Jake Arrieta made his best start in a long time and the bottom of the Phillies’ order showed up again with a late-game rally in a 5-3 road win Friday over the Mets.
Arrieta allowed two runs in seven innings on a homer from Michael Conforto but cruised for much of the night. It was the first time in 20 starts that he completed seven innings.
He gave up a two-run lead but was made a winner thanks to the bottom of the Phillies’ order. Starting for Bryce Harper and batting eighth, Phil Gosselin doubled and scored on a single by 9-hole hitter Roman Quinn in the top of the seventh.
In the last 21 days, Quinn has helped the Phillies win three different games late with his speed, his defense and now a clutch hit.
In the eighth, the Phillies did what good teams do and that’s add insurance with two singles, two walks and a bases-loaded hit by pitch. It proved valuable with Hector Neris’ shaky eighth inning (two hits, walk, run).
Rhys Hoskins made a game-saving defensive play in the eighth, a diving catch on a line drive from Todd Frazier that otherwise would have been a two-run double.
The Phillies have won 10 of 11 games for the first time since 2011. They’re 19-15 on the season. They’ve gone 10-0 against the Nationals and Mets.
They are 2½ games ahead of the Marlins for second place in the NL East, which is a playoff spot this year.
A night Arrieta needed
Arrieta rebounded nicely after the shortest outing of his major-league career.
He began the night with four scoreless innings. He stranded two runners in the fourth by striking out Jeff McNeil. McNeil has been on fire this week but did not look comfortable in that at-bat.
The pitch Arrieta paid for was a 90 mph sinker that caught too much plate against Conforto, who crushed it to left-center to tie things in the fifth.
He bounced back from that to end the inning and faced the minimum in the sixth and seventh.
Arrieta has made seven starts. Three have been good, three have been bad, one has been OK. He has a 5.67 ERA.
Workman’s best work so far
Brandon Workman made his cleanest appearance as a Phillie with a 1-2-3 inning for his fifth save. He had allowed multiple baserunners in all seven prior appearances with the Phils but stranded 14 of the 18 runners.
Bohm settling in defensively
Since committing multiple errors in one inning on August 21 in Atlanta, rookie third baseman Alec Bohm has converted all 27 plays his way.
Rare night off for Harper
Bryce Harper, who had played 32 of the Phillies’ 33 games through Friday, was given the night off by manager Joe Girardi. It was Girardi’s decision and he said a few hours before game-time that Harper “probably isn’t real happy with me.”
Harper is 7 for his last 45 and his batting average has dropped 91 points in two weeks. He’s remained a valuable player for the Phillies with his defense and baserunning, and he’s gotten on base at a .365 clip despite a .156 batting average during his slump.
Harper isn’t the only slumping Phillie. J.T. Realmuto has hit .211 in his last 16 games.
Upcoming pitching plans
Things are about to get weird in the Phillies’ rotation. They have three doubleheaders next week and the need for seven starters during this 10-day stretch. More here on how the rotation could be aligned.
Spencer Howard, Aaron Nola and Zack Wheeler will pitch the next three games in this Phillies-Mets series. Sunday afternoon will be Nola vs. Jacob deGrom.