World Baseball Classic

Christopher Sánchez works 7 scoreless innings as Phillies beat Diamondbacks 4-1

Christopher Sánchez works 7 scoreless innings as Phillies beat Diamondbacks 4-1

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Cristopher Sánchez tossed seven scoreless innings a day after the Phillies gave him a new contract, Bryce Harper doubled and singled, and NL-best Philadelphia beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-1 on Sunday.

David Dahl hit a two-run single, and Bryson Stott and Nick Castellanos also had RBIs for the Phillies. Philadelphia took two of three in the series that was a rematch of last season’s NL Championship Series, won by Arizona.

Sánchez's consistency set up the series-clinching victory.

“Everything is down, down, down,” Phillies manager Rob Thomson said of Sánchez's location. “He's grown up since the first day I saw him.”

Ketel Marte hit an RBI single in the ninth for the Diamondbacks, who managed just six hits.

“We fought hard,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said.

Philadelphia entered Sunday with a seven-game lead over Atlanta in the NL East. The Diamondbacks began play nine games back of the Dodgers in the NL West but in the thick of the wild-card race.

The first pitch of 11:36 a.m. marked the earliest start to a game at Citizens Bank Park, which opened in 2004.

Sánchez (5-3) struck out four, walked none and allowed only three singles. He signed a new four-year, $22.5 million contract for 2025-28 on Saturday.

“Attack the hitters and execute the pitches where I wanted to,” Sánchez, through an interpreter, said of the key to his start. “It's incredible to sign an extension yesterday and have this outing. I have to keep competing.”

“He kept us off balance,” Lovullo said.

Philadelphia gave the 27-year-old lefty an early lead when when Harper led off the second inning with a double off Slade Cecconi (2-6) and scored on Castellanos’ first-pitch single to left. It was the 800th career RBI for Castellanos.

José Alvarado tossed a 1-2-3 eighth, striking out two. Jeff Hoffman surrendered Marte's run-scoring hit in the ninth.

Dahl’s two-run single in the sixth off Justin Martinez made it 3-0, and the Phillies added a run in the seventh on Stott’s opposite-field RBI single.

The contest was played in front of a sellout crowd of 44,079 on a steamy day in Philadelphia, with a morning game-time temperature of 91 degrees. Lovullo ditched the customary uniform in favor of a gray T-shirt with a Diamondbacks logo.

Plate umpire Ben May ejected Diamondbacks bench coach Jeff Banister in the bottom of the sixth inning after May called a pitch-clock violation on lefty Joe Mantiply.

“We were really frustrated,” Lovullo said. “We're passionate and want to win baseball games.”

Cecconi worked three innings, allowing one run on five hits.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Diamondbacks: OF Lourdes Gurriel Jr. returned to the lineup after sitting out Saturday with elbow soreness. He went 2 for 4 with a single.

Phillies: Placed RHP Taijuan Walker on the 15-day injured list with right index finger inflammation. RHP Spencer Turnbull will assume Walker’s turn in the rotation on Wednesday at Detroit, and the Phillies called up RHP Michael Mercado to fill Turnbull’s spot in the bullpen.

UP NEXT

Diamondbacks: Return to Arizona for a six-game homestand that begins on Tuesday night against the Twins. Diamondbacks RHP Brandon Pfaadt (3-6, 4.37 ERA) opposes Minnesota RHP Joe Ryan (5-5, 3.13).

Phillies: RHP Aaron Nola (8-3, 3.54) takes the mound for Philadelphia to start a three-game series at Detroit on Monday night. RHP Casey Mize (1-5, 4.43) is scheduled to start for the Tigers.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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