When Kody Clemens was recalled from Triple A after Trea Turner was injured a couple weeks ago, Bryce Harper gave him a couple of his bats to use.

Clemens had ordered the same model as Harper – it’s a Victus bat – but while waiting for a new shipment to arrive, Clemens was gifted some by his teammate.

Back on May 7th, in his first swing with the new bat, Clemens hit a home run into the right field seats against the Toronto Blue Jays.

We now know it was a sign of things to come.

Stepping to the plate with two outs in the bottom of the ninth Saturday against Washington, Clemens, with Harper’s bat still in his hands, slugged a game-tying home run to the first row of the right centerfield seats, sending the sellout crowd at Citizens Bank Park into a frenzy.

An inning later, Harper would hit a walk off sacrifice fly as the Phillies won, again, 4-3 in 10 innings, matching their best start in franchise history (1976, 1993) by improving their record to 33-14.

Since using Harper’s bat, Clemens has been clutch for the Phillies. He has a 1.038 OPS in eight games since being recalled, and has three extra-base hits, mostly being used as a pinch hitter or in-game substitute once a righty reliever is on the mound.

“It’s knowing the lineup and seeing when guys I would pinch hit for are coming up in certain scenarios, and then you see a right-handed pitcher start warming up, you kind of do the same thing,” Clemens said. “You go down there (to the batting cage) and just get your body moving and get ready.”

Clemens said he’s been working on catching up to power relievers’ fastballs while in the cage, taking swings off the velo machine to improve his timing.

“When I go in to pinch hit, sometimes I feel like I’m a little late on fastballs,” Clemens said. “So, I’ve been working on that just trying to stay ready and almost scoot up as close as I can to the machine to make it feel like 110 (mph). Then when you get called in the game, you’re ready for those fastballs and you know those late relievers are going to be throwing hard.”

The ball Clemens hit out of the park was a 98MPH four-seamer from Nationals closer Kyle Finnegan, who seems to be effective against everyone except the Phillies. He has blown 19 saves in his five-year career. Six of them have been against the Phillies.

Clemens was just the latest hero for a Phillies team who has been better than all but 23 teams in major league baseball history based on record through 47 games.

(Note: That tweet should have said “in the World Series era” because I only searched back to 1903. Apologies to the descendants of any player on any team prior to 1903. O.K. back to Kody Clemens.)

“He’s a Big League player,” Thomson said. “At that time (the start of the season) it was just a fit thing. (He’s been) fantastic. Almost every at bat has been a good at bat. He’s barreled up a lot of balls. In the game against the Mets he almost hit three home runs. He’s really swinging the bat well.”

Maybe he should just keep getting his bats from Harper instead of ordering them himself.

“I’ll give him whatever he wants,” Harper said.

But it wasn’t just Clemens. The Phillies came from behind three different times in the game against Washington and got great pitching in key spots to secure their 18th win in their last 22 games.

Harper keyed the first comeback, leading off the bottom of the fourth with a single. He advanced to second on a single by Alec Bohm, but the key play was stealing third base, taking advantage of both Nationals starter Mackenzie Gore not paying as close attention to him while third baseman Nick Senzel was way off the bag at third.

Stealing that base was crucial because Bryson Stott hit into a double play immediately thereafter. Harper scored on the play, but would have only been at third otherwise, and probably wouldn’t have scored as Nick Castellanos grounded out to end the inning.

“It’s amazing,” Clemens said. “We feel like we all show up and we’re expecting to win the game even before it starts. It’s an awesome atmosphere to be around.”

Stott tied the game at 2-2 when he homered in the bottom of the seventh.

It was a big homer for the Phillies because they got another outstanding outing from a starting pitcher – this time Cristopher Sanchez – who went seven innings allowing just two runs while striking out eight and walking none.

He did yield eight hits and had traffic on the bases at times, but he was able to pitch his way out of trouble with confidence.

“The growth of this guy mentally and emotionally, just fighting out of innings… he just kept pitching,” Thomson said.

To his credit, Sanchez pointed to his teammates Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola, saying they provide the blueprint for how to pitch through trouble. He said he’s watching and learning from two of the best.

“Great pitchers do that, and I try to mirror that from Wheels and Nola,” Sanchez said, through an interpreter. “Even if you get hit around sometimes, that doesn’t stop you. I’m trying to see that in myself as well.”

After Sanchez, Matt Strahm had another scoreless inning, running his streak to 18 2/3 straight innings without allowing a run. He hasn’t allowed one since Opening Day. In that time, he’s allowed just 10 hits and one walk while striking out 29.

“I know it doesn’t read on the gun – that’s how old I am, I’m calling it a radar gun – but there’s life to the fastball,” Thomson said before the game as to what’s making Strahm so effective. “It’s jumping out of his hand, and it’s really tough to hit when you can command it. It’s a really good thing to have.”

Add that to a really effective slider and Strahm’s deceptive delivery – he hides the ball well – and he’s become one of the toughest relievers to hit against in the sport.

“And the hair, the hair coming at the hitter,” Thomson joked.

Gregory Soto pitched very well in the 10th inning after Clemens tied it, keeping the Nats from scoring even the ghost runner.

“He was just nasty,” Thomson said.

The Phillies have now won or tied 14 straight series. It’s the second-longest streak in franchise history. J.T. Realmuto extended his hitting streak to 10 games and Stott his on-base streak to 17 games. Turner is scheduled to hit on the field in batting practice Sunday as he inches closer to a return.

Nola will be on the mound as the Phillies go for the sweep of Washington on Sunday and try to become just the 41st team to ever be 20 games over .500 through 48 games – and it’s only May 19th. Think about that.