Philadelphia’s playoff hopes looked all but dead last week, but the Phillies have played themselves right back into the postseason hunt.
The Phillies look to make up ground in the National League wild-card race when they continue their four-game series with the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park.
The Phillies led the NL wild-card race before a five-game losing streak capped by a three-game sweep against the Houston Astros last week. However, they ended the slide with a 12-5 win over Florida on Friday, and took two of three from the Marlins in the weekend series.
Philadelphia followed that series with a 4-1 victory over NL East-leading Atlanta in Monday’s series opener. Pat Burrell had three hits and two RBIs and rookie starter Eude Brito threw six shutout innings for the Phillies, who trail the wild card-leading Marlins by one game and the Astros by a half-game. Florida beat Houston 8-2 on Monday.
The Phillies are barely alive in the NL East race, sitting seven games behind the Braves.
Despite the Phillies’ recent surge, Monday’s announced crowd of 21,169 was the smallest at home for Philadelphia this season as the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles opened their season in Atlanta.
“That’s OK,” said manager Charlie Manuel. “We’ll keep winning and it will be back to baseball.”
Todd Hollandsworth homered for the Braves, who have lost just three of their last 11.
Andruw Jones, a leading candidate for NL MVP, went 1-for-3 with a single. He had four homers in his previous three games.
Chipper Jones left in the sixth inning with a strained left quadriceps and is day-to-day.