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PHILS CLINCH NLCS BERTH!

Joe Blanton subdued the Brewers, and Pat Burrell blasted them, as the Phillies defeated Milwaukee, 6-2. The Phils won the best-of-five National League Division Series, 3-1, and will play the Los Angeles Dodgers for the National League championship. Game one is Thursday at Citizens Bank Park.

Burrell hit two home runs in the game. The first was the gamebreaker, a three-run stunner off Jeff Suppan with two strikes and two outs in the third inning. It gave the good guys a 4-0 lead and settled things down. Burrell then knocked a big insurance homer in the eighth inning. After a second-half slump, Burrell redeemed himself tremendously with just two swings.

Blanton was beautiful, striking out seven in six innings while giving up just one run — a no-doubter by Prince Fielder. Blanton threw first-pitch strikes, had Milwaukee hitters swinging early and late, and worked efficiently after a high-count first inning. As far as midseason acquisitions, Blanton has come up huge.

Blanton set the bullpen for three paint-by-numbers innings. Ryan Madson took two of them and gave up just a garbage run, while Brad Lidge closed out the ninth for the third time in the series.

Back to the offense. Jayson Werth backed Burrell’s first bomb with a solo home run, while Jimmy Rollins led off the contest with a longball. Meanwhile, Greg Dobbs contributed with two hits in a starting spot. With Chase Utley and Ryan Howard slumping in the NLDS, the rest of the offense has picked it up. And Burrell joined them in game four, leading the Phils to the NLCS for the first time since 1993.

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