Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) – Even a long rain delay couldn’t slow down the Phillies from winning another Vance Worley start.
The rookie right-hander fanned six over six strong innings and Raul Ibanez went 3-for-4 with three RBI in Philadelphia’s 6-3 victory over the Atlanta Braves at a soggy Citizens Bank Park.
Worley (11-1), who gave up seven hits and a pair of runs, won his ninth straight decision since his lone loss of the season May 29 on the road against the Mets.
What’s more impressive, though, is the team’s 14-game winning streak in Worley starts. It’s the longest such run for the Phillies since they won in 15 straight starts by Steve Carlton in 1972. Carlton’s streak is the longest of its kind for the Phillies in a single season.
"He did a good job," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said of Worley. "That’s basically how he’s pitched all year long. He kept us in the game. We always have a chance to win."
Chase Utley homered for the Phillies, who have opened this key three-game series with back-to-back wins to move 9 1/2 games ahead of the second-place Braves in the NL East.
Tim Hudson (14-9) was charged with six hits and four runs over six frames, as the wild card-leading Braves lost for the fourth time in five games.
Coming off Cliff Lee’s shutout in a 9-0 final Monday, the Phillies had to wait out a rain delay of 1 hour and 52 minutes at the start of Tuesday’s game. They became the first team to 90 wins this season, doing it for a franchise-best fourth straight year.
The Phillies reached the plateau in a team-record 138 games, surpassing the previous mark of 143 set in 1977.
The Braves and Phillies are the only two clubs in the majors who have yet to suffer a series sweep of three or more games in 2011. Atlanta will try to avoid the whitewash on Wednesday night when it sends Brandon Beachy to the mound against Roy Oswalt.
Ryan Madson got a double-play grounder off the bat of Brian McCann in the ninth and secured his 28th save.
Utley homered into the Phillies bullpen behind center field in the first inning and Ryan Howard, Hunter Pence and Ibanez followed with consecutive base hits for a 2-0 lead. The hit from Ibanez dropped in right-center field in front of a diving Michael Bourn.
Dan Uggla blasted his 33rd homer of the year leading off the fourth, a shot to right-center field. Chipper Jones and Freddie Freeman singled after that, but Worley fanned the next two batters and retired Hudson on a groundout to keep it a 2-1 game.
Worley walked two batters around a double from Jones to load the bases with nobody out in the sixth, but allowed just one run — a sacrifice fly to Alex Gonzalez.
That proved big for the Phillies, who scored twice in the bottom half. After Howard walked and Pence doubled to center field, Hudson’s wild pitch plated Howard when McCann couldn’t pick up the ball in time after it sailed over his glove. Ibanez then doubled high off the wall in right-center for a 4-2 margin.
Bourn recorded his 50th steal during the seventh inning, later scoring on a fielder’s choice from Uggla, but the Phillies tacked on two in the bottom half thanks to a groundout from Howard and a single from Ibanez.
Brad Lidge put two men on in the eighth, but escaped trouble for the Phillies.
"Towards the top of our lineup we were scuffling a little bit," Jones said. "When the top scuffles a little bit you struggle to score runs, get behind early and you put some pressure on yourself."
The Phillies recalled infielder/outfielder Pete Orr from Triple-A Lehigh Valley on Tuesday, while Chuck LaMar, the their assistant general manager of player development and scouting, announced his resignation…Uggla has a 10- game hitting streak…The Braves, who left 10 men on base, went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position…Manuel (634-476) is two wins shy of Harry Wright (636 wins from 1884-90 & 1890-93) for second place and 12 shy of Gene Mauch (645 wins from 1960-68) for first in Phillies history…Worley is the first pitcher in the majors whose team has won at least 14 consecutive games he started since the Cardinals won 17 straight starts made by Chris Carpenter from June 14-September 13, 2005. He is also the first rookie pitcher in baseball whose team has won at least 14 consecutive games he started since the Reds won 14 straight starts made by rookie hurler Wayne Simpson in 1970…The Phillies improved to 27-3 in games started by catcher Brian Schneider this year.