Charlie Manuel frequently makes poor strategic decisions. The 11-million dollar scoreboard in left field would probably do a similar job. We guarantee a post analyzing Manuel's decisions for every Phillies game. Please click on our aliases below to email us.

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

Game 114: Phils misuse Lidge, shut out (62-52)

In the top of the 7th, the bases became loaded with only one out after Ryan Howard shockingly made an errant throw to Jimmy Rollins who shockingly tried to tag the far, moving runner instead of the close, stationary base. So instead of an inning-ending double play, the Phils faced a high-leverage situation down 2-0 with Hanley Ramirez coming to the plate. Charlie Manuel decided to remove Hamels from the game in favor of Ryan Madson. I agree with the removal of Hamels. I do not agree with the choice of Madson. In a bases loaded, one out situation, the offense is expected to score 1.65 runs in that particular inning.

Fast-forward to the 9th inning. Down 3-0, Manuel brought in Brad Lidge to start the inning. It's certainly safe to assume that Lidge would have been brought into the game had the score still been 2-0.

Back to the 7th. Manuel's plan when he removed Hamels must have been this: I'll use Madson with one out and the bases loaded with the Marlins' best hitter at the plate. Then, if the game is still close, I'll use Condrey in the 8th and Lidge in the 9th.

To summarize all this: Manuel feels it's better to use Ryan Madson when the run expectancy is 1.65/inning (bases loaded, one out) and use Lidge when the run expectancy is 0.555/inning (nobody out, nobody on). I'm sure I don't need to use numbers or stats to prove that Lidge is the better pitcher than Madson. Madson did get out of the jam with only one inherited runner scoring, but Lidge, being the better pitcher and the owner of a higher K/IP ratio, certainly had a better chance to keep that inning scoreless.

In what other line of work would such inefficiency be tolerated? Let's say you manage a used car dealership. Assume you have two car salesman, Biff Finkleman and Dutch O'Flanagan. Biff is a solid salesman who shows up to work on time, never complains, and sells an average number of cars. Dutch is the best salesman in the history of Kulp and Furman Automobiles; he sells the most cars per day. Two clients walk in the door. Client A is looking to buy a $3000 car, and Client 2 is looking to buy a $9000 car. If you're the manager, who do you assign to Client 2? If your answer isn't Dutch, you're either lying to yourself, or your name is Charlie Manuel.

The only reason why Manuel chose to use Lidge in a situation three times less important than the alternative, is because it wasn't the 9th inning. Ridiculous.

1 comment:

Scott Graham said...

So you're saying you would use your better salesman in the more crucial deal? I don't get it.