Werth, Harper power Nationals to sweep of Phillies
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Jayson Werth hit two homers, Bryce Harper also went deep and Gio Gonzalez tied his career-high with 12 strikeouts to lead the Washington Nationals to a 12-2 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday night.
Werth and Harper each had four home runs in the three-game sweep of Philadelphia. The Nationals, who began Wednesday 8 1/2 games behind the Mets in the NL East, have won four straight.
Darin Ruf homered for Philadelphia, which has dropped seven of 10.
Gonzalez (11-7) allowed two runs on five hits with a pair of walks in seven innings.
Alec Asher (0-4), making his fourth career start, was tagged for four runs on seven hits in five innings.
Werth put the Nationals up 2-0 in the fourth with a drive to left-center. After the Phillies tied it in the bottom of the frame on Ruf’s two-run shot to left, Washington scored two runs on five hits in the fifth to go up 4-2.
Werth led off the sixth with a solo homer to left-center. He had a pair of homers, including a grand slam, in Monday’s series-opening win.
Harper then connected on a two-run, opposite-field shot with one out in the seventh, upping his season total to an NL-best 40.
Yunel Escobar went 2-for-5 with a double and two RBIs to continue his hot streak. He is batting .406 in his last 17 games.
Nationals: INF Ryan Zimmerman (oblique) missed his eighth straight game. Escobar was lifted after singling in the eighth inning. He slowly jogged to first and on to second after Jeff Francoeur’s error in right field. In the fifth inning, Escobar was tagged out at home trying to score from third on Harper’s single. He appeared to injure his right leg in a collision at home plate with catcher Cameron Rupp.
Phillies: 1B Ryan Howard (left knee) missed his second straight game. 3B Maikel Franco (fractured left wrist) will begin a rehab stint at Clearwater on Thursday. If all goes well, Franco could rejoin the Phillies on Tuesday in Miami.
Nationals: RHP Tanner Roark (4-5, 4.38) makes his ninth start in 37 appearances as Washington opens a four-game home series against Miami on Thursday night. RHP Jarred Cosart (1-4, 4.58) starts for the Marlins.
Phillies: After an off day on Thursday, LHP Adam Morgan (5-6, 4.60) takes the mound for Philadelphia on Friday night to begin a three-game series at Atlanta. Morgan is 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in two starts vs. the Braves, and 0-2 with a 7.94 ERA in his last two outings.