Making Mariano Work
They felt pretty good about that, and they even felt good about the fact they had some success against Yankees closer Mariano Rivera in the eighth and ninth innings. They made Rivera throw 39 pitches as he allowed two hits and a walk in two innings, which meant a few hitters got pretty good looks at him.
“We felt pretty good up there,” said Jimmy Rollins, who worked a one-out walk in the eighth. “That’s always the question mark, what is he going to look like … and I think we saw some things.”
Shane Victorino followed with a single to put runners on first and second. Chase Utley grounded into an inning-ending double play, which left Charlie Manuel steamed after the game because he said replay showed Utley beat the throw. I haven’t seen the replay to know either way, but Utley also said he was told he was safe. But like Rollins, Utley thought some good could come from seeing Rivera last night.
“I think so,” he said. “We don’t really have the opportunity to face him at all because he’s in the American League. The more you face him the more comfortable you can get off him.”
Of course, not that the Phillies want a few more cracks at Rivera in late-inning comebacks.
“That’s a guy you obviously don’t want to see a whole lot,” Ryan Howard said. “You’d like to keep him in the bullpen as much as possible.”