Pedro Martinez was considered finished. Then he put on the Phillies pinstripes and made everyone remember how good he once was.
And still is.
The 37-year-old is healthy and pitching like his old Cy Young self and giving the Phillies every reason to believe he can keep this going the rest of September _ and October.
Martinez tossed six-hit ball and threw 130 pitches in eight shutout innings, leading NL East-leading Philadelphia to a 1-0 win over the New York Mets and a doubleheader sweep on Sunday night.
"I came here with the mentality that, in the last quarter of the season, I could help this team when it matters probably the most," he said. "I think today was a good example of what really mattered _ to give the bullpen a rest, to help your teammates when you're needed."
Ryan Madson worked a scoreless ninth for his eighth save after Brad Lidge finished the opener, won 5-4 by the Phillies.
Martinez (5-0) was still going strong when he hit 90 mph and fanned David Wright for the first out in the eighth and officially made it his longest outing of the year.
The 32nd straight sellout crowd chanted "Let's Go Pedro!" and wildly cheered every strike from the former hated Met. Phillies manager Charlie Manuel visited with Martinez after he gave up a two-out double to Daniel Murphy.
The fans roared when Manuel jogged back to the dugout with Martinez still on the mound.
"I was keeping him in anyway," Manuel said. "I had to see what he was going to say."
Tim Redding (2-6) was just as effective over six innings and retired 14 straight at one point, allowing only Chase Utley's RBI single in the first inning.
Martinez could be 7-0 if he didn't run into some bad luck with rain and have two starts cut short. He's pitched at least six innings in each of his last three starts, allowing just four runs. Martinez has a 6-2 career postseason record and would be a good fit in the Phillies rotation if they win their third straight NL East title.
In the opener, Kyle Kendrick (1-1) pitched into the eighth and Victorino and Ben Francisco each homered.
Lidge, temporarily demoted from his Phillies closer role this week, gave up two runs in the ninth but finished for his 29th save in 39 opportunities.
The Mets were mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.
"I have a lot of respect for them, regardless of what happened, why I'm not with the Mets," Martinez said. "It doesn't matter anymore. It's all business. I just have to let it go."
Braves 9, Cardinals 2
At St. Louis, Javier Vazquez took a shutout into the ninth inning, and Atlanta roughed up Chris Carpenter to complete a three-game sweep.
Vazquez allowed a leadoff single to Skip Schumaker and then retired the next 17 batters before Schumaker reached on an infield single in the sixth. It was the 25th complete game of Vazquez's career and his second of the season.
Carpenter allowed seven earned runs on nine hits in six innings.
Giants 7, Dodgers 2
At San Francisco, Brad Penny pitched seven strong innings to beat his former club, Juan Uribe hit a two-run homer and the Giants avoided a sweep.
Los Angeles' lead in the NL West remained at three over Colorado while the Giants moved within 4 1/2 games of the Rockies in the NL wild-card race.
Padres 7, Rockies 3
At San Diego, Tony Gwynn drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in a three-run sixth inning for the Padres.
Jason Marquis (15-11) carried a 3-2 lead into the sixth when San Diego rallied. Marquis walked four batters in the inning, including one with the bases loaded.
The Rockies lead in the wild-card race fell to 4 1/2 games.
Pirates 2, Astros 1
At Houston, Paul Maholm pitched eight shutout innings and Pittsburgh snapped a 13-game road losing streak.
Ryan Doumit homered and Garrett Jones had an RBI single for the last-place Pirates, who had dropped five in a row overall.
Matt Capps allowed Lance Berkman's leadoff homer in the ninth before earning his 25th save.
Cubs 5, Reds 2
At Chicago, Ted Lilly pitched six scoreless innings and Derrek Lee homered and singled twice. Lilly (12-8) allowed six hits, walked two and struck out seven in winning his seventh consecutive home decision.
Nationals 7, Marlins 2, 8 1/2 innings
At Miami, John Lannan won for the first time in seven starts and Pete Orr hit his first home run of the season for Washington.
The game was called after a 53-minute delay in the bottom of the ninth inning. The Marlins had a runner on base with nobody out. Rain also halted play for 2 hours, 10 minutes in the sixth.
Lannan (9-11) allowed one run and six hits in five innings. He did not return after the first delay.
Brewers 5, Diamondbacks 3
At Phoenix, Prince Fielder homered to tie Milwaukee's single-season RBI record, Alcides Escobar had a two-run single in a four-run seventh inning and the Brewers completed a three-game sweep.
Fielder's fourth-inning home run, his 39th of the season, gave him a major league-leading 126 RBIs and tied him with Cecil Cooper for the Brewers' franchise record, set in 1983.
Trevor Hoffman got his 32nd save in 35 chances with a perfect ninth.