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Phils Drop Pitchers’ Duel Late to Reds 4-2

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Mon, April 15, 2013 09:46 PM | Comments: 29
2013 Game Recaps

Steve Jeltz Award: The Bullpen

On a day filled with sadness for so many, baseball played on. On Jackie Robinson Day, and only a few hours after the horrifying explosions in Boston, the Phillies and Reds’ starters went toe-to-toe in a terrific pitcher’s duel. Unfortunately, the Phillies came up on the losing end of a 4-2 outing to the Reds.

THE CATCH

Above is one of the greatest catches I have ever seen. It might be one of the greatest any of us have ever seen. Keep your eyes on it. It’s just as incredible the 100th time you watch it as it is the first.

It’s Ben Revere laying out completely to rob Todd Frazier of an RBI and extra bases, turning a sure double into a double play.

It’s up there with the likes of Griffey, Mays, Edmonds, and some of the greatest plays ever made in center field.

As for the game itself….

LEE AND ARROYO IN CONTROL

- Cliff Lee was pretty excellent again tonight. He was aided by his man in center field, who also made another great catch up against the wall later on the game. Lee was fully in control through six, allowing only three hits to that point. But a Joey Votto single and Brandon Phillips double that should have been caught by Michael Young got Lee in trouble. A passed ball through the five hole of Erik Kratz allowed Votto to score and a 12 pitch walk from Jay Bruce, Lee’s first walk in eleven months, seemed to telegraph Lee’s demise. Lee would induce a double play to keep the game at 2-0.

- Not to be outdone, Bronson Arroyo pitched a heck of a game himself, going eight innings, scattering five hits, allowing 2 earned while striking out three to earn the win.

UTLEY’S CLUTCH HOMER

- Chase Utley came to the plate in the eighth for Cliff Lee and did something the other Phillies couldn’t seem to do: got good wood on the ball and drove a Bronson Arroyo fastball deep into center field for a two-run homer to tie the game 2-2.

BAD LUCK BULLPEN

- More than anything, bad luck did the Phillies in tonight. Jeremy Horst entered the bottom of the eighth with the game tied 2-2. Speedster Derrick Robinson got the worst contact I have ever seen off a batted ball and turned it into a single, forcing Horst to field the ball to his right, with no chance to get him at first. Two batters later, Zack Cozart doubled on a lightly hit ball to right that Laynce Nix narrowly missed as he overran on a sliding catch attempt. Horst’s night wrapped up with an intentional walk to Votto. Mike Adams relieved Horst and gave up a two-run single to Phillips on a letter-high fastball that was about an inch away from being in Freddy Galvis‘s glove.

The Reds took a 4-2 lead and Aroldis Chapman closed it out with a 1-2-3 ninth for his third save of the year.

Avatar of Ian Riccaboni

About Ian Riccaboni

Ian Riccaboni has written 783 articles on Phillies Nation.

Ian's athletic achievements include getting stuffed by NBA center Aaron Gray in high school and hitting .179 over four years for NYU against D-III, NAIA, JuCo, and NCBA schools. Ian hopes his athletic successes will help him achieve his dream of becoming the underground Bob Uecker.

 
 
  • Posts: 0 glutenous

    Ugh. This is another loss that just stings like a hornet.

     
  • Posts: 0 guest

    Ok. tough loss today. it seemed like a typical game where phillies find a way to tie it up only for the pen and bloop hits to sell their doom. however my rant is with our catchers. how many times are we going to watch kratz ground into a double play our leave a village in the base paths? seems every game he is a ralley killer. But now he can’t catch a ball right in front of him. if this is what we have until chooch comes back why not try tommy joesph? can’t be any worse.

     
    • Posts: 5126 Lefty

      Avatar of Lefty

      I’m going to assume that you don’t follow minor league baseball players regularly. I totally get it, you’d have to be kind of a baseball junkie like me, and not everybody is.

      So you should know,
      Tommy Joseph has been horrible behind the plate so far this season at LV, giving up 7 passed balls in 7 games, he is also not hitting much. At least for now, he is not the answer.

       
  • Posts: 0 Bart Shart

    Great catch. One of the best I have ever seen. The game….Lee deserved to win and the bullpen (Horst) stunk.

     
    • Posts: 0 A Nix Fix

      Perhaps there is benefit in Revere watching flat-footed RFer Nix lay out for routine catches

       
  • Posts: 0 Steven

    in my opinion, another game charlie got over matched and cost us the game. i know we cant run adams out every night, but if your going to have him up in 8th, u might as well put him in to start it instead of letting horst self-destruct again!

    i know alot of people have a love-fest with Charlie, but this team won despite him and with a decent manager would have won at least 1 more between ’09-’11! not sure Sandberg is answer, but its worth a try!

     
    • Posts: 0 schmenkman

      “…with a decent manager would have won at least 1 more between ’09-’11!”

      That’s a dubious claim, I think. Without specifying the specific things that a “decent manager” would have done differently, and why they would have turned out better, I am extremely doubtful.

       
      • Posts: 0 Devin

        Let me start by saying that the claim that a decent manager would have one at least one more World Series is absolutely insane. The best manager in the world can still get swept in the first round. That dramatically overstates the impact of the manager on individual games. However, Charlie has cost us quite a few games over the years. I would say that compared to the top guys Charlie is most definitely a negative overall value.

        For one thing, he refuses to use closers in non-save situations to a point where it has become a running joke among several analysts (Jonah Keri, for example). That’s not the only way that he mishandles the bullpen. He VERY rarely plays match-ups in high leverage situations, almost always choosing to trust one reliever with the entire inning rather than go to a LOOGY or ROOGY. This also has become a running joke.

        When the team acquired Hunter Pence he benched Domonic Brown. At the time, Brown was batting considerably better than Ibanez in left. Charlie prefers to play veterans in any situation, so he kept Ibanez in. Although this ended up being a good decision at the time (as I recall, Ibanez went on a TEAR after the Pence trade), it damaged Brown’s development and confidence and also hurt the defense (I don’t care how bad you think Brown is in LF, he has NEVER been as bad as Raul. There are HS outfielders who will never play in college that are defensively better than Raul was at that time).

        The Jimmy Rollins Leadoff Experience is finally over, but it should have ended 2 years ago. Honestly, Jimmy probably NEVER should have been leading off while sharing the field with Victorino, Pierre, or Revere.

        Lately it’s also worth mentioning that a smart manager would probably bench Howard more often against left-handed pitching. And even a competent manager would move him out of the 4-hole against lefties. Your clean-up hitter should not nearly be a guaranteed out every time he sees the opposing starter. Mayberry, Jimmy, and Chooch would all be options to take the 4, with Howard bumping down to 5 in those games. Chase would also be an option because his splits are much less dramatic.

        He generally handles the offense well, although there is a VERY strong argument to be made that Chase should have been a 2-hole hitter for most or all of his career. That’s not a major concern, a lot of managers would bat Chase 3rd because baseball as a sport hasn’t caught on to lining up batting orders properly. Also, his teams have always drawn walks poorly. The swing first mentality most likely starts with him.

        How much does all this add up to? Who knows? How many games have been tied in the 9th and never made it to 10 because our best reliever (Paps, Lidge, Madson, whichever it was at the time) stayed on the bench when there were men in scoring position? How many hits have guys like Valdes, Horst, Schwimer, Qualls, Romero (post 08), and the rest given up because they were expected to get outs against opposite handed hitters?

        I like Charlie. He helped do something incredible for this team and this city. But much like Andy Reid (or Norv Turner) in football, Charlie is the guy that the other teams crack jokes about. He’s extremely old-fashioned, and there has never been room for old-fashioned in sports.

         
      • Posts: 0 schmenkman

        @Devin, mostly agree, just a few comments:
        - bullpen management: agree Manuel’s not great, I just don’t know that a majority of managers would do significantly better
        - leadoff: Victorino was no better then Rollins, and Pierre was coming off back to back .657 OPS seasons, barely made the team, and wasn’t expected to play very much
        - walks: since Manuel arrived, the Phillies have walked more than any team in the NL, and swung first less (by a good margin) than any team in the NL.

         
      • Posts: 0 Ken Bland

        In reply to Devin,

        You raise some discussable points, but I’ll offer a general view, and a specific one regarding this bit about using a closer in various spots.

        Not that any manager is perfect, and being in a public position, it’s fair to discuss their decisions. But what I find irritating at times is how quick people are to criticize. Sometimes, people would do well to respect time in the game, and closeness to the situation and closeness to the situation, and have a little more respect tha taking a position like they know better than someone directly involved.

        To the point about the closer being used in critical situations, that’s great in theory. And sometimes, it seems inarguably the thing to do. I vaguely recall a game a couple years ago when the Phils played at St. Louis, and in a tie on the road, Charlie still didn’t pitch Madson in the 10th, opting for someone like Baez and in essence threw the game away. As it’s been sometime, I forget the exactness of the situation, but as I recall being ultra pissed, I looked at the game in real time and concluded this was a time where you definitely use the closer where you might not if that’s not your style.

        But for the most part, using a closer in critical game points doesn’t jive perfectly with reality.
        Personally, I choose to think it’s not quite that simple just for the fact that it’s NOT a common practice. And the reasons I think that might be the case include this isn’t the old days where your pen guys were typically lesser pitchers, and earned either small or less monies depending on what historic time frame at which you’re looking. All arms are expensive now, including the 400K guys, let alone the Adams and Papelbon types. A game can change in a heartbeat, and you can’t risk 2-3 warmups a game potentially without compromising the health of an arm. Plus, it’s not fable that habit probably enhances preparation.

        Charlie’s done an overall good job here, helped by the bottom line results, and should be remembered positively when his tenure is finished. Many crticisms, as I opined at the outset are indeed discussable. But included in that lot of moves and decisions, I’ll continue to respect that he’s more experienced, and closer to the situation than me, and frequently give him some slack.

        Enjoyed the well thought out message, and your one yesterday on the RISP. Enjoy the day.

         
  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    A total of 8 runs in the last 4 games.
    But on the positive, I am really impressed with Revere’s defense.

     
  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    Revere’s catch is glorious and possibly the best play of the season so far.

    Utz was clutch as hell.

    Lee was very solid again.

    But Kratz is killing us, now defensively. Today’s game made me miss Chooch tremendously.

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew From Waldorf

    Was lee mad at Kratz for the passed ball or the umpire?

    You arent supposed to come unglued like that.

    But I am sure it is frustrating for him to have this lack of offense.

     
  • Posts: 87 Johanna

    Avatar of Johanna

    Does anybody else feel that the Rollins, Utley Howard, Young combo was getting hot during the Mets series and then when we went to Florida, Charlie messed up that chemistry by consecutively giving Rollins, Young and then last night Utley the day off? I know these guys need a day off here and there, but do they really need it this early in the season?

     
    • Posts: 5126 Lefty

      Avatar of Lefty

      I don’t feel that way, Johanna. I think these older guys need the breaks, and I’m glad Charlie is giving to them. Before the season he said Galvis might get 250 AB’s, I guess this is what he was talking about.

       
  • Posts: 0 Chris

    I’m sure Lee is frustrated. This has been going on for him for 2 years. Lannan also has 2 good starts with nothing to show for it. Kratz stinks…period. He has killed so many rally’s I can’t even count that high. He can’t block pitches or catch the ball either. My frustration with him has been building for days and days. We’ve been saying this for years, but the offense is maddeningly inconsistent. Even when they bring in new hitters, they catch the same disease. The bullpen is still lousy in the 6th and 7th innings. Not to mention a gimpy cleanup hitter who can’t hit home runs anymore. This looks like an average team at best. Too many issues.

     
  • Posts: 5126 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    I really think very highly of Cliff Lee, he’s a great pitcher and I’m glad he’s a Phillie. But he has got to keep his composure in situations like that. There are always going to be times in a game when you can’t control everything that happens.

    If Ben Revere had not made those two catches earlier in the game, Lee would not have had anything to be frustrated about later. That awful throw he made to second was all on him, no one to blame. He’s got to keep his composure pure and simple IMO.

     
    • Posts: 0 George

      Sometimes I think composure gets confused with just being tired after throwing six innings. When you’re no longer at your peak, mistakes are made.

      But what do I know?

      Baseball analysis is one thing; psychoanalysis requires a degree and a license. I’m trying to stick to the former.

       
      • Posts: 5126 Lefty

        Avatar of Lefty

        You don’t need a degree to express an opinion on a sports comment page, George. :-)

        Do you think any of the present MLB managers have these degrees? But they do have to manage 25 personalities on a baseball team everyday.

        I managed people in businesses, and coached baseball for many many years. Believe me there is much more to coaching than just teaching fundamentals, and putting together lineups. You have to get to know your guys, and get into their heads a little to understand how to extract the best performance possible.

        Could Lee have been tiring at that point? Of course. But I can think of 25 million reasons why a tired athlete should be fit enough to turn and throw a baseball accurately to a second baseman from that position.

        Again, back to my original statement, I’m very fond of Cliff Lee and am glad that he is a Phillie. He is a truly great pitcher. I’ll stick to my opinion that his frustration may have cost him last night.

         
  • Posts: 2981 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Ehhh…whatever… The Phillies lost a baseball game on a day when a whole lot of people either lost their lives or a limb or two. A bunch of innocent people’s live were severely altered. Yeah, people die horrific deaths every single day, but once again a city and the nation has been attacked. It’s not 9-11 but it smells so much like it. So I’m really not gonna put a whole lot of worry into whether Charlie didn’t manage the game well enough or if Cliff Lee lost his composure or if Kratz sucked behind the plate. It’s just not that important.

    Seeing that Revere catch again did put a smile on my face though…

     
    • Posts: 2069 Brooks

      Avatar of Brooks

      Well put Chuck – lives were altered becuase of what happened – in the big scheme, we are so lucky to only have a worry like a loss of a game.

       
    • Posts: 0 Dave

      Good point Chuck. Having lost my father, nephew and brother-in-law in the past 10 months makes baseball seem very unimportant…and it is.

       
  • Posts: 2069 Brooks

    Avatar of Brooks

    I was unable to watch the entire game last night and missed the event you are referring to but, having had the priveledge of watching Cliff Lee pitch for us I have to say that he definitely gets a pass. Normally very level headed, an excellent athelete and seemingly great competitor without a big ego.
    If this were a trend then perhaps its worth talking about. We have not been watching a younger Cole Hamels here nor Brett Myers. But a slip up? A tell tale sign of his humanity?
    We all have a tendency to blow some steam once in a while.

     
    • Posts: 5126 Lefty

      Avatar of Lefty

      Of course he should get a pass. No doubt about it, we are talking about one of the best pitchers in the game today.

      I’m just noting what I believe I saw last night, Brooks. He lost his composure for an inning. I lose mine all the time, I know he’s human.

       
  • Posts: 0 Whatever

    Whatever!

     
  • Posts: 0 Betasigmadeltashag

    The one problem I have is Charlie inability to use a pitcher for one batter. He has three lefties in his bull pen, use them when a left handed hitter comes up it drives me crazy that he feels that all his pitchers need to pitch whole innings

     
  • Posts: 0 Hot Dog

    If Charlie wanted a lefty he should have used Bastardo. If he was going to pitch Adams he should have been brought in from the start. I realize he wants to get Horst and Durbin going. But a tie game in the eighth is not the time. In Miami in game two in the ninth the fielders should have been at double play depth.

     
  • Posts: 0 Jeff

    I was at the game in Cincy last night… “An inch away from Freddie’s glove” seemed to be the theme of the night. It was quite apparent that either he was positioned incorrectly a number of times, or the Reds got super-lucky with all of those seeing eye hits to that side. I have a feeling we missed Chase more than we realize last night.

     
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