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Phillies chase Sale after just four innings

MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies manager Pete Mackanin sat one of the hottest hitters in baseball Wednesday night because he did not want White Sox ace Chris Sale to mess with the hitter's mojo.

It turns out the Phillies did not need Odubel Herrera, who had hit .536 in the previous seven games. They hit Sale hard in a 8-3 victory at Citizens Bank Park, hammering seven hits and six runs against him in just four innings. It was the second-shortest start of the season for Sale, who lasted just 3 1/3 innings May 24 against the Indians.

Full Game Coverage

PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies manager Pete Mackanin sat one of the hottest hitters in baseball Wednesday night because he did not want White Sox ace Chris Sale to mess with the hitter's mojo.

It turns out the Phillies did not need Odubel Herrera, who had hit .536 in the previous seven games. They hit Sale hard in a 8-3 victory at Citizens Bank Park, hammering seven hits and six runs against him in just four innings. It was the second-shortest start of the season for Sale, who lasted just 3 1/3 innings May 24 against the Indians.

Full Game Coverage

"He didn't have it tonight," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "I think, control-wise, even the first inning you see the way he hits a couple guys, he wasn't really controlling the slider too much. They got some good swings on him. Usually there's a big difference between his fastball and changeup. Tonight it didn't seem like there was as much life on the fastball."

Phillies first baseman Tommy Joseph provided much of the damage, knocking in a run with a double in the first inning and hitting a two-run home run to left field in the third. Cameron Rupp added a two-run double in the first to hand the Phillies a 3-0 lead. Maikel Franco's two-out single made it 8-1.

Video: CWS@PHI: Joseph one-hops the wall in left, plates one

"He's Chris Sale," Joseph said. "He's obviously in contention for the AL Cy Young every year. So it's a good confidence booster for us."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Tommy hits 21st: Joseph's 21st homer of the season moved him into a fourth-place tie with Scott Rolen (1997) for the most home runs by a rookie in Phillies history. If Joseph hits one more he will tie Ryan Howard (22 in 2005) for third place. Only Willie Montanez (30 in 1971) and Dick Allen (29 in 1964) have hit more. But only Howard has homered at a better rate as a rookie than Joseph (minimum 300 plate appearances). Howard averaged a homer every 14.18 at-bats in 2005. Joseph is averaging one every 14.33 at-bats.

"Scott?" Joseph said about Rolen. "That's a pretty good guy to tie. Getting into that elite company there." More >

Video: CWS@PHI: Joseph on homer, offensive production

So long, Cy Young?: Sale entered Wednesday's game as the leading American League Cy Young candidate, per Bovada, at 1.6-to-1, ahead of Cleveland's Corey Kluber and Boston's Rick Porcello, both at 2-to-1. Facing a meager Phillies lineup, Sale had a chance to cement himself as the front-runner in the race. Instead, he gave up three runs before recording his second out. Nobody in the Phillies' starting lineup had ever faced Sale, and yet they prevented him from turning in his seventh straight start of at least eight innings, or even coming close.

"We're all entitled to have a bad night and tonight was mine, unfortunately," Sale said. "It would've been nice to sneak out of here with at least one win. But I was just godawful tonight." More >

Video: CWS@PHI: Sale picks up his first K of the night

Eickhoff strong again: Phillies right-hander Jerad Eickhoff is finishing up a strong first full season in the big leagues. He allowed six hits and three runs in seven innings to improve to 11-14 with a 3.75 ERA. It was just the fifth time this season Eickhoff received five or more runs of support in a start. He entered the game with a 3.59 runs support average, which ranked 75th out of 77 qualified pitchers in baseball. He also reached 187 1/3 innings, putting him within reach of 200 with two starts remaining.

"I think that would be a pretty cool benchmark to get to, being the first full year," Eickhoff said.

Video: CWS@PHI: Eickhof records his sixth K of the night

Sox sluggers: The White Sox weren't able to mount much of a threat against Eickhoff. But the damage they did do came with an exclamation point. Adam Eaton led off the game with homer that just cleared the right-field wall for his fifth leadoff home run this season and the ninth of his career. All three runs Chicago scored came on solo shots, including back-to-back dingers from Todd Frazier and Alex Avila to begin the seventh, Eickhoff's last inning. It was the seventh time the White Sox have gone back-to-back this season. Avila was a part of the last time, too, on Aug. 31 against the Tigers when he followed a Jose Abreu fourth-inning blast with one of his own. Frazier is now at 38 homers, tied for fifth in the AL, with 11 games left to play. His previous career high was 35, set last season.

Video: CWS@PHI: Frazier, Avila belt solo homers in the 7th

QUOTABLE
"I don't play this game for stuff like that. I'm here to win games, not win any trophies or whatever is else. I want to win games and I wanted to win tonight. It was a frustrating night." -- Sale on the Cy Young race

"You beat a guy like Sale today, maybe he wasn't at his best, but it doesn't matter to me. We beat him." -- Phillies manager Pete Mackanin

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
• Phillies' starting pitchers have allowed three earned runs or fewer in 18 consecutive starts, which is their longest streak since June 27-July 17, 1989 (also 18 games).

• Three of Sale's five starts this season in which he allowed at least five runs have come against the four National League opponents he has faced. Between starts against the Phillies, Cubs, Marlins and Braves, Sale is 0-4 with an 8.72 ERA.

GOEDDEL HIT IN HELMET BY PITCH, LEAVES GAME
Phillies left fielder Tyler Goeddel left the game in the sixth inning when Sox reliever Chris Beck hit him in the helmet with a 93-mph fastball. Goeddel lay on his back at home plate for a couple minutes before standing up and walking back to the Phillies' dugout. Herrera took his place at first base. It was the fourth Phillies batter hit by a pitch in the game, which tied a Phillies' franchise record for a single game (Sept. 14, 1904, vs. Brooklyn, and May 15, 1960, vs. Cincinnati). Sale hit three batters.

The Phillies had no update on Goeddel after the game, only saying he was "a little sore" and continued to be evaluated.

Video: CWS@PHI: Goeddel leaves game in the 6th

INSTANT REPLAY
The Phillies challenged a call in the third inning that Roman Quinn was caught stealing third base. The replay official in New York ruled that Quinn beat Avila's throw and Frazier's tag to the bag and the call was overturned.

Video: CWS@PHI: Quinn slides around tag to steal third base

WHAT'S NEXT
White Sox: After a day off Thursday, the White Sox begin a three-game set against the Indians at Progressive Field on Friday at 7:10 CT. Right-hander Miguel Gonzalez (4-7, 3.83 ERA) faces Trevor Bauer (11-8, 4.24 ERA) in the series opener.

Phillies: The Phillies begin their final road trip of the season Thursday night in the series opener against the Mets at Citi Field. Left-hander Adam Morgan (2-10, 5.49 ERA) faces right-hander Seth Lugo (4-2, 2.35 ERA) in an important series for the Mets, who are fighting for a National League Wild Card.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Evan Webeck is a reporter for MLB.com based in Philadelphia and covered the White Sox on Wednesday.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jerad Eickhoff, Tommy Joseph, Chris Sale