Thursday, June 29, 2006
By Steven Lienert
While sitting through four different construction zones that added an extra hour and 20 minutes to my ride home from Baltimore on Wednesday, I had ample time to stew about what I just witnessed.
Somebody in the Phillies organization owes me for gas and tolls.
The Phillies have quit. They have quit on their manager, their fans, their front office, their owners and, worst of all, on each other.
What a bad joke this season has become.
How much longer are we going to be subjected to this without any sort of change whatsoever?
If Pat Gillick saw the lineup for Game 2 and thought it was acceptable, perhaps both he and Charlie Manuel should be shown the door. Jimmy Rollins led off, followed by, drumroll please, Dave Dellucci? Chase Utley as the designated hitter? Bobby Abreu batting cleanup?
Ryan Howard, the Phillies' best player, followed Abreu. And what protection did Uncle Charlie offer Howard? How about Shane Victorino. The rest of the lineup was filled out with the regular schlubs-de-jour: David Bell, Abraham Nunez and Chris Coste.
What? Was Pat Burrell too tired from hitting his meaningless homer in Game 1? I mean, designated hitting can take a lot out of a 29-year old.
And what happenned to Aaron Rowand? He needed the night off? He's 28! I think he can play back-to-back games of a doubleheader. It's not like he's a catcher.
The Phillies practically conceded Game 2 before it even started.
Victorino should bat lead off whenever he's in the lineup, especially during interleague play. Keep Utley batting second, followed by Abreu, Burrell, Howard, Rowand, Rollins, Bell and whomever's catching.
The team has lost 13 of 15 and 15 of 18, yet Manuel trots out this lineup like the squad has won 10 straight. But doesn't everybody want to play when a team is winning? Sure, just like nobody wants to play when a team is losing.
And nobody on that team is playing right now. Even Howard.
If Gillick is allowing the Brett Myers situation to affect his decisions regarding Manuel, that might be even more egregious than how the team is handling Myers.
On a side note: The Myers situation is bad. The team needs to hold a press conference saying that they have taken measures to help Myers, like enroll him in anger management classes or have him take a spousal abuse awareness course. It would go a long way in helping the franchise regain its abandoned fan base.
Are we to be subjected to this same old malarky for the rest of the season?
Say it ain't so, Pat. Say it ain't so.
Steve Lienert can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at email@example.com
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Copyright 2006 The Phanatic