WASHINGTON – Gio Gonzalez allowed one run over seven innings and the Washington Nationals hit a season-high three home runs in a 7-1 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday.
Jayson Werth hit a three-run drive, Chad Tracy connected with a man on and Ian Desmond had a solo shot for the Nationals, who have won seven straight over the Phillies dating to last year. By taking the first two games of the three-game set, first-place Washington improved to 8-1 in series play this season.
Rick Ankiel had three hits in a second consecutive game, and Tracy and Steve Lombardozzi also had three hits apiece for Washington. Rookie Bryce Harper went 0 for 4 with a walk, dropping his batting average 55 points to .261.
The seven runs matched a season high for the Nationals, who have won four straight, and the 15 hits were their most in a game this year.
Gonzalez (3-1) gave up four hits, struck out seven and walked one. Acquired last December in a trade with Oakland, the left-hander has a 1.72 ERA in six starts this season and has yielded only three runs over the last 27 innings.
He also played a key role at the plate, sparking a four-run fifth inning with his second career hit, a leadoff double that preceded the three-run drive by Werth.
Philadelphia starter Vance Worley (2-2) gave up five runs and 11 hits in six innings. The right-hander was 2-0 with a 0.90 ERA in his previous three starts.
Carlos Ruiz drove in the lone run for the Phillies, who have lost six straight against left-handed starters.
Philadelphia took a 1-0 lead in the fourth. Shane Victorino hit a leadoff double, advanced on a fly ball and scored on a sacrifice fly by Ruiz, his team-high 19th RBI.
In the bottom half, Tracy doubled with one out and advanced on a two-out infield single before Wilson Ramos bounced out. It was the fourth straight inning that Washington got a runner in scoring position before Worley worked out of the trouble.
The Nationals broke the trend in a momentum-turning fifth that began when Gonzalez lined a 3-2 pitch into the gap in right-center. Prior to the hit, the pitcher was 1 for 17 in his career at the plate.
With runners at the corners and one out, Harper hit a fly ball to left that was too short for Gonzalez to tag up. Two pitches later, however, Werth ripped a 1-0 pitch over the left-field wall into the Washington bullpen. Tracy and Danny Espinoza followed with singles and Ankiel hit a run-scoring double, but Tracy was thrown out at the plate on the back end of the play.
Desmond homered in the sixth to make it 5-1 and Tracy hit his second of the season in the seventh.
NOTES: Nationals 3B Ryan Zimmerman (shoulder) expects to be activated from the disabled list on Tuesday. ... The Phillies send Cole Hamels (3-1) to the mound Sunday night in the series finale. Jordan Zimmermann (1-2) will pitch for Washington. ... The three HRs were tied for the most yielded in a game by Philadelphia this season.