By Sam Bush
And just like that, the Phillies have battled back into a tie with the Mets for first place in NL East.
Rhys Hoskins homered twice and drove in five runs to back seven solid innings from Aaron Nola beat the Colorado Rockies 7-5.
Nola (2-1), who threw a shutout Sunday against St. Louis, allowed four runs and six hits but settled down after the fifth. He retired his last seven batters, added a single at the plate and was on base for both of Hoskins’ homers.
“It’s cool when guys hit home runs when I’m on the base. I don’t have to run too hard,” Nola said. “Rhys came up big.”
Héctor Neris worked around a triple in the ninth to get his third save in four chances and preserve the win for Nola.
“Anytime you can go seven innings and only give up three or four runs here it’s not too bad,” Phillies manager Joe Girardi said. “It’s a lot different than other places. It was huge.”
It was the sixth time in his career Hoskins has hit two home runs in a game and the first since Sept. 2, 2019, at Cincinnati.
“I’m missing a lot less pitches right now,” Hoskins said. “There’s still a little bit to clean up and let the swing and the work and the prep show up in the game. Really happy with the results tonight.”
Hoskins’ first drive, a two-run shot in the third, put Philadelphia ahead 2-1. The Phillies tacked on two more in the inning on a single by Didi Gregorius and a sacrifice fly.
The Rockies tied it on Ryan McMahon’s two-run homer in the fifth but Philadelphia struck again in the sixth. A two-out walk to Andrew McCutchen put runners on first and second, and Hoskins took Jhoulys Chacin (0-1) deep with a shot to right-center field.
”(Chacin) got ahead of Hoskins with a first-pitch fastball, and then it looked like he located a fastball, it looked like it was down and away, and somehow he lofted it and hit it out of the park,” Rockies manager Bud Black said.
Colorado scored a run in the eighth but had its three-game winning streak snapped.
“I think we’re playing good baseball,” McMahon said. “I know the record doesn’t reflect that, but we’ve been in a lot of games. We’re a couple of big knocks and a couple of big pitches away from a lot of different outcomes.”