PHILS STILL LEAD BY 10 AFTER A DISASTROUS 5TH!

By Peter Marks

Enmanuel Valdez hit a tie-breaking two-run double in Boston’s five-run fifth inning, and the Red Sox beat the Phillies 8-6, who kept their 10-game lead in NL East over the Braves, who also lost to the Orioles 4-2.

Bryce Harper and Nick Castellanos each had two hits for NL East-leading Phillies (46-21), who had won five of six. Bryson Stott had two RBI.

Harper and Whit Merrifield each hit an early RBI single against Nick Pivetta, and David Dahl doubled home Stott to make it 4-0 in the third.

But Jamie Westbrook drove in Rafael Devers with a sacrifice fly for Boston in the fourth, and the Red Sox went ahead for good with their big fifth inning.

Hamilton, Ceddanne Rafaela and Duran started the rally with three consecutive singles, chasing Cristopher Sánchez. Merrifield committed a throwing error on Duran’s tough chopper up the middle, and Hamilton and Rafaela scampered home on the play.

“He wasn’t mixing his pitches,” Phillies manager Rob Thomson said of Sánchez. “He was behind in the count, his command was off a little bit, velo was there. He wasn’t commanding his fastball, he wasn’t commanding his changeup. They were taking a lot of balls in the dirt.

“Could be just one of those nights. He’ll be back out there.”

Rob Refsnyder greeted José Ruiz (1-1) with another single, and Tyler O’Neill’s sacrifice fly tied it at 4. With two outs and runners on the corners, Valdez’s pinch-hit drive off the wall in left gave the Red Sox a 6-4 lead.

Boston added two more in the sixth. Bobby Dalbec reached on a leadoff walk before Hamilton drove a 1-0 fastball from Spencer Turnbull deep to right-center for his fourth homer.

Cam Booser (1-2) pitched a scoreless inning for the win, and Kenley Jansen handled the ninth for his 10th save.

The Phillies closed to 8-6 when Harper doubled, advanced on a Jansen balk and scored on Alec Bohm’s sacrifice fly. Merrifield walked with two down, but Dahl flied to right for the final out.

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