Monday, June 12, 2006

There Are Limits

Yes, sports fans, the Phils were due for a stinker.

Trouble is, it already happened Thursday night. The limit is one per series.

If nothing else the four games in Washington underscored the many problems this team faces beginning with the dreadful quality of the Phillies’ corner outfielders as both Pat Burrell and Bobby Abreu botched plays over the weekend that directly led to runs scored. It also highlighted the problems at catcher, where Sal Fasano started three of the four games and third string catcher Chris Coste the other. Apparently, the alleged brain trust has decided to bury Carlos Ruiz in the minors after barely giving him a chance (35 AB’s) the first time around. This sort of snap judgment is a pattern with the Phillies.

Cole Hamels took yesterday’s loss, the first of his big league career. I wasn’t impressed with his pitch selection at times, especially with men on base, though it is impossible for me to know who was calling them. However, comments by Charlie Manuel following the game suggest either Hamels or Fasano were in charge of that department.


nat said...

I was at the game in DC on Sunday and from where I was sitting -- and I had pretty good seats -- it sure looked like Fasano spent a lot of time peering into the Phillies' dugout between pitches. I assumed he was getting marching orders.

I don't know what comments you read, but the ones I read sounded as if Manuel was saying that Hamels threw a change-up when the boss wanted a fastball. The gist of it seemed to be "If only the kid had done what I asked..."

Frankly, it sounded like a bit of CYA on the manager's part, which is not something we usually hear from Charlie, and makes me wonder if he's reading some handwriting on the wall now with the Phillies on the verge of falling out of the race.

Anyway, it wouldn't have mattered who was pitching or calling pitches or what was thrown, the Phils weren't going to win that game what with lifelessly forfeiting every turn at bat. And then there was that Pat Burrell web gem...

My brother, who lives in an American League town and rarely sees the Phillies, was at the game with me and when that ball whistled past Burrell's ear, nearly taking his cap off while he did that funny little dance, turned to me and asked, "Does that happen often?"

Sadly I had to admit that our corner outfielders are a bit lacking and that Aaron Rowand, good as he is, can't make up for it.

Tom Goodman said...

"The gist of it seemed to be 'If only the kid had done what I asked..."

Yikes, if the kid was shaking off both Manuel and Fasano that takes some chutzpah!!

The papers (Inquirer and DN) both were filled with stories about how run donw this team is (20 games in 20 days, long road trip, late arrival into DC, 12 inning games, etc.) and though I tend not to take too kindly to those kinds of excuses when they work 3-4 hours per day and don't even take infield practice any longer I have to say Utley looked worn down by the end of the trip. And if Chase is worn down, that is saying something.

gr said...

the last thing this team needs is charlie manuel and company calling pitches. why do we even need a catcher then? just put up a 5 ft high piece of plywood.

Nat said...

Well you know, just because they are "working" 3-4 hours a day doesn't mean they are spending all the other hours resting. Buncha young guys on the road, plenty of spending money, all needs taken care of... think they go straight back to the hotel after the game and go beddy-by?

Rev. Smokin Steve said...

I just think Hamels was due for a stinker. Now we need to see how he responds to adversity.

Tom Goodman said...

Nat: Silly me. I forgot what it was like to be a young millionaire with plenty of time on my hands. It won't happen again, that is, the forgetting, the time on my hands, and especially the money.