Friday, September 14, 2012
With the Phillies winning 4-3 heading into the bottom of the 8th inning, Manuel chooses to bring in Phillippe Aumont (Bastardo, Rosenberg, and Lindblom were already used). It marked his 5th appearance in 5 days. A gun only has so many bullets before it runs out of ammunition. To the common fan, it was clear that Aumont was gassed from the get-go, and needed to be removed after the first batter he faced (shouldn't have been in the game to begin with!). However, Manuel let him in to face 4 batters, 2 of which scored, and it could have easily been worse had Kratz not gunned one down trying to steal. Then Manuel called upon Jacob Diekman. No offense to the young reliever, but he's just not any good. Manuel had Justin DeFratus and Jeremey Horst that he could have elected to use instead, but that would just have made too much sense. Diekman is a timebomb, ready to exploded at any second, allowing base runners here, there, and everywhere. In 22.2 innings, he allowed 17 runs (12 earned) and has a WHIP of 1.68, while DeFratus sports a 0.00 ERA/1.00 WHIP and Horst a 1.19 ERA/1.24 WHIP. You know who else was still available in the bullpen? The 50 Million Dollar Man (aka- Jonathan Papelbon). Why not use him for a 4 out save. Just saying...
I do not question Manuel's desire to win. I do question his "gut instincts" when it comes to bullpen management. This was a game they should have won and most likely needed to win. This was a bad loss that ruined the positive momentum the team had steamrolled into Houston with. Not to mention, they're now 4 back of the Wild Card.