Ryan Zimmerman doubled and Jayson Werth drove in the other run for the NL East champion Nationals, who extended their franchise record with 50 road wins.
Any plans the Nationals had of returning former MVP Bryce Harper to the lineup on Monday were derailed by his flulike symptoms. The five-time All-Star has been out since he slipped on a wet base and hyperextended his left knee on Aug. 12. He has missed 42 games.
The Nationals rested Daniel Murphy and Anthony Rendon.
Odubel Herrera homered for the Phillies, who have been playing better of late but entered one game ahead of the Giants for the worst record in baseball.
Cole (3-5) struck out five and walked two while giving up six hits.
Sean Doolittle pitched a perfect ninth for his 21st save in 21 chances with the Nationals since being acquired from Oakland on July 16.
Aaron Nola (12-11) allowed Taylor’s two-run drive in the second but otherwise pitched well for Philadelphia. He struck out nine, walked two and allowed five hits in six innings.
Taylor’s 17th homer this season, a 398-foot blast to left-center, gave the Nationals a 2-0 lead.
Cole kept the Phillies off the board until Herrera snapped an 0-for-17 skid with a solo shot, his 14th, on a 1-2 pitch with two outs in the fourth.
Werth’s eighth-inning groundout plated Zimmerman to put Washington on top 3-1.
The Nationals struck out 13 times.
The Nationals hoped to activate Harper for Monday’s game, but he instead spent much of the day receiving treatment. Washington has clinched the NL East and the goal is to get Harper some at-bats in the final week of the regular season to help him prepare for the playoffs.
The Phillies have lost 23 of their last 30 to Washington.
Rookie Philadelphia slugger Rhys Hoskins went 0 for 4 and has one hit in his past 15 at-bats.
Nationals lefty Gio Gonzalez (15-7, 2.68) looks to extend his success on Tuesday in Philadelphia, where he is 6-3 with a 2.44 ERA in 12 starts. Gonzalez, a former Phillies farmhand, has never allowed more than three earned runs at Citizens Bank Park.
Phillies righty Jake Thompson (2-2, 4.14) is 1-0 with a 0.87 ERA in his last two outings.
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