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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Monday, July 19, 2010

Game 91: Halladay beaten (48-43)

Thanks to some poor umpiring which led to a 4-run Cubs second inning and a poor plate approach from the Phils' entire lineup (see below), the Phils lost last night by a score of 11-6. The Phils' post-All Star start consists of Chicago, St. Louis (starting tonight), and Colorado. Chicago is by far the worst team of those three, and the Phils decided to drop three of four against them. It's very possible the Phillies could be trailing the wild card by 6+ games in one week's time. They now trail the Rockies by 2 games.

Moreover, Roy Halladay will only pitch once over the next two series, because the Phillies management decided it was a good idea to give the oldest pitcher on the staff the fewest days off (Moyer was rocked Thursday) and the best pitcher on the staff the most. Perhaps if the Phils were leading the division by 5+ games, such a strategy would be reasonable in order to maximize Halladay's efficiency in the playoffs. Now, Halladay misses the entire St. Louis series. Awful.

As for last night's game, why is Roy Halladay swinging at the first TWO pitches of an at-bat after he walked his previous time to the plate? Why is Shane Victorino swinging at a 2-0 pitch in the first inning against a guy with an absurd walk-innings ratio? Jimmy Rollins, of course, wasn't any better. The plate approach last night was a joke.

Also, when the score was only 6-3, Manuel brought in JC Romero to face righty Jeff Baker to start the seventh inning. AWFUL. He can't pitch to righties, and it's been proven over and over the last three years. What happened? Leadoff single. Romero was correctly allowed to pitch to the lefty on deck, but he couldn't even get him out. Then Manuel removes him from the game. Use one of the useless righties in the bullpen to pitch to one batter, use Romero to pitch to the lefty, then bring in another righty. It's only one extra pitcher, and in a pennant race, you have to maximize your bullpen. If not, the chances of the other team scoring 5 runs in an inning increase. Bad job by Manuel last night.

Roy Halladay's first runs came off a Geovany Soto 2-run homer. Halladay threw an 0-1 pitch right at the knees for a strike, but the ump missed it and called it a ball. Two pitches later it's 2-0 Cubs. Halladay was seen yelling from the dugout at the ump later in the game. Yes, the Phils probably wouldn't have won the game anyway, but if that pitch is called correctly, the 4 runs easily could have been zero.

The Phils look to recover tonight in St. Louis when Kyle Kendrick faces RHP Blake Hawksworth.

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