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Apr 23, 2024 3:04 am

Phillies’ pitching staff aims to keep rolling vs. Reds

cristopher sanchez

The Philadelphia Phillies have won 15 of their first 23 games of the season for just the third time since 1995, and their starting pitching deserves much of the credit.

The Phillies hope to get another strong outing when left-hander Cristopher Sanchez takes the mound against the host Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday.

Philadelphia opened the four-game series with a 7-0 victory on Monday behind a stellar performance from Ranger Suarez, who allowed two hits in seven innings and extended his streak of scoreless innings to 25.

“We just weren’t able to get much going at all,” Reds manager David Bell said. “We had a few good at-bats mixed in there, but you just give him a lot of credit. You definitely saw why he’s been so good for them.”

The Phillies’ starting pitchers have allowed a total of four earned runs in 51 2/3 innings over the past seven games, with 53 strikeouts against nine walks.

“I can’t remember (a better stretch),” Philadelphia manager Rob Thomson said. “They’ve really pitched well. They have. So well that it’s tough to get some relievers work.”

Sanchez (1-2, 2.95 ERA) will look to continue the impressive run on Tuesday. He was credited with the win after striking out 10 over six innings of one-run ball in a 7-6 victory against the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday.

“Sanchy was great,” Thomson said. “A lot of strikes, locating his fastball, back-of-the plate sliders that they were swinging through. A good changeup. A lot of swing and miss. Great poise. He really pitched well.”

Sanchez, 27, is 1-0 with a 4.09 ERA in two career starts against Cincinnati. He gave up two runs over five-plus innings in a no-decision vs. the Reds on April 1.

Cincinnati will turn to left-hander Andrew Abbott (1-2, 2.70 ERA), who is making his fifth start of the season and his second of the month against the Phillies.

Abbott, 24, allowed two runs over six innings in a 5-1 setback against the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday. He was tagged with the loss.

“Just a few mistake pitches, and they put some good swings on them,” Abbott said. “But other than that, I was able to execute and keep them off balance and do some early and soft contact.”

Abbott received a no-decision against the Sanchez and the Phillies on April 1, when he allowed two runs on three hits over 5 1/3 innings.

Cincinnati is monitoring the status of second baseman Jonathan India and outfielder Jake Fraley, who have both missed the past two games due to illness.

Philadelphia received a spark in the series opener from Kody Clemens, who went 2-for-4 with a three-run homer after being recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley before the game.

Clemens was promoted to play first base in place of Bryce Harper, who was placed on the paternity list on Monday.

Clemens, 27, was hitting .270 with three homers and 11 RBIs in 16 games at Triple-A this season. Harper could return to the team for the series finale on Thursday afternoon.

Even without Harper, the Phillies boast a deep lineup that ranks among the majors’ best. Shortstop Trea Turner is riding an 11-game hitting streak, and third baseman Alec Bohm is 10-for-22 (.455) over his past six games.

–Field Level Media

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