Myers overpowers Cubs hitters

By Rob Maaddi

PHILADELPHIA – Brett Myers’ power pitching was the perfect following act to Jamie Moyer’s crafty style.

Myers tossed his first complete game in 13 months and Chase Utley hit a two-run homer to carry the Philadelphia Phillies to a 6-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs Wednesday night.

The Phillies, who have won seven of nine, entered one game behind Los Angeles in the NL wild-card standings.

Myers (12-6) gave up two runs, six hits and tied his career high with 12 strikeouts in winning his fourth straight decision. He is 6-1 in 10 starts since losing to Florida on July 28. It was his sixth career complete game and first since Aug. 20 last year.

A night earlier, Moyer allowed one run in seven innings. The 43-year-old left-hander has a much slower fastball and uses more off-speed pitches to get hitters out. Meanwhile, tandem man Myers relies on hard stuff with velocity.

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    “It’s an advantage for me because he lures hitters to sleep,” Moyer said.

    Manager Charlie Manuel likes the idea of Myers pitching behind Moyer.

    “They have two different styles. It doesn’t matter how you do it as long as you get the job done,” he said.

    After Scott Moore’s RBI single in the fourth gave the Cubs a 1-0 lead, the Phillies went ahead on Mike Lieberthal’s RBI double and Abraham Nunez’s run-scoring single in the bottom half of the inning against Les Walrond (0-1) in his second career start.

    Nunez, who had a key two-run single in Tuesday night’s win, is hitting .340 (16-for-47) since snapping an 0-for-20 slump.

    “It feels good to be helping the team in important games,” Nunez said. “I feel more comfortable up there.”

    Ryan Howard doubled off Will Ohman with one out in the fifth. With fans chanting “M-V-P!” yet again and standing for each at-bat, Howard’s bid for his major league-leading 58th homer fell several feet short. Howard went to third on Jeff Conine’s single off Jae Kuk Ryu, and then beat first baseman Moore’s throw home on Pat Burrell’s grounder to give the Phillies a 3-1 lead.

    Utley hit his career-high 29th homer in the sixth. Jimmy Rollins doubled to start the inning. One out later, Utley lofted a 1-2 pitch into the right-field seats for a 5-1 lead.

    Burrell hit his 26th homer, a drive into the Phillies’ bullpen off Roberto Novoa, to stretch it to 6-1 in the seventh.

    Aramis Ramirez drove in a run on a groundout after Freddie Bynum tripled with one out in the eighth to cut it to 6-2.

    Walrond allowed two runs and three hits, striking out six in three-plus innings in his second career start. His start was the 73rd by a rookie pitcher for the Cubs this season.

    “You wish you had all your guys and had a regular rotation, but we don’t,” Cubs manager Dusty Baker said. “So, you do the best you can with what you have.”

    Notes: Rollins struck out his first three at-bats before his double. … Utley struck out the two at-bats before he homered.