Shane Victorino, Hunter Pence and Joe Blanton all reside elsewhere. GM Ruben Amaro Jr basically raised the white flag at the trade deadline and the Phillies started playing for 2013.
But something happened along the way as they played for the future. The Phillies started winning while no one else in the National League has been able to distance themselves for the second wild-card spot.
The following slideshow is a step-by-step, series-by-series view on what it will take for the Phillies to travel to Atlanta for the one-game wild-card playoff on Friday, October 5th. The final standings for the last wild-card spot could very well look like this:
1. Philadelphia Phillies (85-77) (16-6 rest of the way)
2. St Louis Cardinals (84-78) (9-13)
2. Los Angeles Dodgers (84-78) (10-11)
4. Pittsburgh Pirates (82-80) (10-13)
5. Milwaukee Brewers (80-82) (11-11)
5. Arizona Diamondbacks (80-82) (11-10)