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Ramirez blasts two HRs, drives in career-best seven runs in win over Phils

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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PHILADELPHIA -- Aramis Ramirez is making a strong case for some big money if he decides to become a free agent.

The third baseman went 4-for-5 with two homers and drove in a career-best seven runs and the Chicago Cubs held off the Philadelphia Phillies for an 11-6 victory Monday night.

The second-place Phillies were eliminated from the NL East race when the New York Mets beat Florida 4-0 earlier Monday night to clinch the division title. Philadelphia entered play one game behind the wild card-leading Los Angeles Dodgers.

Pinch-hitter Jose Hernandez hit a grand slam in the fourth inning to bring Philadelphia within two runs after trailing 8-0, but five Cubs relievers held the Phillies scoreless over the last five innings.

Juan Pierre and Scott Moore hit solo homers for Chicago (62-89), which has the NL's worst record.

Ramirez has three years remaining on his contract for $33.5 million, but he can void it after this season and test his value on the free agent market. The Phillies would certainly be interested in a right-handed power hitter who plays third base and can protect slugger Ryan Howard in the lineup.

"I just go out and play my game," said Ramirez, who has 19 homers in 62 games since the All-Star break. "I let my agent do the other stuff. Whatever happens, happens."

Will Ohman relieved Chicago starter Sean Marshall and got the final two outs in the fourth. Michael Wuertz (3-1) tossed two perfect innings to get the win.

Ramirez hit three-run homers in the first inning off Jon Lieber (8-10) and in the fourth off Eude Brito. His second shot gave Chicago an 8-0 lead.

But the Phillies got six runs in the fourth. One run scored on a passed ball by Henry Blanco and Chris Coste had an RBI single, before Hernandez lined a 3-2 pitch from Marshall into the left-field seats to clear the bases.

Hernandez, acquired in a trade with Pittsburgh last month, pumped his fist before rounding first base as a towel-waving crowd cheered wildly. The same fans began chanting E-A-G-L-E-S with the Phillies batting in the sixth, even though the Eagles wasted a 17-point fourth-quarter lead in a 30-24 overtime loss to the New York Giants on Sunday.

Moore connected against Brian Sanches in the fifth to make it 9-6 and the Phillies couldn't rally again.

"We had a bad game," manager Charlie Manuel said. "We have 12 more to play. This one is gone. We have to keep going."

Lieber, a 17-game winner in his first season with the Phillies, failed to reach the sixth inning for the seventh time in 25 starts. He gave up four earned runs and five hits in 2 1-3 innings.

Lieber didn't speak to reporters after the game.

"I've seen his better stuff," Manuel said.

Marshall gave up six runs and five hits in 3 1/3 innings. Cubs starters had thrown 25 1/3 scoreless innings before the Phillies scored in the fourth.

Ramirez drove a 3-2 pitch into the left-center field seats to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead before Lieber recorded an out. Lieber dropped, then fumbled Pierre's leadoff bouncer for an error and Ryan Theriot reached on a bunt single, before Ramirez went deep.

Pierre led off the third with his third homer and Ramirez had an RBI single to give the Cubs a 5-0 lead.

"He's been swinging the bat great," Cubs manager Dusty Baker said of Ramirez. "He's really finished strong."

Notes

  • The Phillies won a coin toss and would host a one-game playoff against the Dodgers or San Diego Padres if they were tied for the wild-card spot.
  • Ramirez has a nine-game hitting streak. He's batting .500 (17-for-34) in that span. Ramirez became the sixth Cub to have 35 homers and 35 doubles in a season. He has 17 career multihomer games, four this year.
  • Cubs SS Ronny Cedeno extended his hitting streak to 12 games.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Philly's Eude Brito watches Aramis Ramirez trot the bases in the fourth, his second HR of the game.  (AP)
Philly's Eude Brito watches Aramis Ramirez trot the bases in the fourth, his second HR of the game. (AP)

Players of the Game
Philadelphia

J. Hernandez
AB 1
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 4
Chicago

A. Ramirez
AB 5
R 2
H 4
HR 2
RBI 7
 
Chicago Cubs
Juan Pierre, CF6211004 .290
Ryan Theriot, 2B5330101 .330
Aramis Ramirez, 3B5247001 .293
Jacque Jones, RF4010112 .285
Angel Pagan, LF5000004 .259
Henry Blanco, C4000102 .265
Scott Moore, 1B5221012 .263
    John Mabry, 1B0000000 .207
Ronny Cedeno, SS5121020 .249
Sean Marshall, P2100001 .132
    Will Ohman, P00000001.000
   a- Buck Coats, PH1010000 .182
    Michael Wuertz, P0000000 .000
   b- Geovany Soto, PH1010000 .294
    Scott Eyre, P0000000 .000
    Bob Howry, P00000001.000
   c- Matt Murton, PH1011000 .297
    Ryan Dempster, P0000000 .000
Totals441116113417 
a-doubled for Ohman in the 5th
b-singled for Wuertz in the 7th
c-singled for Howry in the 9th
Batting
2B - Ryan Theriot (8, Lieber), Buck Coats (1, Sanches)
3B - Ronny Cedeno (6, Madson)
HR - Juan Pierre (3, Lieber), Aramis Ramirez 2 (35, Lieber, Brito), Scott Moore (2, Sanches)
RBI - Juan Pierre (37), Aramis Ramirez 7 (110), Scott Moore (3), Ronny Cedeno (38), Matt Murton (59)
2-OUT RBI - Aramis Ramirez 3 (36)
SB - Juan Pierre (52, 2nd base off Lieber/Coste), Ryan Theriot (10, 2nd base off Condrey/Coste), Angel Pagan (4, 2nd base off White/Coste)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
PB - Henry Blanco (2)
Chicago Cubs
Sean Marshall 3.1566231 5.64
Will Ohman 0.2000210 4.19
Michael Wuertz (H,7; W,3-1) 2000000 2.83
Scott Eyre (H,18) 1100030 2.90
Bob Howry (H,20) 1100020 3.24
Ryan Dempster 1000010 4.84
HBP - Howard (by Sean Marshall)
Pitches-Strikes - Sean Marshall 60-32, Will Ohman 14-6, Michael Wuertz 15-10, Scott Eyre 19-13, Bob Howry 17-13, Ryan Dempster 10-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Sean Marshall 1-6, Michael Wuertz 3-3, Ryan Dempster 1-1
Batters Faced - Sean Marshall 18, Will Ohman 4, Michael Wuertz 6, Scott Eyre 4, Bob Howry 4, Ryan Dempster 3
Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins, SS4000111 .273
Shane Victorino, CF4000112 .283
Chase Utley, 2B4010111 .299
Ryan Howard, 1B3100024 .312
Jeff Conine, RF4110011 .269
Pat Burrell, LF4110010 .253
Chris Coste, C4111010 .315
Abraham Nunez, 3B3120100 .209
Jon Lieber, P0000000 .083
    Eude Brito, P1000011 .000
   a- Jose Hernandez, PH1114000 .268
    Brian Sanches, P0000000 .000
    Rick White, P0000000 .000
   b- Danny Sandoval, PH1000000 .188
    Aaron Fultz, P0000000 .000
    Clay Condrey, P0000000 .000
    Matt Smith, P0000000 .000
   c- David Dellucci, PH1000011 .291
    Ryan Madson, P0000000 .182
Totals3467541011 
a-homered for Brito in the 4th
b-popped out for White in the 6th
c-struck out for Smith in the 8th
Batting
2B - Abraham Nunez (7, Howry)
HR - Jose Hernandez (3, Marshall)
RBI - Chris Coste (27), Jose Hernandez 4 (19)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
E - Jon Lieber (3, ), Abraham Nunez (6, )
Philadelphia Phillies
Jon Lieber (L,8-10) 2.1554012 5.03
Eude Brito 1.2333211 7.36
Brian Sanches 1211011 6.52
Rick White 1100100 5.16
Aaron Fultz 1100000 4.79
Clay Condrey 0.1100000 3.57
Matt Smith 0.2000010 0.00
Ryan Madson 1322000 5.84
IBB - Blanco by Eude Brito
Pitches-Strikes - Jon Lieber 48-32, Eude Brito 34-16, Brian Sanches 11-9, Rick White 19-10, Aaron Fultz 15-9, Clay Condrey 9-7, Matt Smith 13-9, Ryan Madson 18-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jon Lieber 3-4, Eude Brito 1-3, Brian Sanches 1-1, Rick White 3-0, Aaron Fultz 3-0, Clay Condrey 1-0, Matt Smith 1-0, Ryan Madson 1-2
Batters Faced - Jon Lieber 13, Eude Brito 10, Brian Sanches 5, Rick White 5, Aaron Fultz 4, Clay Condrey 2, Matt Smith 2, Ryan Madson 6
Game Information
Attendance - 31101
Game Time - 3:00
Temperature - 78
Umpires - Home - Jerry Crawford, First Base - Brian O'Nora, Second Base - Phil Cuzzi, Third Base - Chuck Meriwether