Lee and Lidge Struggling


lee 0925.jpgThe rolls of plastic over the lockers inside the visitor’s clubhouse at Miller Park might remain rolled up this weekend.

The Brewers beat the Phillies last night, 8-4.

A couple things about the loss:

- Cliff Lee allowed nine hits and seven runs in six innings. Lee went 5-0 with a 0.68 ERA in his first five starts with the Phillies. He is 2-3 with a 6.35 ERA in his last six, which includes a shutout Sept. 15 against Washington. Lee has allowed 49 hits, 24 earned runs and three walks and struck out 29 in his last 34 innings. Opponents have hit .336 against him.

“His first (few) games here were really, really good,” Charlie Manuel said. “That was because he had command to both sides of the plate. He’s had some trouble doing that. Anytime somebody (struggles) it’s a concern. If you have a not-so-good outing or whatever, that doesn’t concern me. If you go three or four, yeah, I’d like to see him pitch like he did the first three or four times. But unfortunately that doesn’t happen.”

Reason to be concerned? Sure. Alarmed? No, I’m not alarmed. But you certainly don’t want one of your top starting pitchers — arguably the biggest acquisition at the trade deadline — struggling with just one more start before the postseason. The hope for the Phillies is that this is just a rough patch at a bad time and he will right the ship in time.

- Brad Lidge pitched the seventh inning in mop up duty, but he pitched with a purpose: throw fastballs. He threw 16 pitches, 12 of which were fastballs. On Wednesday in Florida, where Lidge blew his Major League-leading 11th save, Lidge threw 22 pitches. Just four were fastballs.

“When you start falling into very obvious patterns the hitters start getting more confidence because they know what’s going to come,” Lidge said. “Today was a big day for me to go out and throw a lot of fastballs and that’s what I did.”

Lidge allowed a leadoff single to Corey Hart, who stole second. He scored on a two-out single from Casey McGehee.

“I made a mistake on a 1-2 pitch to McGehee,” Lidge said. “Aside from that it actually felt really good. For me it was a much more important outing than if I go out there and, yeah, nobody scores, but I threw a ton of sliders and didn’t really accomplish a whole lot. An outing like that I need as much as anything right now. What I need to establish right now is a fastball. Charlie said, ‘I thought you got some good work.’ I said, ‘Keep giving me the ball. It doesn’t matter the situation. I need to get myself ready to pitch this postseason.’ It doesn’t matter to me if it’s a one-run game or we’re down by seven or whatever. Work like that is very productive for me.”

If I had to guess, I’d expect Lidge to pitch in more of these situations this weekend and next week before the postseason.

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14 Comments

Not a good feeling heading to the postseason – so many questions and such inconsistency. Last year’s WS and 3 straight division championships will have to be enough.

Well, as long as Brad “feels good” that’s the main thing. By my unofficial count, that’s the 135th time he’s said that this season.

Meanwhile, Utley is hitting .222 in September after a .307 July and a .301 August. Is he nursing another injury like last season?

I’ve said it before and nothing has disabused me of the notion, Utley takes too many pitches. And it appears Werth is in the same boat.

Where’s Roy Halladay when you need him?

Roy Halladay? Need him? You mean the guy who is 4-5 in his last starts? You mean the guy the Phillies would have had to give up JA Happ to obtain? Gosh, I don’t know. Where is Roy Halladay? Probably adjusting his magic shorts.

Cliff Lee is not Roy Halladay. Never was, never will be.

I guess when he was 5-0 he was the 2nd coming of CC Sabathia. But now not so much. He’s certainly been one extreme or the other.

Our Fightin’s are making me nervous. They played sloppy baseball tonight and not with much urgency. Kendrick pitched like Kendrick of old. Moyer wasn’t too shabby in relief (that goofy play in RF didn’t help). I really thought our magic # would be a lot lower at this point. Hope we can split the series.

karen: This team seems to be psychologically incapable of locking things up too early. Witness Jimmy’s “we only have to win by one” comment and the way Cole talks about not needing to get into a groove until late September.
As Yogi said, half of the game is 90% mental.

Yeah, yeah! We have been listening to it for an eternity. Cliff Lee is not Roy Halladay. But, you know what? Roy Halladay is not a Cliff Lee and a JA Happ either. We really ought to give this Roy Halladay meme a rest.

Roy who? TO be honest, I thinkg Lee is a better pitcher. He did his pitching for CLeveland , not exactly a team anywhere near as good as Toronto. He’s having a case of nerves leading up to teh post season. Better now then in the actual playoffs (if we manage to clinch the damn division and get there)

f-i-f, sometimes you say things that are completely insane. Yeah, Cliff pitched in Cleveland. In the AL Central against far weaker competition every single year. Halladay has been pitching against the likes of the Yankees and Red Sox every year. Look up the number f games teams play in division compared to outside of the division. The AL East has easily been the best division in MLB for years.
I’m not complaining about having Cliff Lee. I am simply pointing out the FACT that Halladay is a better pitcher. Look up the numbers and try to argue otherwise, instead of pointing out arguments that help make my case.
Cliff Lee is a very good pitcher a lot of the time. Roy Halladay is probably headed to the HOF.

If Halladay was a better choice , how come Lee is the reigning AL CY Young award winner? Lee is a better choice going FORWARD and he appears to be a better athlete. It was all over espn that Halliday did not like to bat or run the bases so he was leary of playing in the NL. Reuben knew that. Enough of the second guessing. That’s revisionist history, anyway. The problem is the relief pitching and NOT the starters anyway.

If Cliff Lee continues to pitch the way he has for the last 5-6 starts then, yes, starting pitching is a problem since he will be at or near the top of the rotation. As I said, I have no problem with Cliff Lee, with the caveat that we didn’t give up much for him. But please. Look at the numbers. It’s not close. The Phillies should have given up a couple of their prized prospects to get Halladay, because the word ‘prospect’ is descriptive of what they are.
And pherris, I am not talking about Happ. They should have been able to get him for Drabek and Taylor or Brown, if JP Ricciardi wasn’t so foolish. He’ll get nothing close to that for him going forward, so he better hope that the Jays contend next year.

phan52………….We will never know how foolish JP Riccardi was. All I know is that the name JA Happ arose constantly when the Phillies were attempting to get Halladay. The Phillies got Lee and kept Happ. It is pure conjecture at this point as to what might have been.

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