Javier Baez hit one of three solo home runs off Cy Young candidate Aaron Nola to reach 30 home runs and 100 RBIs, and Jon Lester pitched six shutout innings to continue his mastery of the Phillies and help lead the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs to an 8-1 victory over Philadelphia on Sunday.
Daniel Murphy and Anthony Rizzo also went deep off Nola (15-4), who gave up three home runs in a game for just the second time over 88 starts in his four-year career.
Lester (15-5) surrendered eight hits, struck out seven and walked none while improving to 8-0 with a 1.49 ERA in 10 career regular-season starts against the Phillies.
Chicago, which has won 10 of 12, began play leading the Cardinals by 4 ½ games.
The Phillies fell 3½ games back of Atlanta, which hosted Pittsburgh Sunday night. Jorge Alfaro had two hits, including an RBI double in the ninth, for Philadelphia.
Manager Gabe Kapler moved Nola up a day to give him another start at home, where the star right-hander has been dominant, but it backfired. Nola gave up four runs on five hits in 5 2/3 innings with 11 strikeouts and two walks.
Nola fanned seven of the first nine hitters, including six in a row, before Murphy's two-out shot to right in the third gave Chicago a 1-0 lead. Murphy looked bad while weakly fouling off the previous two pitches before launching a 1-2, 94-mph fastball into the seats to continue his success against Nola. Murphy is batting .345 (10-for-29) with two homers and six RBIs against the right-hander.
Rizzo led off the fourth by clubbing an 0-1, 85-mph changeup over the wall in left, and Baez, the league leader in RBIs entering Sunday, hit a 1-2 fastball out to left in the sixth.
Nola also gave up an RBI triple to Kyle Schwarber in the sixth to snap a string of 17 straight home starts allowing three runs or less. He dropped to 9-1 at home, where his ERA rose from 1.94 to 2.21. Nola's overall ERA increased from 2.10 to 2.23.
The other top contenders for the NL Cy Young, Washington's Max Scherzer and the Mets' Jacob de Grom, will pitch on Monday.