Phillies hit 4 homers in 13-1 win, finish sweep of Nationals

Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports
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PHILADELPHIA – Darick Hall hit two home runs and Nick Maton and Rhys Hoskins each hit two-run homers to lead the Philadelphia Phillies to a four-game sweep of the Washington Nationals with a 13-1 win on Sunday.

Maton drove in four runs, Bryson Stott had three RBIs and the Phillies scored five runs in the fourth and eighth innings.

Aaron Nola (8-8) struck out five and allowed one run in six innings to put the Phillies (60-48) 12 games over .500 for the first time since August 2018.

The Phillies failed to make the playoffs that season, part of a postseason drought that has lasted since 2011. But on a day when the Phillies honored the 1980 World Series champions, this year’s homer-happy team showed that perhaps the longest playoff absence in the National League might finally end.

Hall hit a pair of solo homers against Washington starter Cory Abbott (0-1) to play his part in the long-ball barrage against the Nationals. Hoskins homered all in four games.

The Phillies hit 14 homers in the four games, their most in any single series in franchise history. The previous record was set last season with 13 against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

The Phillies brought back a large portion of the roster from the 1980 champs, including disgraced Pete Rose.

Rose popped his head out of the stairwell near the visitor’s dugout and instantly heard screams of “Pete! Pete!” Rose turned and waved and pointed at fans as they snapped photos of baseball’s hit king. Rose received some light boos as he waited in line behind his former teammates but that turned into a rousing standing ovation from about 28,000 fans when he was introduced by public address announcer Dan Baker.

Rose returned to a Philadelphia baseball field for the first time since receiving a lifetime ban from Major League Baseball in 1989. The Phillies had planned to induct Rose into their Wall of Fame in 2017 until those plans were scrapped because of a woman’s claim she had a sexual relationship with him when she was a minor.

Rose called a female reporter who asked him about the accusations “babe” and turned prickly later when pressed on them.

“I’m going to tell you one more time: I’m here for the Philly fans, I’m here for my teammates, OK,” Rose said. “I’m here for the Philly organization and who cares what happened 50 years ago. ”

Rose then went on the TV broadcast and cursed and used crude terms when talking about fellow announcer former Phillies first baseman John Kruk, a testicular cancer survivor.

Rose’s appearance at Citizens Bank Park overshadowed what should have been a true celebration. Yes, for the 1980 champs, but also for this year’s team and a sweep that has them positioned down the stretch for a serious run at an NL wild-card berth. The Phillies can pad their record with a three-game set this week against the Marlins.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals claimed OF Alex Call off waivers from Cleveland and optioned him to Triple-A Rochester. Call, 27, made his major league debut for the Guardians this season, playing in 12 games. Drafted by the Chicago White Sox in the 3rd round of 2016 from Ball State, Call is a career .252 hitter with 111 doubles, 12 triples, 52 home runs and 253 RBIs in six minor league seasons. Recalled RHP Mason Thompson from Triple-A Rochester and optioned RHP Jordan Weems to Triple-A Rochester.

UP NEXT

The Nationals send RHP Anibal Sanchez (0-4, 7.65 ERA) to the mound Monday for the start of a three-game series in Chicago against Cubs RHP Keegan Thompson (8-5, 3.48).

The Phillies are off Monday. They send Zack Wheeler (10-5, 2.69 ERA) to the mound Tuesday for the start of a three-game home series against the Marlins and LHP Braxton Garrett (2-5, 3.88).

Shohei Ohtani agrees to $30 million deal for 2023 with Angels

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Shohei Ohtani agreed to a $30 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels for the 2023 season in the two-way superstar’s final year of arbitration eligibility before free agency.

The Angels announced the deal, avoiding a potentially complicated arbitration case with the 2021 AL MVP.

Ohtani’s deal is fully guaranteed, with no other provisions. The contract is the largest ever given to an arbitration-eligible player, surpassing the $27 million given to Mookie Betts by the Boston Red Sox in January 2020, a month before he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Ohtani is having another incredible season at the plate and on the mound for the Angels, regularly accomplishing feats that haven’t occurred in the major leagues since Babe Ruth’s heyday. He is a strong contender for the AL MVP award again alongside the Yankees’ Aaron Judge, who has tied the AL home run record and is closing in on the batting Triple Crown.

Ohtani is batting .276 with 34 homers, 94 RBIs and a .888 OPS as the Halos’ designated hitter. He is 15-8 with a 2.35 ERA and 213 strikeouts as their ace on the mound, and opponents are batting only .207 against him.

The 28-year-old Ohtani still will be a free agent after the 2023 season, and his future could be tied to the immediate fortunes of the Angels, who will complete their seventh consecutive losing season next week. The Angels didn’t trade Ohtani at the deadline despite being out of the playoff race again, and Ohtani is wildly popular among the club’s fans.

Ohtani repeatedly has said winning will be an important factor in choosing his home beyond 2023, and Angels owner Arte Moreno is currently exploring a sale of the team.

Moreno’s leadership has been widely criticized during the Angels’ mostly miserable run of play since 2009, and a fresh start with deep-pocketed new owners could be the best chance to persuade Ohtani to stay with the franchise he joined in 2018 from Japan. Ohtani immediately won the AL Rookie of the Year award, and he rounded into unique form last season after recovering fully from Tommy John surgery.