Cristopher Sanchez

Phillies' clubhouse ‘erupted' over the Cris Sanchez news

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Team success is all that matters to this group but the individual awards have already added up for the Phillies with 11 games left before the All-Star break.

MLB announced Wednesday morning that both National League monthly honors went to Phillies — Bryce Harper is the Player of the Month, Cristopher Sanchez the Pitcher of the Month.

That makes two months in a row for Harper, who'd previously never won it.

It's also the second time in three months the Phillies have won the pitching award. It went to Ranger Suarez in April. Pretty incredible considering they're essentially the team's Nos. 3 and 4 starters behind Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola.

"Harp had a great month and winning back-to-back doesn't happen too often," manager Rob Thomson said. "But Sanchy, it hits my heart pretty good to see him win Pitcher of the Month because he's come a long way. He's a great guy. He's worked hard. He certainly earned it."

Thomson gathered the team pregame Tuesday afternoon to give them the news. Their reaction to the Sanchez piece of it sounds like something out of a TV show.

"Obviously there was an ovation for Harp, I started with Harp, and then I went to Sanchy and the place just erupted," he said. "They know how far he's come, the work that he's put in. They appreciate that."

Sanchez made five starts in June and went 3-0 with a 1.64 ERA and 0.82 WHIP. He did not allow a home run and still has been taken deep just once all season in 93⅓ innings. The Phillies signed him to a four-year, $22.5 million contract extension less than two weeks ago and he's responded with seven scoreless innings to beat the Diamondbacks and a three-hit shutout to beat the Marlins.

"Just his humbleness, really," Thomson said. "An example is the guy at the guard shack at CBP, I pull in, I stop and talk to him and he told me one time, he said Cris Sanchez comes in every day and he stops and says hello and talks to me. That tells me a lot about him for sure."

Sanchez' main competition for the monthly award was Paul Skenes, the Pirates rookie who pitched to a 1.78 ERA in June with 40 strikeouts in 30⅓ innings.

Harper beat out Shohei Ohtani. Harper hit .374 with a 1.166 OPS, 10 doubles, seven homers and 16 RBI. Ohtani hit .293 with a 1.110 OPS, four doubles, 12 homers and 24 RBI. There wouldn't have been a wrong answer.

Harper also knows he will be starting at first base for the National League in the All-Star Game. He already secured his spot as the leading vote-getter in the NL during Phase 1 of fan voting. He seems likely to be joined in the starting infield by teammates Trea Turner and Alec Bohm. All-Star starters are announced Wednesday night at 7 p.m. ET.

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