Hernandez two-run single in ninth lifts Phillies past Braves

Cesar Hernandez collects game-winning RBI for Phillies
Cesar Hernandez played the hero role on Saturday night, lofting a single into left field in the ninth inning to drive in a pair of runs to lift the Phillies past the Braves, 6-5, at SunTrust Park.

Scott Kingery reached via a single in the ninth and Sean Rodriguez reached base following an errant throw by Luke Jackson on a sacrifice-bunt attempt. The pair went on to score arguably the two most significant runs this season for the Phils.

Hernandez finished the evening 2-for-4 with three RBIs while Kingery finished 3-for-3 on the night to raise his batting average on the year to .347.

Hector Neris, who surrendered the game-winning run in the final frame on Friday, redeemed himself with a seven-pitch scoreless inning on Saturday to record his 16th save of the season.

The win brought the Phillies to within 1 1./2 games of the Braves in the NL East and also snapped the Braves' eight-game winning streak.

Aaron Nola lasted just 4 1/3 innings for the Phils, surrendering five runs on six hits. He surrendered a pair of homers and his ERA rose to 4.89 on the season. He has a 5.26 ERA over his last five starts. The bullpen combined to allow just two hits over the final four innings to secure the win.



Injury Concerns
Jay Bruce left the game in the fourth inning with tightness in his left hamstring. He's listed as day-to-day. J.T. Realmuto also left the game early, exiting in the sixth - an inning after taking a foul ball to the groin area. There was no update provided about Realmuto's status after the contest.

Sunday Starter
The Phillies have not yet named a starter for Sunday's series finale, but it's likely rookie Cole Irvin will see a decent chunk of innings. He was skipped in his last turn to start for Triple-A. The spot was vacated when the club moved Jerad Eickhoff to the bullpen.
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BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

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