Boston, MA - Every great Boston Red Sox season has a signature victory. In 2004, it came in the game when Jason Varitek punched out Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees. In 2013, it came in a post Boston Marathon victory that featured a home run from Daniel Nava. In 2007, it was the Mother's Day Miracle when Boston rallied for five runs in the ninth inning to beat the Baltimore Orioles.
In 2018, that victory has a lot in common with 2007's come from behind feat. With September call-ups well under way, Alex Cora trotted out an unconventional lineup in Wednesday's game against the Atlanta Braves, as it featured Jackie Bradley, Jr. leading off and Blake Swihart and Brock Holt in prominent lineup positions. He also gave the start to Brandon Phillips, a minor league signing earlier in the season, but the former All-Star became the hero of the game.
Boston fell behind quickly due to poor pitching performances from starter Hector Velazquez and reliever Drew Pomeranz. Going into the eighth inning, Boston was down 7-1, their lone score coming from a Holt sacrifice play to score Phillips.
Everything flipped in the eighth, though, and Boston continued their pattern of come from behind victories thanks to late inning heroics. It started with a double from Swihart to score Christian Vazquez and Tzu-Wei Lin. Next, Andrew Benintendi singled to score Bradley as the Sox continued to take advantage of an Atlanta pitching staff that was not warmed up enough to be properly prepared for the comeback.
The score now 7-4, Boston wound up tying the game off of a sacrifice fly from Steve Pearce and a single from Ian Kinsler, who has been extremely hot on offense lately.
A home run in the bottom of the eighth from Freddie Freeman off of Brandon Workman brought Boston fans back down to earth, though. It was in the ninth inning with two outs when Boston exemplified their never say die mentality (MLB teams were 0-487 when down six runs or more in the eighth inning until yesterday) to create the game of the year as Brandon Phillips smacked a home run with Benintendi on base to give Boston the lead and the win.
And no, it's not too late for Phillips to be added to the postseason roster if the time comes.