Phillies sweep of St. Louis showed the excitement of postseason baseball

by Marc Narducci | Oct 10, 2022
Phillies sweep of St. Louis showed the excitement of postseason baseball
There had been a lot of talk lately in the regular season that there wasn’t as much interest in the Phillies while they were making a playoff push. The Phillies, while attempting to clinch the wild card berth, were playing before some small home crowds.

Did fans buy into the Phillies as a legitimate contender? Either way, the Phillies captured the sixth and final playoff berth and now have also earned the respect of their fans after winning the best of three opening series at St. Louis 2 games to none.

As the wild card team, the Phillies had to play their opening round games on the road against the Central Division champion Cardinals. 
Now the Phillies are facing the Atlanta Braves in the best-of-five divisional round.

One can notice a big uptick of interest in the Phillies after their two-game sweep in St. Louis and a lot has to do with how it was done.
Philadelphia fans like their teams to have grit and passion (along with talent) and the Phillies showed all three in the series against St. Louis.

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No matter what would have happened in that series, the Phillies got many fans’ interest back with their opening 6-3 win over St. Louis.

The Phillies trailed 2-0 with one out and nobody on in the ninth inning and then exploded for six runs. The St. Louis fans, who many have labeled the best in baseball, were seen leaving the game before the Phillies finished their ninth-inning damage.

Entering that game, St. Louis was 93-0 while leading by two or more runs in the ninth inning of a postseason game.
Make that 93-1. 

The way the Phillies fought, while showing how much it meant to them, has made them the talk of the area (even with the Eagles being 5-0 and considered a major Super Bowl threat).

Then the Phillies sealed the win with a 2-0 victory in Game 2 as Aaron Nola continued his recent brilliance. Nola, who had a perfect game through six innings and allowed just two hits in 6 2/3 innings in the 3-0 win over Houston that clinched the wild card berth, was just as strong in his first postseason start.

Against St. Louis, he pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing just four hits while striking out six and walking one.
In the clincher, Bryce Harper gave the Phillies all the runs they would need with a towering second-inning home run. Harper has struggled since returning from a broken thumb, but that could get him going for the series against Atlanta.

Kyle Schwarber added a sacrifice fly. 
Zach Eflin who many felt would be out for the year with a knee injury, returned late in the season and has been a major bullpen contributor. He earned the save. 

Again, seeing how hard he worked to return, is something that makes him among the most popular Phillies.
The Philadelphia fan loves to heart and effort and this Phillies team showed that in the series win. Regardless of what happens against the defending World Series champion Braves, the Phillies reinvigorated interest in baseball.

With the Phillies having last played in the playoffs in 2011, fans may have forgotten how intense and exciting postseason baseball is, where there is drama on every pitch in any close game.
Photo courtesy Phillies twitter

Author: Marc Narducci


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