Back-to-back home runs lift Phillies over Brewers, 4-2, to snap three-game skid

Tribune Content Agency

MILWAUKEE — The seminal moment of Alec Bohm’s 2022 season came in this ballpark, against this team. It was early June. He had settled in as an everyday player for the Phillies, though not like he is now, when he banged a game-tying home run against then-untouchable Brewers closer Josh Hader.

Maybe you remember it. Bohm surely does.

Fifteen months later, on a hot September Sunday, Bohm found his old Milwaukee magic. And what it lacked in ninth-inning drama, it made up for as a much-needed pick-me-up, both for him and the Phillies.

Bohm led off the seventh inning with a laser-beam home run into the Brewers’ bullpen at American Family Field. It tied the game, preceded J.T. Realmuto’s go-ahead homer, and started the Phillies to a sweep-averting 4-2 victory. They broke a three-game losing skid and maintained a 2½-game lead for the top spot an ever-tightening National League wild-card race.

Oh, and it counterbalanced Bohm’s costly error Friday night in the series-opening loss.

Not to re-live it, but in case you missed it, Bohm tried to backhand a routine grounder with the bases loaded in the eighth inning. He flubbed it, enabling three runs to score in the Brewers’ 7-5 victory.

After the game, manager Rob Thomson expressed confidence that Bohm wouldn’t let it shake his confidence. In past seasons, maybe it would have. But the Phillies believe Bohm has matured enough to not let such misplays linger.

Just in case, though, Bohm got a pep talk Saturday from infield coach Bobby Dickerson. He played a flawless third base, then moved across the diamond to first base for the series finale. His defense, at both positions, has been much improved this season.

And when the Phillies needed a big swing, he came through.

The Phillies didn’t have a hit against Brewers lefty Wade Miley until the sixth inning, when Trea Turner’s hard chopper went off third baseman Andruw Monasterio’s glove. Nick Castellanos followed with an RBI double to slice the Brewers’ lead to 2-1.

Bohm led off the seventh inning, and although it was clear off the bat that he scorched Miley’s changeup, it didn’t look like he lifted it enough to get out of the ballpark. But the low liner zoomed over the fence in left-center, leaving Miley talking to himself as he retrieved a new ball.

Two pitches later, Realmuto crushed a cutter off the batter’s eye in center field, and the homer-happy Phillies had the lead.

It marked the Phillies’ 16th consecutive game with a homer, tied for the second-longest streak in franchise history. The 2008 team homered in 18 consecutive games from Sept. 3-22.

A deeper cut

Bohm wasn’t the only Phillies player to gain a slice of redemption.

After straying from his cutter Friday night en route to allowing two hits and two walks, reliever José Alvarado led with the pitch and tossed a scoreless eighth inning. Alvarado threw 12 cutters out of 17 pitches, using it to strike out Tyrone Taylor and Monasterios.

Craig Kimbrel, meanwhile, locked down a save with a scoreless ninth inning in his first appearance since giving up a go-ahead two-run homer to the Angels’ Brandon Drury last Wednesday at Citizens Bank Park.