Aug 172010

August 17 Philadelphia Daily News columnist Paul Hagen

“THE WILD CARD is kind of like that roll of bills stashed in the sock drawer. Or algebra. Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.

Both the Phillies and Giants still have hopes of winning their divisions. It’s the easiest path to the postseason and eliminates the need to rely on outside help. Still, if the season ended today, both would need the wild card to advance. And, it so happens that they are in a virtual tie for the best record among non-first-place teams in the National League going into tonight’s game at Citizens Bank Park.

Few would dispute that the Phillies have the better offense. The defending National League champions are fourth in the league in runs scored (552) while San Francisco was eighth (518) going into play last night, just one ahead of the Marlins and two up on the Dodgers.

Starting pitching is the great equalizer, though. So, even though the matchups for the next three nights won’t necessarily be the same as they would be in the rotation, here’s how the Phillies and Giants compare.”

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