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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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Game 119: Hamels' early struggles and poor strategy leads to Phils loss (69-50)

The Phils lost the series opener to the Mets tonight against a pitcher they should have beaten. Mike Pelfrey has pretty poor stats against LHBs and Charlie Manuel rightly started Greg Dobbs at third rather than Pedro Feliz. Pelfrey's career stats vs. LHBs are .377/.434, and against RHBs .331/.363. Clearly the LHBs reach base more frequently and have a lot more success against the sinkerball righty.

Hamels got hit early due to some poorly placed pitches. The Phils had a very good chance to score runs in the sixth inning. The Phillies seemed to be getting to Pelfrey and had already scored one run when Ruiz was safe on a mental error by Luis Castillo that loaded the bases. Manuel correctly pinch hit for Hamels because there was one out, and it was an optimal time to cash in on the chance. However, Manuel chose Ben Francisco as the pinch hitter which is an awful decision. We already know Pelfrey's splits, and Matt Stairs most likely should have been used. Manuel's thought process was that he was probably saving Stairs for later in the game. Terrible. Francisco and Rollins both popped out, and the runners were stranded.

The umpires blew a few calls tonight. The first helped the Phillies out. Jeff Francoeur was called out at second when Rollins clearly never came close to tagging him. The Mets' manager Manuel correctly got tossed arguing the call. Also, in the 8th as the Phillies were trying to make a comeback, Ruiz was called out at first as the back end of the double play that ended the inning. He was safe. It was close, but not close enough to get it wrong.

Today J.A. Happ takes on another pitcher the Phillies should beat in Tim Redding

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