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.
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Manuel decided to use Bastardo in the top of the 9th inning. This was fine as Bastardo is one of the Phillies best options, and Papelbon threw 36 pitches on Saturday.
I was even be okay with using Horst to start the 10th inning against the bottom of the Giants lineup given Papelbon's use on Saturday. However, if he were to get into any serious trouble, Papelbon would need to be ready to come in. Yes, he threw 36 pitches on Saturday, but the last time he pitched was Wednesday of last week. He should have been able to go on Sunday.
However, once Kyle Kendrick came in to pitch to Theriot, nothing good could be expected. There was only a runner on first with two outs, and Ryan Theriot stinks, so this wasn't the problem. The problem was that once Kendrick comes into the game in the form of a double switch, you know that if he's successful in getting Theriot out, he's staying in to pitch to Cabrera, Posey, and Sandoval in the next inning. Cabrera and Sandoval are switch hitters meaning they'd be batting left-handed (not good for KK), and Posey is Posey. Papelbon needs to pitch to these hitters in a tie game in extra innings.
Luckily, Kendrick was able to hang in there long enough to give the Phillies a chance to win, which they did. It clearly must be the reason since no chance of a save existed at home in extra innings, but I hope a 36 pitch performance following 2 full days off isn't the reason Papelbon didn't pitch on Sunday.