PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - AUGUST 9: Michael Lorenzen #22 of the Philadelphia Phillies celebrates with J.T. Realmuto #10 after throwing a no-hitter against the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on August 9, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies defeated the Nationals 7-0.

This Phillies season has been a magical, even if at times stressful, run. After sneaking into the playoffs last year, just to go all the way to the World Series, they decided to make things a bit easier on themselves this time around. They are already at 89 wins, with 4 more games to go. And they already have clinched the Top Wild Card, meaning they get to start the playoffs playing at home.

Things have not all been easy. They once again started slow and needed to be on a 102-win pace over the last 4 months to get to about 90 wins. A lot of their Superstars struggled to start the season. Between Kyle Schwarber’s batting average being in the gutters, Trea Turner having the worst season of his career, and Bryce Harper having a prolonged power drought coming off major off-season surgery, the start of the season was not easy. They made us sweat as much as they made us cheer. But in the end, it was all worth it. Because after 11 straight years without a Red October, we now get two in a row. And it is to be determined if they can treat us to a World Series run like they did last year.

But before we can get to the playoffs, let’s look back on how we got here. We don’t need to live back through those low moments because right now is just about celebrating being in the playoffs. But let’s revisit some of the great moments of this regular season. The Walk-Offs, the milestones, the historic accomplishments. Those moments that made us remember how fun this team was to root for in the playoffs last year.

Here are 13 of the best moments from this Phillies season. Why 13 moments? Because that is the number of wins they need in the playoffs until we get a parade.

 

  • Bryce Harper Returns Early

    We were told Harper wouldn’t return until maybe the All-Star Break. Then it started to sound like he could be back before the end of May. Lo and behold, he was back as a DH at the start of May. That type of turnaround off of Tommy John surgery, in November, is insane. Yes, it took him a while to really get going. He didn’t find his power until August. But just him taking an at-bat on May 2nd was cool enough to crack this list. It is the fastest anyone has ever returned after Tommy John surgery.

  • Stott Walks It Off vs the Reds

    The first two months did not have a ton to cheer for. But Stott, Marsh, and Bohm helping fuel a rally to erase a 2-0 deficit to the Reds back in April was awesome, and a sign of things to come. It was the first time we realized that those young guys could actually be a super important part of this team, after being mostly quiet in the playoffs last year. They carried the team for much of this season while the veterans seemed to struggle. And rallying to win it against the Reds was the first of many great moments spurred by The Daycare.

  • A Hungover Garrett Stubbs Hits a 3-Run Blast

    Stubbs has had a tough year at the plate. He has barely played, but when he did, he did not do much damage at the plate. Apparently, the problem was he was not playing with a hangover. Because the night after the team celebrated clinching, and we all saw him partying harder than anyone, he went yard for the first time all season. Teams aren’t supposed to win the Hangover game the next day. They are supposed to empty the bench, look sluggish, and lose because it doesn’t matter. But seeing them come back from down 5-0 thanks to a 3-run bomb by Stubbs, was fun.

  • Bryce Harper Hits His 300th Homerun

    This moment got a bit spoiled after the fact. But when Harper hit his 300th HR, to put the Phillies ahead in the bottom of the 8th against the Angels, you could probably hear the Phillies faithful from miles away. Unfortunately, it was followed up with a blown save, and a loss. But the moment was still unbelievable. And it makes sense that Harper, the most clutch player ever, would hit number 300 in such a big moment to put his team ahead late in the game.

  • Orion Kerkering Shows Up To Save The Bullpen

    Only one player has ever pitched in Single-A, High-A, AA, AAA, a regular season MLB game, and a postseason game. That was Jose Contreras, who was 31 at the time. Orion Kerkering is about to become the 2nd, at 22 years of age. And his debut was special. He flashed both his 100-mph fastball and a nasty slider, striking out 2 of the 3 hitters he faced. And with how badly the Phillies need bullpen help, they definitely could use someone with stuff like Kerkering has. His dad being there for his debut, and getting emotional in the stands, makes it even cooler.

    MLB on Twitter: "When your son, Orion Kerkering, makes his MLB debut and gets two strikeouts ... there IS crying in baseball. 🥹 pic.twitter.com/7DFhixpcmb / Twitter"

    When your son, Orion Kerkering, makes his MLB debut and gets two strikeouts ... there IS crying in baseball. 🥹 pic.twitter.com/7DFhixpcmb

  • JT Realmuto Hits For The Cycle

    It had been nearly 20 seasons since a Phillies play hit for the cycle. That changed this year when JT Realmuto hit one in Arizona vs the D-Backs. He became just the 9th player in Phillies history to accomplish the feat. Unfortunately like with Harper’s 300th HR, it came in a game where the Phillies blew a lead and lost.

    MLB on Twitter: "J.T. Realmuto is the 17th catcher in baseball history to hit for the cycle! pic.twitter.com/Q66HnGqW4K / Twitter"

    J.T. Realmuto is the 17th catcher in baseball history to hit for the cycle! pic.twitter.com/Q66HnGqW4K

  • Trea Turner Walks It Off Vs the Giants

    When the Giants came into town in August, both teams were grappling for Wild Card Positioning. The Phillies needed to win the series. And that they did. Thanks in large part to this hit by Trea Turner. They were down 3-2 in the bottom of the 9th. The bases were loaded. And Turner smoked the ball. It went off the pitcher’s glove, and trickled into the outfield, letting Marsh score from 2nd to win the game. It was a badly needed win, and the Phillies never really looked back from it.

  • Harper's Inside The Park HR

    I am always a sucker for an Inside the Park HR. It is the ultimate hustle play. And that wall that juts out in Centerfield of Citizens Bank Park is the perfect place to hit an inside the parker off of. We saw Utley do it back in the day. JT did it in the playoffs last year. And Harper got one this year. The only thing that made it cooler was Harper’s celebration afterward. And don’t give me that nonsense of it being a triple and an error. No one likes the fun police, looking at you Ricky Bo.

  • Craig Kimbrel Gets His 400th Save

    It has been a season for guys to hit milestones with the Phillies. And that includes Craig Kimbrel who got his 400th save with the Phillies earlier this year. He even got to do it while playing the Braves, where he spent most of his career, in front of his family. Kimbrel’s time here has not been perfect, but him in the bullpen kind of kept this team afloat at times. He is struggling now, but who knows where they would be if the bullpen wasn’t so dominant in the first half of the season.

    MLB on Twitter: "Craig Kimbrel's 400th save secures a big win for the @Phillies. pic.twitter.com/llxLeK3v01 / Twitter"

    Craig Kimbrel's 400th save secures a big win for the @Phillies. pic.twitter.com/llxLeK3v01

  • Schwarber Proves Thomson Right For Leading Him Off

    This one is for all you people who hate Schwarber leading off. You do it because then he gets more at-bats, and a chance to have that extra at-bat at the end of a game. He came up in the bottom of the 9th, with two outs vs. the Dodgers in June. With one swing, he ended the game. It capped off a 6-game winning streak to open up the month of June. if he wasn’t leading off, he may have never had an at-bat there, and they may have lost. Instead, he was the hitter and won the game for them.

  • Michael Lorenzen's No Hitter

    Lorenzen has struggled since he threw this no-hitter. But we will always have that special game when he gave up no hits to the Nationals. It was the 14th no-hitter in Phillies history, and the first since Cole Hamels threw a no-hitter in his final game with the Phillies. It also helped in that same game Nick Castellanos hit his 200th HR, and Weston Wilson hit his first career HR in his first at-bat in the Majors. Not to mention we got shots of Lorenzen’s mom getting emotional, Wilson’s dad tearing up, and Castellanos’s son celebrating. It was a flawless night and one of the coolest regular season games in Phillies history.

  • Trea Turner Rewards Fans For Standing Ovation

    Trea Turner was having the worst season of his career. But then something weird happened. Fans gave him a standing ovation, despite his poor play. As if to say, we’ve got you Trea, you will figure it out. And figure it out he did. He went from one of the worst hitters in the league to one of the best. And on the second day of those standing ovations, he went yard. Then he kept going yard. To the point, he almost got to 30 on the season, despite the poor start. That weekend of Standing Ovations is something neither Trea nor the fans, will ever forget.

  • The Phillies Clinch

    And of course, the actual moment they clinched the playoffs had to be on the list. The fact the game was so close was annoying at the time. But it did make for a better moment. To have a young guy like Johan Rojas come up, and deliver in that moment, it is almost worth the stress of seeing Craig Kimbrel blow the lead. The young guys like Bryson Stott, Brandon Marsh, and Alec Bohm have made a name for themselves in coming up clutch, and now we can add Rojas to that group.

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