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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Friday, May 21, 2010

Game 41: Hamels beats Boston (26-15)

Cole Hamels allowed only a first inning solo home run, going 7 innings in the Phils' 5-1 victory over the Red Sox. Jimmy Rollins was back in the leadoff spot but left the game early due to injury. Charlie Manuel, aside from putting Rollins back into the top half of the order, made only one glaring mistake.

When the score was 5-1, Manuel used David Herndon, the Phils' worst reliever this year (by far) to pitch the top of the 8th inning even though righties Chad Durbin and Danys Baez were available. Herndon actually did a nice job and ran into no trouble, but it was a curious decision to say the least given that Durbin did not pitch at all yesterday.

Baez started the ninth inning and allowed two baserunners to reach with only one out. LHB J.D. Drew was the next batter, so Manuel correctly used J.C. Romero, who retired Drew. The next batter was righty Adrian Beltre. Although The Manuel is strongly opposed to Romero's facing RHBs, he was not the tying run, and David Ortiz was in the on-deck circle. I'd rather have Romero face a lefty as the tying run than a righty facing Ortiz as the tying run. Of course, Romero promptly hit Beltre with a pitch. Ortiz then came to the plate, and, after a decent at-bat, Romero coaxed a 398-foot fly ball to centerfield to end the game. Just as they drew it up.

Hopefully Rollins is okay, and hopefully he hits seventh when he returns.

Tomorrow the Phils try to win their first ever home series against Boston when RHP Kyle Kendrick faces RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka.

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