Cristian Pache hits walk-off single to lift Phillies over Rockies in extras

Scott Lauber, The Philadelphia Inquirer on

Published in Baseball

PHILADELPHIA — Like a linebacker at the goal line, Jeff Hoffman lowered his right shoulder — his pitching shoulder — and blocked home plate.

That’s what it took for the punchless Phillies to win Monday night.

With two outs in the ninth inning of a tie game against the struggling Rockies, Hoffman skipped a slider in the dirt that got away from catcher J.T. Realmuto. The reliever raced to the plate, where he caught the ball at the same time that pinch-running Colorado pitcher Kyle Freeland arrived.

After a thunderous collision that left Freeland holding his arm, a lengthy replay review, and an upheld call on the field, the game remained tied. The Phillies were out of the inning. Barely.

It took a 10th inning and the automatic runner on second base, but the Phillies finally eked out a 2-1 victory when Cristian Pache punched a two-out single through the drawn-in infield to score Bryson Stott. IT capped another otherwise frustrating night for an offense that hasn’t found its footing through nearly three weeks of the season.

Pache’s hit prevented the Phillies from wasting another stellar start. This time, Aaron Nola twirled a 7⅓-inning, 99-pitch gem, allowing little more than Michael Toglia’s solo homer in the fifth inning.


Entering the game, the Phillies ranked among the bottom half of the 15-team National League in most offensive categories, including homers (ninth), hits (11th), on-base percentage (13th), and slugging (14th).

Worst of all, they scored the second-fewest runs.

The elixir, surely, would be the 4-13 Rockies — specifically against righty Cal Quantrill, who dragged a 7.20 ERA to the mound after giving up 12 runs in his last three starts.

But Quantrill held the Phillies to four hits in six innings. He allowed one run on Trea Turner’s double inside the third-base bag and down the left-field line, leading to a two-out RBI worm-burner up the middle by Bryce Harper.


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