Phillies gain ground on wild card-leading Brewers

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - September 13, 2008 The Phillies can tie Milwaukee for the top spot by sweeping a day-night doubleheader on Sunday. Philadelphia entered the day three games behind the NL East-leading New York Mets, who played a twinbill against the Atlanta Braves.

Hamels (13-9) allowed two runs and six hits, rebounding from a poor outing at Shea Stadium last Sunday. Hamels had a chance to put the Phillies in a tie with the Mets, but gave up five runs in a 6-3 loss.

Struggling Milwaukee has lost nine of 12, including two straight in Philly. The Brewers are trying to avoid another late-season collapse. They built an 8½-game lead in the NL Central by late June last year only to finish two games behind the Chicago Cubs.

Brewers starter Manny Parra (10-8) didn't make it out of the second inning. The left-hander gave up five runs and seven hits in 1 1-3 innings.

Rollins sparked Philadelphia's inconsistent offense with leadoff hits in the first and second. He finished 3-for-5, falling a triple short of the cycle, with two RBIs and three runs.

The reigning NL MVP singled in the first and scored on Chase Utley's double to right-center. Jayson Werth singled in Utley and Shane Victorino added an RBI single for a 3-0 lead.

Rollins doubled in the second and went to third on Utley's infield single that appeared to bounce off his foot before rolling fair. After Werth walked, Ryan Howard hit a two-run single to center for a 5-0 lead. Howard leads the majors with 131 RBIs.

Hamels got more runs in the first two innings than in any of his losses this season. The Phillies have averaged 2.1 runs in Hamels' nine losses, including 1-0, 2-0 and 3-0 defeats.

Milwaukee sliced the deficit to 5-2 with a pair of gift-wrapped runs in the fifth. With two on and two outs, Jason Kendall lofted a fly ball to left field that was misjudged by Pat Burrell. The ball landed beyond Burrell's reach for a two-run double.

The usually cucumber-cool Hamels reacted in disgust to Burrell's gaffe, but retired pinch-hitter Angel Salome to end the inning. Rollins hit his 11th homer, a two-run shot, off Carlos Villanueva in the sixth.

Ryan Braun connected off Chad Durbin in the eighth for his 35th home run.

Notes: Brewers hitting coach Jim Skaalen was ejected in the fourth for arguing that a pitch hit Prince Fielder instead of his bat. ... Parra is 2-6 since the All-Star break. ... A crowd of 45,105 was the 46th sellout at Citizens Bank Park this year. ... Hamels leads the NL in innings pitched (214 1-3).

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