Half of the Phillies' 14 remaining games are against the lowly Washington Nationals. The way things are going, it's too bad they're not against the NL East-leading Mets.
Greg Dobbs hit a pinch-hit sacrifice fly in the 10th inning Friday night, lifting Philadelphia to a 3-2 victory over New York in the opener of a crucial weekend series.
Philadelphia picked up its sixth straight victory against the Mets - five have been by two runs or fewer and two came in extra innings - and has won five of its past seven overall.
``In tough situations with a team over and over again, you get yourself real familiar with everything they're trying to do and vice versa,'' shortstop Jimmy Rollins said.
On a night where the Mets' Tom Glavine and the Phillies' Jamie Moyer pitched well but failed to get decisions, Philadelphia picked up its major league-leading 44th come-from-behind win and cut the Mets' lead to 5 1/2 games in the division.
The Phillies remained 1 1/2 games behind wild card-leading San Diego, which beat the San Francisco Giants 5-4. The Los Angeles Dodgers are also 1 1/2 games behind the Padres after beating the NL West-leading Arizona Diamondbacks 7-4.
In other NL games, it was Florida 7, Colorado 6; Chicago 5, St. Louis 3; Cincinnati 6, Milwaukee 5; Atlanta 8, Washington 5 in 13 innings and Pittsburgh 4, Houston 3.
The Phillies and Mets were playing the first matchup between the top teams in the division since Philadelphia swept a four-game series last month to cut its deficit to two games. New York responded by winning 10 of 12.
``They've played well late in games and we haven't,'' Mets third baseman David Wright said. ``We had our opportunities tonight offensively and didn't cash in.''
Jayson Werth led off the 10th inning with a single off Aaron Heilman (7-7). Carlos Ruiz popped a bunt foul but backup catcher Mike DiFelice, who entered after Paul Lo Duca was ejected in the ninth, couldn't bring it in.
Given another chance, Ruiz got the sacrifice down and Heilman threw the ball into center field, giving Philadelphia runners on first and second. Abraham Nunez advanced both runners with another sacrifice, and Dobbs' fly ball to center field made it 3-2.
Tom Gordon (3-2) struck out three in 1 1-3 scoreless innings to get the win and Brett Myers got three outs for his 16th save.
Philadelphia tied it at 2 in the sixth when Chase Utley hit a two-run homer. But Glavine settled down after that, giving up five hits in 7 2-3 innings.
``You kind of walk away with an empty feeling,'' Glavine said. ``There's not a lot I can do. You just go out there and try and pitch well, give us an opportunity to win the game.''
Wright hit the first pitch he saw from Moyer into the bleachers in left to give New York a 1-0 lead in the first. Moises Alou added an RBI single in the fourth inning before the 44-year-old Moyer settled in.
``I don't why we play them so well,'' Dobbs said. ``It's a pretty big rivalry. We've been the underdog the whole season.''
Padres 5, Giants 4, 10 innings
At San Diego, Khalil Greene homered with one out in the bottom of the 10th inning off Dan Giese (0-1) to help the Padres retain their wild-card lead.
Trevor Hoffman (4-4) pitched a perfect inning for the win and San Diego closed within three games of NL West-leading Arizona.
Dodgers 7, Diamondbacks 4
At Los Angeles, Nomar Garciaparra's solo homer highlighted a four-run fifth inning for Los Angeles, which rallied three times before giving Brad Penny (16-4) another win.
Doug Davis (13-12) gave up nine hits and six runs - four earned - in 4 2-3 innings.
Takashi Saito got the final five outs for his 39th save.
Marlins 7, Rockies 6
At Denver, Jeremy Hermida drove in three runs and Dontrelle Willis (9-15) won for the second time in his past 20 starts for last-place Florida.
Matt Holliday homered off Kevin Gregg before he got three straight outs for his 30th save.
Matt Herges (4-1) gave up two runs and four hits in the seventh inning for the Rockies, who dropped 3 1/2 games behind San Diego in the wild-card standings.
Cubs 5, Cardinals 3
At St. Louis, Carlos Zambrano (16-12) allowed four hits over eight innings to help Chicago send St. Louis to its eighth straight loss.
Mark DeRosa's RBI single in the fourth put the Cubs ahead against Adam Wainwright (13-11), and Chicago won for the fifth time in seven games to open a 1 1/2-game lead over Milwaukee in the NL Central.
Reds 6, Brewers 5
At Milwaukee, Brandon Phillips drove in three runs and Adam Dunn hit his 39th homer, backing Tom Shearn (3-0) and leading Cincinnati to its fourth straight victory.
Ben Sheets (12-5) allowed four runs in the first inning en route to the loss.
Braves 8, Nationals 5, 13 innings
At Washington, Jeff Francoeur's bases-loaded single in the 13th inning drove in two runs and helped Atlanta spoil the opening game of Washington's final homestand at RFK Stadium.
Jesus Colome (4-1) took the loss while Jose Ascanio (1-1) threw two scoreless innings for the victory.
Pirates 4, Astros 3
At Houston, Jose Bautista hit a two-run homer and Ronny Paulino added a run-scoring single in the eighth inning off Chad Qualls (6-5) and Pittsburgh rallied for the win. Pittsburgh's Romulo Sanchez (1-0) got one out for his first major league victory.

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