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Saturday, June 20, 2009

Game 66: Awful. Absolutely brutal (36-30)

This whole home stand has been a wreck. Bad luck, bad playing, bad managing. Everything that could have gone wrong has.

Tonight, Ryan Howard did not get the start because he was in the hospital last night with a fever. Understandable. However, Greg Dobbs started at first while Matt Stairs started in left. This doesn't make a lot of sense. Stairs is slower than Dobbs. Their defensive positions should have been swapped. I also found it really weird that Manuel decided to start Bako tonight with one of his usuals (Howard) already out of the lineup. Bako has been a career backup with really bad numbers.

Somewhat baffling, Happ went 6 IP with 2 ER while allowing 14 runners to reach base. That's pretty lucky for him. What isn't lucky are the 2 hits Durbin allowed to start the 7th. A bloop hit over Utley's head, and a hard hit ball back up the middle that hit Durbin and bounced into no man's land. This followed a hard hit ball by Werth that bounced off of Bergesen's foot right in the direction of their SS Andino, who promptly threw out Werth.

The Phils managed to have a big inning in the 7th that started off with back-to-back doubles by Victorino and Utley. Stairs and Dobbs both single, and then Howard hit a pinch hit, 3 run HR to make the score 5-3.

Personally, I would have used Ryan Madson in the 8th inning with the heart of the Orioles lineup set to hit. Park pitched the 8th, and breezed through their hitters while looking pretty sharp. Madson blew the save in the 9th after giving up home runs to Greg Zaun and Brian Roberts. Madson featured his cutter tonight. I thought this was weird since he usually relies on his fastball and change up. I'm not saying the Phils would have won tonight had Manuel used Madson in the 8th, but that's what I would have done.

Of note: the Orioles allowed a righty to pitch to Utley in the 8th with 2 men on before bringing in lefty Mark Hendrickson to pitch to Stairs and Werth! It seemed like he was pitching around Werth to get to Dobbs, but then got him to ground out on a 3-1 pitch. Goofy.

This was a really painful game for me to watch as it probably was for you. Things need to turn around. I honestly would have rather seen the Phils go down 3-0 tonight than lose 6-5. Madson probably has lost a lot of confidence now. This was more deflating. Idk, it was just really brutal for me.

4 comments:

Henry Rowengartner said...

I don't care if it is the catcher or Madson but STOP THROWING FASTBALLS DOWN THE MIDDLE OF THE PLATE WHEN YOU ARE AHEAD IN THE COUNT.

Scott Graham said...

I agree I would like to see a changeup in the dirt. However, the pitch was meant to be outside. Low, outside corner. There is nothing wrong with those intentions. He missed. I don't blame anyone for that except bad luck. He could have missed in the same spot with a changeup.

Henry Rowengartner said...

There's something wrong with those intentions when you have fallen into a pattern of trying to sneak fastballs by batters when you are ahead in the count, regardless of location. He was clearly sitting on a fastball there, probably because he was shown videotape of the Barajas at-bat and other such at-bats over and over before this series.

Scott Graham said...

If Madson would have hit his spot, it wouldn't have mattered if Roberts was told a fastball was coming. The pitch was supposed to be low and outside. He would not have been able to do anything with a 95ish MPH fastball in that location.