From The Rundown



EASTERN FRONT
(Not to be confused with the Great Patriotic War.)
(Or the French invasion of Russia during the Napoleonic Wars.)

The combination of a Phillies win (thank you very much, Mr. Placido Polanco) and a Braves loss (thank you very much, Mr. James McDonald) means you wake up to a new team atop the NL East for the first time since May 30th. Or, if you prefer, for the first time in 105 days. Or, if you prefer, for the first time in 89 games. But there's still nearly a month to go in the regular season. And the Braves and Phillies still have to play each other six more times - including a three-game set in Atlanta the first weekend in October to finish the year.
Marlins-Phillies | Braves-Pirates | Standings

More from The Rundown, including some Swiss cheese and an Onion, after the jump.

SWISS CHEESE
The last US man standing at the US Open didn't go down without a 4-hour-and-28-minute fight. But Sam Querrey of Las Vegas did go down to Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland in five sets. And so there will be no American man in the quarterfinals for the just the second year ever in the Open era. (And the first year ever was last year.) But there will be two Swiss men. The other one is Roger Federer, who gets Robin Soderling in the quarterfinals tonight. Soderling beat Federer in the quarterfinals at the French Open in June. That ended a record streak of 23 straight Grand Slam semifinals for the Federer Express, who has reached the US Open final every year since 2004.
Querrey-Wawrinka Review | Federer-Soderling Preview | Bad News Hits Home

PEELING BACK THE LAYERS
The NFL season kicks off tomorrow night in the Big Easy. Vikings at Saints. We haven't seen a game like that since two games ago (see: 2009 NFC Championship). Purists will prepare mentally with a deep study of our 2010 NFL Power Rankings, which offers up:
Vikings, Biggest Question - Brett Favre returns at quarterback. But will the offense be the same without WR Sidney Rice? (Walker)
Impurists will kick back with a copy of The Onion, which offers up:
Vikings, Biggest Question - The Vikings still have many unanswered questions in the secondary, such as "What's a cornerback?" and "Who was supposed to cover that guy?"
To each his own.
ESPN 2010 NFL Power Rankings: Week 1 | OSN 2010 NFL Preview