Philadelphia Baseball Review - Phillies News, Rumors and Analysis
Vince Velasquez
Wheeler has posted a 2.57 ERA this year over 22 starts. | PHOTO: Len Yancy
The positive trend continued for the Phillies on Tuesday night as Zack Wheeler pieced together another solid start, and the offense hit four homers in a 5-4 win over the Nationals. 

The win pushed the club to a game over .500 (54-53) while trimming the deficit to 1 1/2 games behind the Mets for first place in the National League East. 

“We’re getting there,” said Wheeler. “These are the games we need to win. We’ve been doing that. It doesn’t really matter how you win them as long as you win them. We’re keeping track and hopefully we can continue this.” 

Wheeler surrendered four runs over 7 1/3 innings. He walked one and whiffed five. The Phillies carried a 4-2 lead into the eighth inning before Bryce Harper launched a solo shot to increase the Phils' lead. It turned out to be the difference-maker as Wheeler surrendered a two-run blast to Josh Bell in the bottom of the frame to bring the Nats within a run. 

Hector Neris collected a pair of outs to close the eighth, and Jose Alvarado tossed a scoreless ninth to collect the save. New closer Ian Kennedy was given the night off after appearing in back-to-back games. 

"He’s OK,” manager Joe Girardi said. “I made the decision not to use him. He warmed up Saturday and pitched Sunday and Monday. I was not comfortable putting him in and jeopardizing his health." 

Jean Segura, J.T. Realmuto, and Ronald Torreyes hit the other three homers on the night for the Phillies. The Phillies are winners of three straight and have two more games to go with the Nats before coming home for an important weekend series with the Mets. 

Chase Anderson will start for the Phils on Wednesday. He surrendered two runs on three hits over four innings in his last outing against Pittsburgh. 

The Nats counter with righty Paolo Espino.

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Philadelphia Baseball Review - Phillies News, Rumors and Analysis