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Everybody Hits! Phillies Pound Braves 14-1, Head Into All Star Break With 3.5 Game Division Lead

The Phillies pounded the Braves for 20 hits and a season high tying 14 runs as they took the rubber game of their series and head into the All Star Break with a 3.5 game lead in the NL East. Starter Cole Hamels matched the Phillies offensive explosion with a stellar performance himself tossing eight innings of of 3-hit, one run ball en route to his 11th win of the season.

Hamels would end up retiring the last 12 batters he faced. Kyle Kendrick pitched the ninth as the Phillies finished the first half in style.

As good as the pitching was, the explosion of the Phillies offense is the real story. Every Phillies starter had at least one hit, John Mayberry Jr set career highs with four RBI and three hits, as did Domonic Brown (3 hits), while Raul Ibanez equaled a career high with 6 RBI of his own, including his 12th HR of the year.

Ibanez also dazzled with the glove, robbing Nate McLouth of a HR with a leaping grab over the left field wall.

Michael Martinez was also stellar in the field and was 4-4 at the plate today, raising his season average from .192 to .229.

After the game, Phils skipper Charlie Manuel said what many us were thinking, "I didn’t want the day to end really, if you want to know the truth." Unfortunately, real life is not like a Buffalo Wild Wings commercial.

There really couldn’t be a more perfect end to the first half of the season. Great starting pitching performance, offensive explosion and best of all, it was against the Braves. The Phils now finish the first half with a 3.5 game lead in the NL East and the best record in baseball at 57-34.

Final - 7.10.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Atlanta Braves 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 1
Philadelphia Phillies 0 1 2 1 0 0 6 4 X 14 20 1
WP: Cole Hamels (11 - 4)
LP: Derek Lowe (5 - 7)

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NL East Standings

Philadelphia 57 34 .626 0 Won 1
Atlanta 54 38 .586 3.5 Lost 1
New York 46 44 .511 10.5 Lost 1
Washington 46 46 .500 11.5 Won 1
Florida 43 48 .472 14 Won 5

(updated 7.10.2011 at 4:53 PM EDT)