PHOENIX - It's over.

The Phillies last night finished a taxing 10-game road trip with a 9-3 comeback win over the Diamondbacks. This is their first scheduled day off in 23 days.

They can use it.

"I think it's great we've got this day off," third baseman Chase Utley said. "We need it. We can let guys heal a little. It'll be nice to get back to Philly. Relax. For a change."

The six losses on the trip only accented the tense trials of the journey:

* National League MVP Ryan Howard aggravated a left thigh strain suffered in spring training, trying to score from first base Friday in San Francisco. Howard did not start any of the trip's final three games here, in hopes that resting the nagging injury would help end his seasonlong funk. Before his grand-slam, pinch-hit homer yesterday, he was 3-for-23 with 12 strikeouts on the trip, dropping his average 23 points, to .198.

* All-Star closer Tom Gordon flew back from Atlanta on May 2 to have a cortisone injection in his inflamed right rotator cuff. Shoulder trouble cost him 3 weeks last season. Now on the 15-day disabled list, Gordon has blown three of eight save opportunities.

* Middle reliever Ryan Madson righted himself - just in time to hit the DL with a nagging left oblique strain.

* Middle reliever Antonio Alfonseca had his worst stretch of the season, allowing seven runs in 3 2/3 innings.

* Leftfielder Pat Burrell went 2-for-28, dropping his average from .304 to .237. He had 11 walks, but drove in only two runs.

Also, starter Freddy Garcia ran into a Giants groundskeeper's cart in centerfield on Sunday, placing in question his start here Monday. He started and pitched fine.

Manager Charlie Manuel had a rough go, too.

Trailing by one on Monday, he elected to pull Garcia for a pinch-hitter with no outs in the seventh inning. The Phils tied the score, but Manuel got burned when the bullpen lost the game.

Tied on Tuesday, Manuel let good-hitting pitcher Adam Eaton hit for himself with two on and two out in the seventh. He got burned when Eaton grounded out, then allowed a two-out homer in the bottom of the seventh that was the game's difference.

"It seemed like we had a lot of things going on," Manuel said. "I felt like we dealt with it pretty well."

They had a lot of heartbreak to deal with.

The trip began with a three-run walkoff loss in Atlanta - a slider hung by Alfonseca to Andruw Jones. Three of the losses were by one run, including the last two.

"It's rather obvious we have not done very well in one-run games," said starter Jamie Moyer, referencing the team's 1-6 record, worst in the majors. "To me, that's why we are where we are - around .500."

"We haven't played badly. Just the one play, the one pitch, isn't being made," pitching coach Rich Dubee said. "The day off is needed, not just from the physical side, but from the mental side. Just to get away from it for 24 hours."

Trivial

Not only were Jamie Moyer and Randy Johnson the oldest lefty tandem to oppose each other in major league history, at a combined 88 years, 48 days old, they also set the record for elapsed time between meetings: 17 years, 230 days (all according to Elias Sports Bureau). They squared off Sept. 21, 1989, when Johnson went eight innings and allowed three runs for the Mariners and beat the Rangers; Moyer lasted 3 2/3 innings and gave up five runs.

Not only were Jamie Moyer and Randy Johnson the oldest lefty tandem to oppose each other in major league history, at a combined 88 years, 48 days old, they also set the record for elapsed time between meetings: 17 years, 230 days (all according to Elias Sports Bureau). They squared off Sept. 21, 1989, when Johnson went eight innings and allowed three runs for the Mariners and beat the Rangers; Moyer lasted 3 2/3 innings and gave up five runs.

Asked whether he recalled that day in '89, Moyer replied, "No. Do you?"

Phillers

Righthander Jon Lieber, scheduled to start tomorrow against the Cubs, suffered a cut on a finger on his pitching hand and will be pushed back 2 days. Cole Hamels will pitch tomorrow, followed by Freddy Garcia . . . The Phils sold the rights of lefthander Brian Mazone to the Samsung Lions, of Korea. Mazone, 30, was 3-2 with a 2.21 ERA in six starts with Triple A Ottawa. To replace Mazone, they signed righthander Jason Anderson, of the Somerset Patriots, of the independent Atlantic League. Anderson, 27, was 5-2 with a 3.29 ERA in 60 relief appearances at Triple A Portland last year . . . Chase Utley was hit by a pitch for the 11th time, tops in the majors. *

Righthander Jon Lieber, scheduled to start tomorrow against the Cubs, suffered a cut on a finger on his pitching hand and will be pushed back 2 days. Cole Hamels will pitch tomorrow, followed by Freddy Garcia . . . The Phils sold the rights of lefthander Brian Mazone to the Samsung Lions, of Korea. Mazone, 30, was 3-2 with a 2.21 ERA in six starts with Triple A Ottawa. To replace Mazone, they signed righthander Jason Anderson, of the Somerset Patriots, of the independent Atlantic League. Anderson, 27, was 5-2 with a 3.29 ERA in 60 relief appearances at Triple A Portland last year . . . Chase Utley was hit by a pitch for the 11th time, tops in the majors. *