It didn't matter if they were good pitches or meatballs — the Philadelphia Phillies were hitting all types of pitches deep and far tonight. This ended up being a rough night at the office for the Atlanta Braves as they got blown away by Philadelphia's exhibition of power in a 7-1 defeat.
The start of this game was encouraging enough, as Ozzie Albies wasted no time giving Zack Wheeler a bit of a rude welcome to Atlanta as he absolutely crushed a pitch and sent it into the Chop House to give the Braves an early 1-0 lead. While Ozzie's career-high 31st homer of the season was the only hit of the inning for Atlanta, it still felt like this was going to be a good omen for the future of this game when you considered that the Braves had just got done hitting three dingers off of Wheeler a week ago.
Instead, it was an omen for how the rest of the night would go for the Phillies. Philadelphia proceeded to score runs in four of the next five innings and all of those runs came via the long ball. The first homer came in the second inning from Johan Rojas taking a pitch that was high and outside and somehow poking it into the seats in the opposite-field Chop House for a two-run shot that gave the Phillies the lead. The second homer came an inning later, which is when Bryce Harper made his presence felt by taking a pitch that was also outside of the strike zone and he pushed it into the seats in left-center for another oppo shot that made it 3-1 Philly.
You could argue that Kyle Wright just suffered from some bad luck since the pitches that left the yard weren't bad by any means. That absolutely was not the case for the next homer that Wright gave up in the fourth inning, as Kyle threw J.T. Realmuto a sinker that did not sink and instead lingered inside of the strike zone. Realmuto made no mistake with it and hit a moonshot into the Hank Aaron Terrace in left field for another solo homer.
His homer made it 4-1 in favor of Philadelphia and that also ended up being the final homer that Kyle Wright gave up tonight. Wright got through the fourth inning without further incident and was put out there for the fifth inning before an incredibly lucky infield single for Trea Turner and a five-pitch walk to Bryce Harper ended up pushing him out of the game after 78 pitches.
Michael Tonkin came on and cleaned up the mess but the home run barrage for Philadelphia resumed in the sixth inning. Nick Castellanos led off the inning by smacking a hanger about seven or eight rows deep into the seats in left center. It was an admittedly impressive solo shot but it was nothing compared to the bomb that Kyle Schwarber unleashed later on in that frame. Tonkin walked Brandon Marsh after the Castellanos homer and with one out, Schwarber came to the plate and was treated with yet another hanger from Tonkin. Schwarber got every last stitch of it and nearly hit it all the way to H&F Burger near the right field gate entrance to Truist Park. It was an absolutely mammoth shot.
While this was all going on, Zack Wheeler had completely shut down Atlanta's offense and was cruising through the middle portion of the game. It wasn't until the sixth inning when Atlanta's offense finally returned to life after Ronald Acuña Jr. hit a gapper with one out to get into scoring position. Austin Riley joined him on base with a two-out walk and then Matt Olson legged out an infield single (it was ruled so after the call on the field was challenged but !!!) to load the bases. Unfortunately, Marcell Ozuna came up to bat and Zack Wheeler clamped down and got Ozuna to chase for a swinging third strike to end the scoring threat right there.
Wheeler's night ended after that frame but the struggles at the plate continued for the Braves, as Philadelphia's bullpen proceeded to shut down Atlanta for the rest of the game. Mercifully, the rest of Atlanta's bullpen was able to keep the Phillies quiet after Kyle Schwarber hit that showstopper of a home run in the sixth inning.
Needless to say, this was a forgettable night for a lot of the Braves players — even though Ozzie setting a new career high in home runs was a nice highlight. The Braves will have to go back to the drawing board ahead of tomorrow night's game at 7:20 P.M. E.T., as they look to snap this losing streak that's suddenly hit them following their confirmation of the 2023 NL East Divisional title.