Phillies June Mojo Returns At Sweltering CBP

The Phillies have posted a combined 36-16 record over the last two Junes. A month that was needed to propel the Phillies back into the race in 2022, and 2023.  Heading into Friday night’s series with the defending National League Champion Arizona Diamondbacks the Phillies were sporting a 9-7 record for the month of June.

Friday

Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Gabriel Moreno, and Joc Pederson hit homers against struggling Phillies starter Taijuan Walker to lead the Diamondbacks to a 5-4 win over Philadelphia on Friday night. It was the first game between the teams since Arizona won the final two games of the National League Championship Series. On the road last season en route to the club’s second World Series appearance.

Jordan Montgomery (6-4) allowed only five hits and two earned runs over six innings. Montgomery who signed late in spring training as a free agent has won his last three starts. Dropping his ERA from 6.80 to 5.71. Trea Turner and Nick Castellanos homered for Philadelphia. Which has dropped six of its last nine games. Walker, the Phillies’ fifth starter, has been the subject of speculation about being replaced in the starting rotation.

More Friday

He has allowed 10 home runs in his 10 starts (52 1/3 innings). His ERA is 5.60 while the rest of the Phillies’ starting staff has a combined ERA of 2.67. His sinker has not been accurate, and his velocity has dipped. When asked about Walker’s future in Philadelphia’s rotation, Phillies manager Rob Thomson was non-committal. Walker was replaced by Spencer Turnbull, who threw three innings of scoreless relief. Gurriel started the scoring in the second with a solo homer.

Moreno followed with a two-run shot with one out in the third. Which was immediately followed by Pederson’s solo shot that drew boos from the sellout crowd at Citizens Bank Park.  Pederson had drawn some ire from Phillies fans for posting a picture with the Phanatic in the off-season. Playing “Dancing On My Own” the club’s playoff song for the last two seasons with a caption of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” on social media in a move that many believed was a sign he was coming to Philadelphia. He was heckled after striking out. Geraldo Perdomo added an insurance run in the eighth with an RBI single.

Saturday

 Zack Wheeler allowed one run and two hits in seven innings while Bryce Harper, Alec Bohm, Nick Castellanos, and David Dahl homered as the Phillies cruised to a 12-1 win over the Diamondbacks on Saturday. At 50-26, the Phillies became the first National League team to reach 50 wins.

Castellanos had a season-high five RBI and hit his second homer in as many days. Harper added three RBI and hit his 18th of the season into the second deck in right field in the third inning during a 4-for-5 day. Bohm followed Harper’s shot with his eighth of the season.

The top five spots in the Phillies starting batting order Kyle Schwarber, Trea Turner, Harper, Bohm, and Castellanos — were a combined 10 for 19 with 10 runs and 10 RBI as Philadelphia reached double-digit runs for the fifth time this season. Seven of the Phillies’ 14 hits were for extra bases.

Wheeler (9-4) bounced back from a struggling performance in Baltimore last Sunday when he allowed eight runs and four homers in just 4 1/3 innings. He didn’t allow a runner until the fifth and struck out eight. Tucker Barnhart had an RBI single in the fifth inning. Jake McCarthy had Arizona’s other hit.

Diamondbacks starter Tommy Henry (2-3) allowed six runs and six hits in 3 2/3 innings. Dahl who replaced Castellanos in the eighth inning — connected on a two-run drive in the bottom off Barnhart, who went from behind the plate to the mound.

Sunday

Cristopher Sánchez tossed seven scoreless innings a day after the Phillies gave him a new contract, Bryce Harper doubled and singled, and NL-best Philadelphia beat the Diamondbacks 4-1 on Sunday.

David Dahl hit a two-run single, and Bryson Stott and Nick Castellanos also had RBI for the Phillies. Philadelphia took two of three in the series that was a rematch of last season’s NL Championship Series, won by Arizona.

Sánchez’s consistency set up the series-clinching victory. Ketel Marte hit an RBI single in the ninth for the Diamondbacks, who managed just six hits. Philadelphia entered Sunday with a seven-game lead over Atlanta in the NL East. The Diamondbacks began to play nine games back of the Dodgers in the NL West but in the thick of the wild-card race.

The first pitch of 11:36 a.m. marked the earliest start to a game at Citizens Bank Park, which opened in 2004. Sánchez (5-3) struck out four, walked none, and allowed only three singles.

Philadelphia gave the 27-year-old lefty an early lead when Harper led off the second inning with a double off Slade Cecconi (2-6) and scored on Castellanos’ first-pitch single to left. It was the 800th career RBI for Castellanos.

End Game

José Alvarado tossed a 1-2-3 eighth, striking out two. Jeff Hoffman surrendered Marte’s run-scoring hit in the ninth. Dahl’s two-run single in the sixth off Justin Martinez made it 3-0, and the Phillies added a run in the seventh on Stott’s opposite-field RBI single.

The contest was played in front of a sellout crowd of 44,079 on a steamy day in Philadelphia, with a morning game-time temperature of 91 degrees. Lovullo ditched the customary uniform in favor of a gray T-shirt with a Diamondbacks logo. Plate umpire Ben May ejected Diamondbacks bench coach Jeff Banister in the bottom of the sixth inning after May called a pitch-clock violation on lefty Joe Mantiply. Cecconi worked three innings, allowing one run on five hits.

Matt Bednarczyk
Matt Bednarczyk

Matt Bednarczyk is your host of Talking Philly Sports With Matty B. He is a proud retired US Army Sergeant First Class, he is also a combat veteran with over 80 months served in Afganistan, and Iraq . Huge Hockey Fan. Matt is a lifelong 4 for 4 Philly sports fan. Born and raised on the Mayfair and Tacony neighborhood lines of Northeast Philly. He brings over 40 years of Philadelphia Sports passion and provides a realistic look at our Major Sports Teams and the most passionate sports fans on the planet. Look for his show live on Edge of Philly Sports.

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