The Phillies dodged potentially the worst breakdown since the 1993 World Series with a thrilling, improbable and truly mind-blowing extra-inning win in Washington. The Phils trail the Dodgers by one game with four to play. Los Angeles beat Colorado 6-4 tonight.
In the end, big hits, smart at bats and three good extra frames pitched by Rick White and Clay Condrey outnumbered the nightmarish meltdowns, but no moment was bigger than Jimmy Rollins’ two-out, two-run triple in the 14th to end the scoreless gridlock. The Phils squandered scoring chances all night long, stranding 15 before the night was over. The Phils finally shut down the Nats in the 14th with a hair-raising save by Fabio Castro to win 8-7.
A game ball also goes out to Chris Coste, who caught every inning of this game and went 3-for-6 with a big leadoff walk. Chase Utley homered early and knocked in two before turning the eventual game-saving, brilliantly played double play ball in the 14th. Abraham Nunez delivered two timely doubles and scored twice.
All of the above picked up the slack for Ryan Howard's "protection" Jeff Conine, who went 0-for-7 with nine men stranded batting from the five-hole. Howard drew three intentional walks and never crossed home plate.
The Phillies were in position to win it for Cole Hamels, who pitched six solid frames a lifetime ago. But in the 9th, Tom Gordon loaded the bases and walked in a run to tie the game 5-5. Flash would eventually get out of the inning. Had it not been for minor miracles in just about every inning that followed, Flash might have been charged with spearheading one of the all-time choke jobs in Philadelphia sports history.