Aaron Nola reached back and hurled a 93-mph four-seam fastball that painted the corner, enticing Orlando Arcia just enough to swing and miss to close out the seventh inning. Instantaneously, a standing ovation cascaded around Citizens Bank Park.
"It's a cool thing to be a part of," Nola said. "This place can get pretty loud and it's cool to be a part of."
Nola tossed seven solid innings and put together his sixth consecutive quality start to lead the Phillies to a 6-1 win over the sputtering Milwaukee Brewers. He matched his season high with nine strikeouts, surrendering one run on five hits. At one point he retired nine straight, eight via strikeouts.
"It feels pretty good," Nola said of his hot streak. "But I think team wins feel better. It feels good winning these ballgames, and the past couple series we've played pretty good baseball. We've hit and played defense pretty well and pitched pretty well."
Freddy Galvis put the Phillies on the board early, launching a two-run homer in the opening frame off Brewers' starter Matt Garza. The Phillies added four more runs in the sixth, highlighted by a Tommy Joseph two-run double to center.
Milwaukee's only run against Nola came on Brett Phillips' solo home run in the second inning.
The story of the night was Nola. He had excellent command of his fastball and seamlessly weaved in his curve and change-up. He's now reached the seventh inning in five of his last six starts.
“Nola was outstanding,” manager Pete Mackanin said. “He’s been working on that change-up all year and it’s really one of his better pitches right now.”
Phillies right-hander Pat Neshek pitched a scoreless eighth inning, marking his 22nd consecutive scoreless appearances at home. Since 1913, no Phillies reliever has started a season with a longer streak.
The two clubs resume the three-game set on Saturday with Jeremy Hellickson set to oppose lefty Brent Suter.
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BY PATRICK GORDON
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