Friday, May 16, 2008
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PHILADELPHIA - Cole Hamels pitched his first career shutout, Ryan Howard homered and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves 5-0 on Thursday night.
Pedro Feliz and Shane Victorino also homered and drove in two runs each for the Phillies, who lead the major leagues with 59 home runs. The Florida Marlins have hit 58, but their game against Cincinnati was rained out Thursday.
Because of the postponement, the Phillies also moved within a game of the Marlins for the top spot in the NL East.
Hamels (5-3) gave up just four hits, struck out six and walked two in his first complete game of the season. Only two runners reached second base against Hamels, who has lasted at least seven innings in eight of his nine starts this season.
Feliz supplied some quick offense with a solo homer in the first, and Howard followed with a 426-foot solo shot over the center field wall in the third. The home run pushed Howard's season-high hitting streak to seven games.
Feliz drove in Pat Burrell later in the third, and Victorino hit his first homer of the season in the fourth, a two-run shot to left-center for a 5-0 lead.
All three homers came against Braves starter Chuck James (2-3), who allowed all five runs on six hits with five walks in four shaky innings.
Jimmy Rollins added two hits and scored a run for the Phillies, who finished with 12 hits and had every starter except for Chase Utley reach base on a hit. Rollins also stole a base in the first, the 14th consecutive steal for Philadelphia, dating to April 23 at Milwaukee.
The Braves played without Chipper Jones, who was a late scratch because of a sore groin suffered in his ninth inning at-bat Wednesday. Omar Infante took over at third base for Jones, who leads the major leagues with a .418 batting average.