This is the Phillies’ first pennant win since 2009.
Bryce Harper wasn’t going back to San Diego.
The defending NL MVP blasted the pennant-winning two-run homer to send the Philadelphia Phillies into their first World Series since 2009.
To secure their place in the Fall Classic, the Phillies defeated the San Diego Padres by four games to 1.
Harper hit a home run on a 2-2 pitch following J.T. Realmuto started the inning with a single and the Phillies were down one run. This blast gave the Phillies a 4-3 lead and ultimately, the win.
In the ninth, the Padres defeated David Robertson and put the tie-breaking run on second base and the go ahead run on first. Rob Thomson was forced to follow Ranger Suarez, the starter, for the final two outs. Trent Grisham sacrificed runners on his first pitch. But Austin Nola, brother of the Phillies’ pitcher Aaron, flied out at Nick Castellanos for the final out.
Both the first and second innings saw the Phillies make a double play, but they were able to take advantage of a man on the first pitch. Philadelphia took a 2-0 lead when Rhys Hoskins hit his fourth home run in the NLCS.
Juan Soto responded in the fourth with a single shot. Zack Wheeler, however, was on the money. Jake Cronenworth started the seventh inning off with a single. This ended Wheeler’s day, perhaps a little too quickly. But he still threw another postseason gem. He tossed six innings of three-hit baseball, walking none and striking out 8.
Seranthony Dominguez, the first man to come out of the pen was Josh Bell. However, he threw an unusual pitch to tie the game at two. Josh Bell doubled to the right-center fielder on his next pitch to tie the game at 2. Dominguez threw another wild pitch to score Jose Azocar, pinch runner. San Diego took a 3-2 lead with three wild pitches and a second.
Citizens Bank Park was shocked by Harper’s answer and didn’t take a seat for the remainder of the contest. They won’t be able to sit down for a while.
The Phillies were the sixth seed in National League. Before the season began, MLB created a 12-team postseason. Six teams from each league participated. The Phillies would have planned golf trips any other year.
They now appear like a team of destiny.
They will wait for the ALCS winner – most likely the Houston Astros who have won three of their last four games.