The Phillies rode an early long ball by Scott Kingery and the right arm of Aaron Nola to a more-difficult-than-it-should-have-been 5-4 win over the Colorado Rockies at Citizens Bank Park on Tuesday night.
The victory gave the Phillies back-to-back wins for the first time since May 16-17 at Baltimore.
Nola and Colorado right-hander Jon Gray hooked up in a brisk pitchers' duel. They each struck out 10.
The Phillies didn’t do a whole lot of hitting — they were out-hit, 11-4 — but they got a big one in the first inning when Kingery smacked a three-run homer with two outs. Kingery had not homered since April 10. He hit a 1-2 fastball over the wall in left-center, making Gray pay for a pair of walks.
Kingery’s homer was one of just three hits that Gray gave up in six innings. However, he walked four, including two more in the third inning to set up Kingery’s fourth RBI of the game, a sacrifice fly to center field.
Jesmuel Valentin capped the Phillies' scoring with a pinch-hit RBI single in the eighth. Ultimately, the run proved huge.
Nola was sensational. He gave up just four hits and no walks in matching his season-high strikeout total. He threw 108 pitches and got 15 swinging strikes, nine on his curveball.
Nola is now 8-2 with a 2.27 ERA in 14 starts (see story).
Nola left the game with two runners on base and two outs in the bottom of the seventh. Edubray Ramos gave up a first-pitch base hit, scuttling the shutout bid.
Tommy Hunter pitched a scoreless eighth. The Phils led 5-1 heading to the bottom of the ninth. All hell broke loose in the frame as the Rockies collected five straight hits against Luis Garcia and Seranthony Dominguez and scored three runs to make it a one-run game. Dominguez struck out dangerous Nolan Arenado for the final out with two men on base.
The Rockies (32-34) have lost nine of their last 11.
The Phillies are 34-30 and 21-11 at home.
• More proof that he is being phased out of the picture (see story), Maikel Franco did not start for the fifth straight game. J.P. Crawford got the start at third base.
• The Phillies wore their cream-colored uniforms and red and blue caps. That combination is usually reserved for day games. The Phillies wore that combo so they would line up with Rhys Hoskins, who needs to wear his blue and red batting helmet because it protects his broken jaw. Hoskins is awaiting a red helmet with jaw protection.