August 29, 2019 / 1:50 AM / 18 days ago

Phillies pile up 17 hits in shredding Pirates

Pitcher Vince Velasquez rebounded from his worst start, Philadelphia produced a five-run fifth inning, and the Phillies breezed past the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates 12-3 on Wednesday night.

Aug 28, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates catcher Jacob Stallings (58) tags out Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Bryce Harper (3) on a third strike drop ball during the first inning at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Velasquez (6-7) failed to hold a 7-0 lead in Miami last Friday, lasting just 2 1/3 innings and allowing seven runs, but against Pittsburgh, he made just one costly mistake — Josh Bell’s two-run homer — in going five innings.

J.T. Realmuto went 3-for-5 with a home run and a triple, and Corey Dickerson added a homer. Cesar Hernandez notched three hits and three RBIs, and Bryce Harper contributed two hits and scored three times in the Phillies’ 17-hit attack.

Rhys Hoskins tripled and scored in the second, then stroked an RBI double in the third for his first two-hit game since July 24.

All eight starting position players for the Phillies recorded an RBI.

After a career-best outing last Friday, Pittsburgh’s Mitch Keller (1-3) allowed a career-worst eight runs and 11 hits in four innings in his seventh start.

Starling Marte (23rd homer) notched three hits, and Bell tallied two of the Pirates’ nine hits.

Mired in a 7-for-71 (.099) slump since Aug. 4, Hoskins led off the second with a drive off the top of the right field wall, legging out his team-leading fifth triple.

Hernandez grounded a single to give the home side a 1-0 lead, and Adam Haseley doubled in Hernandez for the early 2-0 advantage. Hoskins added on in the third by doubling in Harper for a 3-0 lead.

Bell cut it to 3-2 when he lashed a 95 mph fastball to left center field for his 34th homer and pushed his RBI total to 106.

The Phillies put the game away in the fifth when the first six batters reached base.

Dickerson opened off by ripping a Keller fastball for his ninth homer, ending a seven-pitch at-bat, and Realmuto tripled down the right field line past diving right fielder Jose Osuna.

Harper then singled him in for a 5-2 lead, and the Phillies loaded the bases. Hernandez lined a two-run single to make it 7-2, and Haseley had an RBI groundout.

Marte and Realmuto (20th homer) led off their clubs’ halves of the sixth inning with deep shots, and Jean Segura drove in Harper for a 10-3 lead.

Haseley scored on a passed ball in the seventh, and Scott Kingery rapped an RBI double in the eighth.

—Field Level Media

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