The 2022 season is over for the Atlanta Braves after an 8-3 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 4 of the NLDS.
After the Braves went down in order to start the game, Charlie Morton found himself in trouble right away. Kyle Schwarber walked to get things started and then moved all the way to third on a single by Rhys Hoskins. Morton came back and struck out J.T. Realmuto looking and then got Bryce Harper swinging. Nick Castellanos then flew out for the final out the Braves dodged a huge bullet in the first.
Noah Syndergaard retired the side in order again in the second and Morton again found himself in hot water. Alec Bohm lined a single off of his pitching elbow for an infield single. The trainers came out to check on Morton and the Braves bullpen got busy, but he stayed in the game and struck out Bryson Stott for the first out. Jean Segura followed with a hard hit single to left to put runners at the corners again. Morton then jumped ahead of Brandon Marsh 1-2, but left a curveball out over the plate that Marsh drove into the stands in right for a three-run home run. Morton retired Schwarber and Hoskins to end the inning, but Atlanta was now facing an uphill battle.
The Braves got one of the runs back in the third as Orlando Arcia took Syndergaard deep to left to cut the deficit to 3-1.
Ar-SEE YA!— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 15, 2022
A solo shot gets the @Braves on the board!
: FS1 and the FOX Sports App pic.twitter.com/4OHCrok5O1
Morton came back out to warm up to start the third, but the Braves’ training staff must have seen something as they came back out, along with manager Brian Snitker, to check on him. After a brief discussion, he came out and Collin McHugh was summoned from the bullpen.
Morton allowed four hits, three runs and a walk in two innings. He struck out three while throwing 43 pitches.
"I just put the eye test to it, and I didn't like the way warm ups was going."— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 15, 2022
Brian Snitker tells @ken_rosenthal why he decided to take Charlie Morton out of the game: pic.twitter.com/JUpvoATMoy
The bad breaks continued to come for Atlanta as Realmuto drove the third pitch he saw from McHugh off the wall in center just over the glove of Michael Harris. The ball ricocheted back towards right field and Realmuto just kept running all the way around the bases for an inside the park home run to make it 4-1.
JT REALMUTO INSIDE THE PARKER! pic.twitter.com/FqZuqPq0jU— Just Baseball (@JustBBMedia) October 15, 2022
McHugh retired the next three hitters in order, but Atlanta again was down three runs.
Andrew Bellatti took over on the mound for the Phillies in the fourth. Dansby Swanson flew out for the first out, but Matt Olson connected on a solo home run to right to cut the lead to 4-2.
Matt Olson's monster NLDS continues.— Bally Sports: Braves (@BravesOnBally) October 15, 2022
Solo shot for the @Braves star. pic.twitter.com/7ww8cOQkL3
Bellatti recovered and struck out d’Arnaud and Riley to end the inning without any further damage.
McHugh came back out for the fourth and allowed a single to Stott to lead off the inning. After a pop out by Segura, Brandon Marsh dropped a double to right that fell in between Acuña and Harris. Acuña appeared to pull up on the play on a ball that has to be caught. The Braves then opted to intentionally walk Schwarber to load the bases and McHugh got Hoskins to fly out to shallow right for the second out. McHugh then came up big as he got Realmuto to chase a breaking ball off the plate for the final out of the inning.
The Phillies went to lefty Brad Hand in the fifth and he struck out Harris on an ugly swing to start the inning. Contreras struck out for the second out, before Arcia singled to left. The Braves then opted to leave Eddie Rosario in for a rare at-bat against a left-hander and he lifted the first pitch to Marsh in center to end the inning.
A.J. Minter replaced McHugh in the fifth and struck out Harper and Castellanos to begin the inning. Bohm grounded out to third to send the game to the sixth.
AJ Minter's 2Ks in the 5th. pic.twitter.com/x9IwLGaxkC— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) October 15, 2022
Minter stayed in for the sixth and struck out Stott before allowing a single to Segura. With Marsh at the plate, Segura stole second, but Marsh was called out on strikes. Minter then hit Schwarber in the hand with a 2-2 pitch. The Braves challenged, but the call was upheld by replay. Snitker would then summon Raisel Iglesias from the pen to face Hoskins who dumped a single to right on a 1-2 pitch that scored Segura to make it 5-2.
Things only got worse from there as Realmuto then hit a slow roller up the third base line and beat out Riley’s barehand throw. Schwarber scored on the play to extend the lead to 6-2. Harper guided one through the left side to score Hoskins to make it 7-2. Iglesias then lost Castellanos to load the bases, but Bohm lined out to Swanson at short to bring the inning to a merciful end.
In a microcosm of the series, five straight Phillies hitters reached base with two outs and three runs scored.
The Braves went down in order in the sixth against Jose Alvarado who stayed in to start the seventh and allowed a solo home run to d’Arnaud to make it 7-3.
It's gone! Travis d'Arnaud with a solo shot— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 15, 2022
: FS1 and the FOX Sports App pic.twitter.com/t8KrlsQec4
Zach Eflin got the final out of the seventh and then retired the side in order in the eighth. The Phillies added another run in the eighth when Harper took Kenley Jansen deep to make it 8-3.
Seranthony Dominguez took over in the ninth and struck out Dansby Swanson in what could be his final at-bat in a Braves uniform. Dominguez then struck out Olson and d’Arnaud to end the game and the series.