The Phillies won two games Sunday and slipped closer to elimination.
Yes, it's true. While most of what you heard was overwhelming positivity about a potential miracle run at the second wild card berth, the Phillies' tragic number dipped to 17. Any combination of 17 St. Louis wins and Philadelphia losses eliminates the Phillies. The Cardinals won Sunday.
Once "7 back with 17 to go" entered the lexicon of a city, the wildest of dreams are harbored. The Phillies trail St. Louis by six games with 22 to play. This is cake, right?
Here is reality: If the Cardinals merely play .500 baseball (11-11) for the remainder of the season, the Phillies must finish 18-4, an .818 clip. Even then, with two other teams ahead of the Phillies, it could take more than 18-4.