Who did what: Placido Polanco's(notes) RBI single broke a tie in the eighth for the Phillies, countering a three-run rally by the Fishies. With Brad Lidge(notes) resting his tender elbow, Ryan Madson(notes) got four outs for the save. ... James McDonald(notes) pitched seven innings and Ronnie Cedeño hit a key triple for the Bucs.
Remember, remember, the 7th of September: Do you recall the previous morning the Phillies were in first place? Only Memorial Day. The NL East had been all-ATL all summer — much to the beguiling of Phillies fans, many of whom treat each game on the 162-game baseball schedule like a win-or-else Sunday in the NFL.
"It's always good to be in first," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "That's the only way to live."
The ol' switcheroo: The Braves had a seven-game lead on the Phillies on July 21, but have gone 24-22 since. The Phillies, who only recently put their preferred lineup back on the field, have gone 32-15.
"Did we expect to be in first place until the end of the season? I mean, it would have been nice," Braves starter Tim Hudson(notes) said. "But we understand that Philly is a pretty good team. There’s a lot of games left (six) with Philly."
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Blue Jays 8, Rangers 5: The Rangers have a cushion and they're apparently intent on using all of it.
Astros 7, Cubs 3: Nobody wants to play the Astros right now; They've won 12 of 16. The Cubs? It's OK to play the Cubs whenever.
Rays 14, Red Sox 5: The Red Sox have issued six bases-loaded walks in the past three games. It's the path of least resistance they're walking.
Twins 10, Royals 3: All Jimmers does is mash taters. Translation: Another home run for James Howard Thome.
Giants 2, Dodgers 1: Mat Latos(notes) set a major league record for most consecutive starts — 15 — of five or more innings while allowing two or fewer runs scored. I'm going to name this award the Mat Latos Baseball-Reference Play Index Award. We'll always remember Sept. 7 for it.
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