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Papelbon saves No. 17 in potential audition

Phillies closer remains perfect on season one week before Trade Deadline

CHICAGO -- Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon almost looked like a salesman Friday at Wrigley Field.

He chatted up Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer hours before he earned his 17th save in 17 opportunities in a 5-3 victory over Chicago. In between those friendly conversations with his old buddies from Boston, the Cubs' bullpen allowed the tying run to score in the ninth inning and the winning runs to score in the 10th.

Chicago fell into a tie with the Giants for the second National League Wild Card spot. They could have used that victory.

The Cubs, who are closing by committee, could have used somebody like Papelbon, although if they have any interest in him, it is minimal.

"I don't need to make a sales pitch," Papelbon said. "I asked about their families. There was nothing like, 'Hey, what do you have going on here? Come get me.' Nothing like that. Those are guys that will be baseball friends forever. I'm not going to go over there and beg and make a sales pitch to them. They know me.

"I'm just going out there to compete. There's not much else on my mind. How many more days to the Deadline?"

It's next Friday.

"We've got a week," Papelbon said. "I'm a robot, you know what I mean? I just do my job."

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast.
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