Bautista single lifts Phillies past Nationals
The Phillies traded for Jose Bautista earlier this week to have his veteran bat act as a late-inning threat off the bench. The deal paid off on Wednesday night as Bautista lashed a go-ahead RBI single in the seventh inning to lead the Phillies to an 8-6 victory over the Nationals.

It was a must-win for the Phillies. The victory, coupled with a Braves loss, trimmed the deficit in the NL East to 3 1/2 games.

Carlos Santana hit a grand slam with two outs in the fifth, giving the Phillies a 6-5 advantage. Roman Quinn finished with three hits in the winning effort.

Starter Jake Arrieta struggled with his command, surrendering four runs on four hits and a trio of walks over three innings. The outing matched his shortest of the season.

"The effort I gave tonight wasn't acceptable," Arrieta told reporters afterward (see video). "I expect a lot more, as well as my teammates, do from my starts. That's frustrating. But winning that game is a relief, especially moving into an off-day with a really good Chicago team coming in here to play this weekend. Reboot tomorrow, enjoy the off-day and be ready for the weekend."

Manager Gabe Kapler used seven relievers in the contest. Seranthony Dominguez notched the win and Tommy Hunter tossed the final two innings to record his third save of the season.

The Phillies return to action Friday to open a three-game set with the Cubs at Citizens Bank Park. Nick Pivetta is set to start the opener for the Phils while the Cubs counter with veteran Jose Quintana.

With 29 games remaining on the schedule, every game is pivotal for the Phils.

According to Fangraphs, the club has a 40-percent chance to reach the postseason with less than a two-percent shot to win the World Series. Most books have similar expectation with the Phillies currently listed as the underdogs to win the division. There are times when betting on an underdog could yield some pocket money and some of these sportsbooks reviews cover important details like which site has the best odds for underdogs. Sitting just 3 1/2 games out with seven to still go against Atlanta, make sure the bet you make is worth your while.
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