HomeSportsMLB Playoffs: Phillies finish Braves behind JT Realmuto inside-the-park homer, Astros seek...

MLB Playoffs: Phillies finish Braves behind JT Realmuto inside-the-park homer, Astros seek sweep vs. Mariners

MLB’s 12-team postseason roster has already been reduced to eight contenders. Now the top two seeds of each league have joined the fray in the Division Series. After going straight to their ALDS and NLDS slots via byes, the Astros, Yankees, Dodgers and Braves take on challengers.

Some of those challengers prove more than worthy. In the National League, the front-runners Dodgers and Braves will both await the elimination on Saturday. The Phillies took a 2-1 series lead on Friday with a big win for their home fans. They will hand the ball to deadline trading the Noah Syndergaard takeover in a bid to upset the 101-winning Braves and October-tested Charlie Morton. Meanwhile, the Padres might be an even bigger surprise. A resurgent bullpen has helped San Diego frustrate the Dodgers — who have gone cold with runners in scoring position — and come within a game of the NLCS. Local resident Joe Musgrove, who wiped out the Mets in a memorable wildcard series, gets the ball against the Dodgers’ Tyler Anderson.

In the AL, the Astros look like the favorites they are. Yordan Alvarez’s huge home runs put them 2-0 ahead of the Mariners as the series heads to Seattle. Houston mainstay Lance McCullers Jr. will seek the ball to make up for missing the 2021 playoffs with an injury. Meanwhile, the Yankees and Guardians are a day behind after a rainstorm. Tied at 1-1, that will shift ALDS to Cleveland with the upper hand on the line. Luis Severino of the Yankees takes on Cleveland No. 2 Triston McKenzie. Here’s the full list:

Game 4: Braves (Morton) at Phillies (Syndergaard) – 2:07 PM, FS1

Game 3: Astros (McCullers Jr.) at Mariners (Kirby) – 4:07 PM, TBS

Game 3: Yankees (Severino) at Guardians (McKenzie) – 7:37 PM, TBS

Game 4: Dodgers (Anderson) at Padres (Musgrove) – 9:37 PM, FS1

[Full updated MLB playoff TV schedule]

Follow all the action live on Yahoo Sports.

Phillies Wax Braves in Game 4, Advance to NLCS

The last team in the postseason is the first team in the Championship Series. The Philadelphia Phillies defeated the defending World Series champion Atlanta Braves 8-3 in Game 4 to win the NLDS and advance. The No. 6-seeded Phillies destroy the No. 2 seeded Braves in the first full season in which MLB’s playoff format allows six teams from each league. The Phillies finished 14 games behind the Braves in the regular season.

However, all that doesn’t matter now. Under manager Rob Thomson – who took over from Joe Girardi in June – the Phillies are 70-47, including their burst of success to start this postseason. They eliminated the NL Central champion St. Louis Cardinals and now the NL East champion Braves.

The Phillies put the Braves in charge again with an early homerun. This one came from mid-season trade takeover Brandon Marsh, whose three-point shot in the second opened the score. In the third, JT Realmuto placed an exclamation point on the early wave with an inside-the-park home run. Bryce Harper ended it with a homer in the eighth inning – his third of the postseason.

Atlanta can look back on this series as an unfortunate string of compromised pitching performances. In the three games she lost, Max Fried was ill, Spencer Stride lost back from an oblique injury in his first game, and Charlie Morton left after being hit by a comebacker. It doesn’t change the fact that the Phillies jumped in and gave up hits against both starters and relievers.

After a great start from ace Aaron Nola in Game 3, the Phillies switched to a bullpen-focused approach in Game 4. Noah Syndergaard put out three innings, then passed it to a total of five assist arms to finish the game and the series Close .

No matter who wins the Dodgers-Padres series, the Phillies will travel from Tuesday to meet them for Game 1 of the NLCS.

Want to catch up on October’s main storylines? We’ve got you covered.

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