2020 MLB Season: Simulating NL games, June 5-7

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(Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)

In this 2020 MLB season sim, a 3-game sweep of the Braves puts Philly closer to first.

In three simple steps this weekend, the Philadelphia Phillies moved back into the simulated 2020 NL East race.

The Phillies rode pitching performances by three of their best to a sweep of the division-leading Atlanta Braves at Sun Trust, and in the process closed to within a half game of the division lead. It also means that as NL races settle more deeply into June, the largest margin in any of them is just one game.

When his team needed him the most, Jake Arrieta, 3-3, delivered his best performance of the season Friday, shutting out the Braves for eight innings on just two hits. Arrieta also drove in the game’s first run with a seventh-inning sacrifice fly that broke up a scoreless battle with Mike Soroka, 3-6.

Hector Neris picked up his 11th save of the season.

On Saturday, the Phillies broke a 1-1 tie with a four-run eighth inning off Max Fried, 8-3, and Shane Greene. The second of Scott Kingery’s two doubles, coming with the bases loaded, drove in three of those runs, Philadelphia winning 5-3 behind Zach Eflin, 7-3. Neris again picked up the save although this one was sloppy, the Braves putting the tying runs on base against him.

Related Story: 2020 MLB Season: Simulating AL games, June 5-7

Sunday’s series closer went 10 innings, but the result was no different. Rhys Hoskins, whose two-run home run in the fifth had tied the game at 2-2, produced a three-run shot off reliever Darren O’Day, 0-2, to win it 6-3.

In other weekend results, the Chicago Cubs took two of their final three games in Cincinnati, but the Cardinals lost twice in Pittsburgh and failed to pick up ground on the Reds. In the West, Arizona won two of three from San Diego and remained a half-game ahead of the Dodgers, who did the same against the Colorado Rockies. The Washington Nationals beat the New York Mets two of three.

In interleague play, the Seattle Mariners took two of three from the Miami Marlins in Miami, the Boston Red Sox swept the Milwaukee Brewers at Fenway, and the Athletics and Giants split a pair of games in Oakland.

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