The Phillies (81-73) have won nine of 11 and moved a half-game ahead of Los Angeles in the NL wild-card standings after the Dodgers' 9-3 loss to the Diamondbacks later Saturday night.
Howard, who leads the majors with 58 homers, was 1-for-2. He
singled in the third, was intentionally walked with two outs and a
runner on first in the fourth, and struck out with runners at first
and third in the sixth.
Howard was intentionally walked again in the eighth after a
passed ball put runners on second and third with none out. Conine
followed with a two-run double that was misplayed by right fielder
Joe Borchard, giving the Phillies an 8-4 lead.
Lieber (9-10) allowed two runs and seven hits, striking out six
for his fifth win in six decisions.
Borchard's two-run homer off Ryan Madson in the eighth pulled
Florida to 6-4. But Madson got the final out of the inning and the
Phillies added two insurance runs in the bottom half.
The Marlins' playoff hopes are fading following their eighth
loss in 11 games. Florida, which became the first team in history
to achieve a winning record after being 20 games below .500, fell
"They got the big hits when they needed to and Lieber shut us
down," Marlins manager Joe Girardi said.
The Phillies scored three runs in the first inning against Brian
Rollins and Victorino hit consecutive singles. Utley followed
with an RBI single to make it 1-0. Howard was hit by a pitch,
drawing a warning for both teams from plate umpire Bob Davidson
because Florida's Miguel Cabrera was plunked in the top of the
Ruiz made it 4-0 with an RBI double off the wall in left in the
third. Utley and Howard hit consecutive singles to start the
inning. Moehler again retired Dellucci and Burrell, but Ruiz came
through with another key hit.
"He came up with big hits," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel
said about the rookie. "He's getting confidence in himself."
Alfredo Amezaga drove in Florida's first two runs with a
groundout in the fourth and a two-out single in the sixth.
Rollins homered to right-center in the sixth and pinch-hitter
Conine added an RBI single in the inning to make it 6-2.
"That's how you play winning baseball, everybody
contributing," Rollins said.
Moehler allowed four runs and eight hits in 3 1/3 innings.
Rollins has a career-best 74 RBI. ... Ramirez, a rookie
shortstop, made his 25th error in the third inning. ... The
Phillies are a season-best eight games over .500 and 40-39 at home.
... Victorino and Utley each tied a career high with four hits.