PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Rookie Aaron Altherr homered, doubled and drove in three runs and Adam Morgan pitched seven strong innings to lead the Philadelphia Phillies to a 7-4 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday night.
Jeff Francoeur and Andres Blanco also homered for Philadelphia, which snapped a four-game losing streak.
Chase Utley was not in the starting lineup but was in uniform in the Phillies dugout. The Dodgers and Philadelphia reportedly were working out a deal on Wednesday that would send the six-time All-Star second baseman to Los Angeles.
Utley has a hit in eight straight games while batting .484 since coming off the disabled list (right ankle inflammation) on Aug. 7. Utley received a standing ovation after celebrating on the field after the game and doffed his hat in appreciation.
Edwin Encarnacion homered for the wild-card leading Blue Jays, who fell two games behind the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East. Toronto lost for just the fourth time in its last 20 games.
Mark Buehrle (13-6) had his shortest outing of the season, giving up four runs and seven hits in four innings. Since May 29, Buehrle hadn’t allowed more than three earned runs in his last 13 starts while going at least seven innings in 11 of those games.
Morgan (4-4) surrendered two runs and five hits while striking out three without a walk in seven innings.
Ken Giles pitched a scoreless ninth for his eighth save in 11 chances.
Encarnacion extended his hitting streak to 16 straight games with a homer leading off the fifth. It gave the Blue Jays at least one home run in 11 straight road games while bringing them within 4-1. Cliff Pennington’s RBI double in the inning made it 4-2.
The Phillies scored three runs in the fifth off Bo Schultz. Blanco led off with a drive over the wall in right, and Altherr hit a two-run shot to left to put Philadelphia in front 7-2.
The Blue Jays got two runs back in the eighth without a hit. They were helped by two walks from Luis Garcia and second baseman Cesar Hernandez’s error.
The Phillies jumped on Buehrle for three runs in the first on Francoeur’s sacrifice fly, Darin Ruf’s RBI single and a run-scoring double by Altherr. It was the first career hit for the 24-year-old Altherr, a 2009 ninth-round draft pick who was called up to fill the roster spot of Maikel Franco after the rookie third baseman was placed on the disabled list on Tuesday with a fractured left wrist.
Francoeur gave Philadelphia a 4-0 lead with a two-out homer in the third, the fifth in his last nine games at Citizens Bank Park.
Philadelphia won for just the second time in the last 12 games against Toronto.
Blue Jays outfielder Kevin Pillar is 8 for his last 56 (.143) after going 0 for 4.
Blue Jays: After Thursday’s day off, Toronto plays the first of three at the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night with LHP David Price (11-4, 2.41) facing LHP Hector Santiago (7-6, 2.86).
Phillies: Philadelphia opens a four-game series at Miami on Thursday night with RHP Jerome Williams (4-8, 5.47) opposing LHP Brad Hand (2-3, 4.74).
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