For seven teams, it's almost gut-check time

There are still a handful of teams whose status remains uncertain with two weeks to go before the nonwaiver trade deadline. Not close enough to the top to clearly be contenders, but not far enough out to raise the white flag without hesitation, they have to decide on a direction that not only affects the rest of the 2007 season but could have an impact on the next three to five years of the franchise. In that spirit, here's a look at seven teams on the playoff bubble.

(Clubs with better records than the clubs listed below are clear buyers. Those with worse records -- a group that includes the past two World Series winners -- are clear sellers. All games behind figures represent the number of games behind that team is in the loss column.)

Philadelphia Phillies (46-45): Buyers

Philadelphia Phillies Even though the Phillies have been hit hard by injuries to their pitching staff this season, their only option is to push for a playoff spot with what they have. For one thing, they're only five games back in both the NL East and wild-card races. But more importantly, their entire team is built around contention now: