By Sam Bush
The formerly bedraggled Phillies, who have been injured and burdened by terrible defense, relief pitching and erratic offense, have turned it around.
Zack Wheeler struck out eight and tossed a three-hit shutout and Alex Bohm homered to lead the Phillies to a 2-0 win and four-game sweep of the Milwaukee BrewerS.
The Phillies are in in first place (17-15) and as the only team in NL East with a winning record.
Wheeler threw his second career shutout and complete game in 144 starts and first since 2014 when he played for the New York Mets. Wheeler put two runners on in the ninth and retired Daniel Vogelbach on a foul pop on the 118th pitch to finish the shutout.
Wheeler (3-2) and Brandon Woodruff’s pitcher’s duel ended when Bohm connected in the seventh for his fourth homer of the season. Rhys Hoskins added an RBI double in the eighth.
Wheeler gave up up just Billy McKinney’s leadoff double in the third until Lorenzo Cain’s one-out single in the ninth. McKinney was promptly erased when Luke Maile lined into a double play. Wheeler faced the minimum through eight.
Wheeler got some defensive help in the fifth when catcher Andrew Knapp made a sliding catch near the visiting dugout to retire Travis Shaw on a foul out. Brewers right fielder Tyrone Taylor came right back in the bottom of the inning and chased down Herrera’s tailing flyball.
The Phils Bryce Harper didn’t start for the fourth straight game because of a sore left wrist and Milwaukee’s Christian Yelich went on the injured list this week with a back injury.