Joe Blanton pitched into the eighth inning to help the Philadelphia Phillies take a 5-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs in the second of four games.
Blanton (2-3) gave up two runs on eight hits and didn't issue a walk while striking out eight over 7 1/3 frames. Carlos Ruiz went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and three RBI while Jimmy Rollins had a two-run double to help the Phillies win for the third time in the past four games.
"I just tried to stay focused with what I was doing," said Blanton. "I just tired to keep it there and help us keep the lead."
Starlin Castro and Bryan LaHair each drove in a run for the Cubs, who had won three of four coming in. Randy Wells (0-1), making the start in place of an injured Ryan Dempster, gave up four runs on three hits and four walks over just 3 2/3 innings.
The Cubs got to Blanton in the first inning as Castro hit a two-out single, stole second and easily scored when LaHair followed with a double for a 1-0 lead.
The fourth inning saw the Phillies take the lead on a couple of bases loaded hits. The first came with one out and the bags packed as Ruiz hit a single to score Hunter Pence and Shane Victorino. After Pete Orr flied out and Blanton walked, Rollins punched a double to right to plate two more for a 4-1 lead.
"I tried to get too fancy and the walks killed me," said Wells. "It's inexcusable to walk the pitcher and keep the inning going, it was pretty brutal."
Ruiz's leadoff homer to start the sixth extended Philadelphia's lead to 5-1.
Chicago didn't get a man past second until the eighth when the team placed runners at the corners with one out. Chad Qualls then took the mound and a Castro fielder's choice scored one to make it 5-2, but LaHair struck out to end the frame.
Jonathan Papelbon set the side down in order in the ninth for his seventh save of the season.
Philly first baseman Jim Thome left in the fifth inning with lower back tightness...Kyle Kendrick takes the mound for the Phillies on Sunday while Matt Garza will toe the rubber for Chicago...Philly has won six of the last eight against Chicago...Blanton has not lost at home since May 8, 2010, a stretch of 19 appearances. He is 7-0 with a 4.17 earned run average and the team it 14-5 during that span...Ty Wigginton, who replaced Thome at first base, went 1-for-2 to extended his hit streak to 13 games.