The Phillies took the lead and then kept pounding. They topped off a 12-5 rout of Atlanta with a five-run ninth inning as Jason Michaels hit a three-run homer to finish with a career-high five RBI.
With wins in the first two games of the three-game series, the Phillies have their first three-game winning streak since April 16-18.
"I would like for our team to never be satisfied," Manuel said. "Three games is good, but of course we'd like a bigger one that that."
Still in last place in the NL East, the Phillies have pulled to within two games of .500. They have played 30 road games, the most in the major leagues, but on Tuesday they will begin a stretch of 13 straight at home and 35 of 48 at Citizens Bank Park.
"We need to take advantage of that," Michaels said. "It's going to be a big stretch."
Pat Burrell was 2-for-4 with three RBI in his return to the Philadelphia lineup after missing Friday night's game with a sore left wrist. Placido Polanco had four hits, and added an RBI in a four-run fourth inning for the Phillies, who will go for the sweep of the Braves on Sunday.
"They are getting it together," Atlanta manager Bobby Cox. "(Jim) Thome is back, and that makes a big difference. It's going to be a tight race."
Thome was 1-for-3 with two walks and two runs scored.
Philadelphia broke it open in the ninth inning on David Bell's two-run single off Adam Bernero, who walked the bases loaded, and Michaels' three-run homer against Matt Childers that made it 12-5. After the game, Childers was designated for assignment.
Jon Lieber (6-4) gave up nine hits and five runs, four earned, in five innings but was backed by the Phillies' 16-hit attack. Philadelphia gave Lieber leads of 3-1 and 7-3 in the first four innings.
Braves starter Horacio Ramirez (3-5) left with the bases loaded in the fourth inning.
Ramirez struck out Bobby Abreu, the last batter he faced, but Cox brought in right-hander Kevin Gryboski to face Burrell who foiled the strategy by lining a two-run single to left field for a 7-3 lead.
The Braves cut it to 7-5 off Lieber in the fifth. Back-to-back doubles by Giles and Chipper Jones scored one run. After a single by Adam LaRoche, Jones scored when Andruw Jones hit into a double play.
Ramirez gave up nine hits and seven runs -- both season highs -- in 3 2/3 innings. He walked two batters and had two strikeouts in his first loss in four career starts against Philadelphia.
"He didn't have his really good stuff," Cox said.
Ramirez's ERA rose to 5.65.
"I don't consider it a setback," he said. "I'm disappointed we lost, but they're a pretty good team. ... they don't play like a last-place team. They are really tough to pitch to. They have a lot of contact hitters. They put the ball in play, and when they do that, good things happen."
The Braves turned double plays to end the second and third innings, keeping Ramirez in the game.
Philadelphia took the lead in the second. Thome walked and moved to third on Bell's double, and both scored on Michaels' single to center. The Phillies went ahead 3-1 in the third on three straight singles by Polanco, Abreu and Burrell.
The Braves scored an unearned run in the first when Rafael Furcal reached on a throwing error by Lieber and came home on a sacrifice fly by LaRoche.
Atlanta tied it 3-3 in the third. Furcal hit an infield single, stole second and scored on Marcus Giles' double. Giles scored on another sacrifice fly by LaRoche.
- Michaels made a diving catch in center field to rob Furcal of a hit in the fourth inning.
- Braves C Eddie Perez, on the 15-day DL with right shoulder tendinitis, joined the grounds crew that dragged the infield between the third and fourth innings. Perez wore the grounds crew's uniform -- blue shorts and red shirt.
- OF Andruw Jones' third-inning single was his 1,300th career hit. He is the fourth Atlanta player to reach the milestone.
- Chipper Jones' fifth-inning double gave him sole possession of second place on the Braves' career list with 339. He had been tied with Eddie Mathews.