Aramis Ramirez missed 11 games earlier this month with a sore groin and is still running the bases at less than full speed.
That's all right, though, when all he needs is his home run trot.
"Sometimes you don't have to run to play the game," Ramirez said after hitting three homers to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 10-7 comeback win yesterday at home over the slumping Philadelphia Phillies.
Ramirez had the second three-homer game of his career. The Phillies' Bobby Abreu and Pat Burrell homered twice each off Mark Prior, and Derrek Lee also went deep for Chicago.
The Cubs trailed 6-3 when Ramirez led off the sixth with his second homer off Eric Milton, who pitched eight innings of no-hit ball five days ago against the Cubs.
The homer ignited the Cubs' rally and six of the next seven batters singled during a five-run inning.
Ramirez hit solo homers off Milton in the second and sixth innings and another bases-empty shot off Roberto Hernandez in the seventh.
"I feel pretty good right now and just need to keep working and keep doing it and hit a career high in home runs this season," said Ramirez, who now has 21. He hit 34 for Pittsburgh three years ago.
Milton gave up eight hits and six runs in 51/3 innings, including three homers, as the Phillies lost their fifth straight.
Abreu, who had five RBI, hit his second of the game and 22nd of the season, a three-run shot in the fifth that made it 6-3.
* BRAVES 3, METS 1: Marcus Giles had three hits and drove in the go-ahead run in the third inning, leading Mike Hampton and Atlanta past visiting New York.
The Mets lost for the 12th time in their past 17 games and fell seven games behind the Braves in the NL East. Atlanta is 19-6 in July and has a 41/2-game lead on Florida and Philadelphia.
Hampton (7-8) worked seven innings to improve to 5-0 in July, joining fellow starters Russ Ortiz (5-0) and Jaret Wright (3-0) with unbeaten records in the month.
* ROCKIES 4, DIAMONDBACKS 1: Randy Johnson allowed four runs and struck out six in what may have been his last start for visiting Arizona, but was beaten by Colorado's Jason Jennings for the second start in a row.
Jennings (10-8) allowed one run in seven innings and Matt Holliday hit a two-run triple in the Rockies' four-run seventh off Johnson (10-9).
* CARDINALS 7, GIANTS 4: Jim Edmonds hit a two-run triple during a six-run sixth inning that helped visiting St. Louis overcome Barry Bonds's 685th career home run.
Tony Womack tripled to start the Cardinals' decisive rally, and Mike Matheny added a two-run double as St. Louis rallied from an early three-run deficit for its fifth straight win.
* DODGERS 12, PADRES 3: In San Diego, Milton Bradley homered twice and Jeff Weaver pitched eight innings of four-hit ball to help Los Angeles take a 31/2-game lead over the Padres in the West.
The Dodgers completed a trade during the game that sent catcher Paul Lo Duca, right fielder Juan Encarnacion and reliever Guillermo Mota to Florida for pitcher Brad Penny, first baseman Hee Seop Choi and minor league pitcher Bill Murphy.
* EXPOS 9, MARLINS 0: In Miami, Livan Hernandez pitched a three-hitter and Brad Wilkerson and Nick Johnson homered to help Montreal spoil Josh Beckett's third return from the disabled list.
* BREWERS 5, PIRATES 0: In Milwaukee, Doug Davis allowed four hits in seven innings and Brady Clark hit a two-run double to lead the Brewers. Davis (10-9) snapped a personal three-game losing streak.
* ASTROS 2, REDS 2, SUSP.: Jeff Bagwell singled home the tying run for Houston moments before a third rain delay resulted in a suspended game in the sixth inning in Cincinnati. The game will be picked up today with the score tied at 2 and two Astros on base in the top of the sixth. The regularly scheduled game will then follow.