PITTSBURGH – Nick Williams reached for third base with both hands on Saturday afternoon, knowing full well that the final out of the seventh inning was waiting in Colin Moran's mitt.
So Williams, in the midst of a headfirst slide, rotated his body like a breakdancer. He spun his body, kicked his legs toward the outfield, held his breath, and did whatever else it took to avoid the third baseman's tag. Williams was safe, a run scored, and the inning the Phillies needed to rally for a 3-2 win could continue.
A day after scoring 17 runs, the Phillies looked listless on Saturday until they had two outs in the seventh inning. Pirates starter Jameson Taillon had mesmerized the Phils for much of the day. And then Williams ripped a triple to right field to bring home Carlos Santana. Williams' contortion at third allowed Scott Kingery to slap a game-tying single up the middle. Jorge Alfaro rocketed a go-ahead double and Kingery sprinted home from first.
Alfaro tried to test his luck and was caught in an inning-ending run down between second and third. But it was forgivable as the Phillies, in a wild turn of events, suddenly had a lead.
The inning propelled the Phillies to their sixth-straight win. They will wake up Sunday for the second-straight day in first place. The Phillies have won eight of their last nine and could complete their first-ever sweep in 18 trips to PNC Park.