June 26, 2023
On a day where a loss would've given the Phillies a disastrous week against their bitterest rivals, Trea Turner stepped up and played like the $300 million man that he is.
With rain plaguing Philadelphia on and off all week, the Phillies lost two games to Atlanta at home and then split a Friday and Saturday set against the Mets. After a torrid pace that has the city buzzing with a hole in the sports scene, back-to-back series losses to NL East foes would've wiped out all those good vibes.
Turner wasn't having any of that, so I'm giving the honor of the figure who "won the week" in Philly sports, my recurring Monday feature here at PhillyVoice.
In the first inning on Sunday's rubber match with New York, Turner went yard, crushing a ball 400-plus feet over the centerfield wall:
After the Mets took a lead in the third, Turner answered again, singling home Edmundo Sosa to tie things up. Clutch. As much as starter Zack Wheeler seemingly wanted to give this game away, Turner kept on playing like the versatile star he's been his whole career.
He showed off his wheels in the fifth inning. With the Phillies in a 4-2 hole, Turner stole second base. He then stole third, too, but the throw from Mets catcher Omar Narváez sailed into left field, leaving Turner to dart home as the Citizens Bank Park crowd yelped into a frenzy.
Then came the typical Mets meltdown, a collapse of epic proportions even for that franchise's sorry history. It was more delicious than a twist ice cream helmet for Phillies fans. With the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth inning and the Phillies trailing 6-4, Mets righty reliever Jeff Brigham walked home a run, hit Kyle Schwarber with a pitch to send another run home and then did the exact same thing to Turner:
That whole sequence reminded me of Howie in "The Benchwarmers" taking one for the team for a win:
On the week as a whole, Turner had an OPS of .866 in five games. For comparison's sake, he had an OPS of .809 in his 2022 All-Star campaign in L.A. That .866 mark is well above his season-long OPS of .693 as well. Just as the Phillies need to capitalize on a game they probably shouldn't have won and continue to make a playoff push, this needs to be the turning point in Turner's season as he gives some pop, racks up steals and simply makes winning plays.
Schwarber is not in his "SchwarberFest" June form currently. If he's not belting homers, he's nauseating to watch. In five games, he hit .100 (not a typo!) with an OPS of .317 (nor is this a typo!) while making a defensive gaff in Thursday's loss that nixed any chance of an extra-innings win for the Phils.
As our own Evan Macy wrote on Monday morning, the Phillies have a leadoff problem.
Who Won the Week 2023 Tally:
Joel Embiid: 5
James Harden: 3
Bryson Stott: 2
Trea Turner: 1
Kyle Schwarber: 1
Nick Castellanos: 1
Phillies bench: 1
Howie Roseman: 1
Tobias Harris: 1
Mac McClung: 1
Haason Reddick: 1
Kenny Gainwell: 1
DeVonta Smith: 1
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