined in for us,” Harper said. I can’t imagine the place going crazy.It was fun to see that crowd and be a part of it.”

Even with the loss, there is one big plus for the Phillies. Harper’s home run was a line drive to left field. Maybe it was the bolt that set him in motion. He was 68 for 10 (.147) in September before at bat. If he heats up in the last 11 games, he might just ride the magic carpet into the playoffs for the Phils.

“He had a great plate at bat. It’s nothing like what we’ve seen in the last few days,” Thomson said. “He was balanced and on time. His swing was aggressive and his head was still.”

When asked if he found anything, Harper said, “I felt good. Every day I try to find something. Like I said last month, I don’t miss pitches in the zone, I swing balls out of the zone. I need to stop doing it, and if I can do that, simplify everything and I will be where I need to be.”

The Phillies and Braves have one game left in the regular season series. The Braves have 10 wins and the Phillies have 8. Phils won the season he can’t win a series, but he can win this series. It’s a great way to wrap up the home portion of the schedule and head off for his final 10-game sprint. Postseason drought is life or death.

“We have to dust ourselves off and win the series,” said Thomson.



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