NEW YORK -- When Jimmy Rollins saw Mets reliever Duaner Sanchez come out to pitch the ninth inning instead of starter Johan Santana or closer Billy Wagner, he went straight to the batting tee to stay loose.
It didn't matter that he was due up sixth and the Philadelphia Phillies trailed by three runs. He thought they had a chance. He was right.
Philadelphia feasted on New York's makeshift bullpen for six runs with Wagner unavailable because of an injury, and Rollins hit a go-ahead two-run double to help the Phillies to an 8-6 victory Tuesday night to take back sole possession of first place in the NL East.
"It started last year," Rollins said, referring to the team's comeback from seven games back with 17 to play to win the East.
"You never give up."
After Santana pitched eight dominant innings, the Mets had to do without Wagner, who has muscle spasms around his left shoulder.
When Santana faced the Phillies on July 4, he gave up two runs but lost. Tuesday, he gave up an RBI single to Jayson Werth in the first and Shane Victorino's homer in the seventh.