After the Braves fought back from a 4-0 deficit, Braves centerfielder Michael Harris II and infielder Austin Riley sealed the win with their gloves. Photo Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports Oct 9, 2023; Cumberland, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Braves center fielder Michael Harris II (23) makes a catch at the wall for an out during the ninth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies in game two of the NLDS for the 2023 MLB playoffs at Truist Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Trailing 4-0 to the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 2 of the National League Division Series and on the brink of falling behind 0-2, the Atlanta Braves showed why they were baseball’s best team during the season. The offense found its form and gave the Braves a 5-4 lead heading into the ninth inning. The lead was preserved thanks to an awesome effort on defense.

Philadelphia’s Bryce Harper drew a leadoff walk in the top of the ninth inning. Then, after J. T. Realmuto flew out, Nick Castellanos came to the plate. Castellanos hit the ball to deep right-center field. And while it was quickly apparent that the ball would not be a home run, it looked like it could be a game-tying double or triple. But Atlanta centerfielder Michael Harris II had other ideas. He tracked the ball down and made a jumping catch into the wall. And that was only part of the play.

Harper clearly thought that the ball would not be caught, as he was well off of first base. Harris quickly threw in, hoping to force a double play. His throw, though, sailed away from cut-off man Ozzie Albies and shortstop Orlando Arcia, who was backing Albies up, couldn’t corral the ball. Third baseman Austin Riley, though, was in perfect position. He scooped up the ball and fired it onto first baseman Matt Olson. completing the game-ending double play.

Harris, naturally, was excited about the play.

He was not alone. Harris’ teammates and baseball fans alike marveled at the tremendous game-ending twin killing.

In addition to making the heads-up play, Riley was also one of Atlanta’s offensive heroes. The Braves trimmed the 4-0 deficit to 4-3 by the eighth inning. Riley put Atlanta on top with a two-run home run.

The Braves still need to win one in Philadelphia to guarantee a return to Atlanta. But things look a lot better for them now than did for most of Game 2.

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