Ryan Howard belted a two-run homer and Kyle Kendrick tossed six strong innings as the Philadelphia Phillies recorded a 5-2 triumph over the Washington Nationals on Saturday.
Jayson Werth and Raul Ibanez launched solo shots and Wilson Valdez added an RBI double as Philadelphia (88-61) won its sixth straight and 18th in its last 22 games.
The NL East-leading Phillies remained three games ahead of the Atlanta Braves (85-64), who recorded a 4-2 victory over the New York Mets on Saturday afternoon.
Howard's blast was his 30th of the season, giving the slugger five consecutive campaigns of at least 30 homers and 100 RBIs.
The offensive explosion was enough for Kendrick (10-9), who entered the contest with four losses in his last five starts. The 26-year-old right-hander fared well in this one, allowing two runs and six hits to pick up the win.
Chad Durbin and Ryan Madson worked one scoreless inning apiece to bridge the gap to Brad Lidge, who retired the side in the ninth for his 23rd save of the season.
Ian Desmond and Michael Morse had run-scoring singles for Washington (62-86), which has dropped eight of its last 10 games.
Jordan Zimmermann (0-2) permitted five runs and nine hits in just three innings to take the loss.