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Lidle survives five errors for victory

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Cory Lidle can thank Bobby Abreu and
Philadelphia's offense for this victory. He sure didn't get any
help from the left side of his infield.

Abreu hit his eighth homer in nine games, helping the
Philadelphia Phillies overcome five errors in a 7-5 win over the
St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday night.

Abreu's solo homer in the first inning was his 10th in May and
extended his hitting streak to 10 games. Abreu drove in two runs
and has RBI in nine straight games. He's also scored a run in nine
straight games.

"What he's doing right now is amazing," Phillies manager
Charlie Manuel said.

Lidle (3-3) allowed four runs -- just one earned -- and six hits
in six innings. Ryan Madson pitched two scoreless innings, and
Billy Wagner finished for his 10th save in 11 chances, giving up
David Eckstein's first homer since Sept. 26.

Third baseman David Bell made three errors, shortstop Jimmy
Rollins had two and the Phillies allowed three unearned runs.
Philadelphia had committed the fewest errors in the National League
(15) coming in, though Bell had five. It was the Phillies' first
five-error game since July 15, 2002.

"That's kind of how it goes sometimes," Manuel said. "We're
very fortunate Cory pitched over our mistakes."

Jeff Suppan (3-4) allowed seven runs -- five earned -- and seven
hits in three-plus innings for the Cardinals, who lost for the
third time in nine games.

"It wasn't a good night for me," Suppan said. "I put the team
in a big hole."

The last-place Phillies have won three of four and opened a
critical 12-game stretch with games against three first-place teams
(St. Louis, Baltimore and Atlanta), and one second-place club
(Florida).

Philadelphia could get first baseman Jim Thome back in time for
this weekend's series at Baltimore. Thome, on the disabled list
since May 3 with a strained lower back, will head to Florida for
two days of extended spring training and could be activated Friday.

Abreu and Pat Burrell hit back-to-back homers off Suppan in the
first inning, and the Phillies scored five more runs in the second.

Ryan Howard led off the second with an opposite-field homer to
left for a 3-1 lead, then the Phillies loaded the bases on two hits
and a walk. Endy Chavez hit a grounder that scooted under shortstop
Eckstein's legs for a 5-1 lead, Abreu added a sacrifice fly and
Chavez scored on a wild pitch.

"The ball stayed down. I don't think it was a double play
ball," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "Errors are part of
the game."

The Phillies chased Suppan after he allowed a leadoff single in
the fourth.

Bell's third error of the game in the fourth -- he couldn't
handle a grounder that took a high bounce -- could have ended the
inning if handled cleanly. Instead, two runners were on and Albert
Pujols hit a two-run double off the top of the left-field wall to
make it 7-4.

"If I let up and I let some of those errors get to me, it might
have been a different ballgame," Lidle said. "They're a team that
can come back and score a lot of runs quick. I just battled through
and it's a good thing we scored a lot of runs."

Bell couldn't come up with the ball on a backhanded stop in the
first inning and he made a throwing error in the second. It was
Bell's first career three-error game.

"For whatever reason, after I made an error I was tentative,
and I learned a long time ago not to play like that" Bell said.
"Tonight was a bad night, but we won the game and that's all that
matters."

The defense settled down after the fourth, and Lidle retired his
final seven batters before he was lifted for a pinch hitter in the
sixth.

Game notes
Thome will play in Clearwater, Fla., on Wednesday and
Thursday. ... CF Kenny Lofton, on the DL with a strained right
hamstring, also is close to making a return to the lineup, possibly
as early as Wednesday. ... C Mike Lieberthal returned to the
starting lineup after missing three games with an injury to his
right ring finger. Lieberthal singled in the second for his 1,000th
career hit and got the two at-bats needed for next year's $7.5
million option to kick in. ... NASCAR star Carl Edwards
participated in a skit with the Phillie Phanatic.