Monday, April 13, 2009

Why Are We Carrying Three LOOGYs if We Use Saul Rivera in this Situation?

Tie game, top of the seventh, Ryan Howard at the plate, and Rivera just got done hitting two consecutive batters. Manny? Are you there? No, you use your LOOGYs in the sixth and eighth, strategically avoiding the back-to-back lefties in the heart of the Phillies' order. Who could have guessed that this would happen?

Three words: In. Ex. Cusable.


Will said...

That ends up losing the game for us. A real boneheaded decision on Manny's part. Then to not yank him after the Howard HR, only to dish up another to Ibanez.

With this pitching staff, I can foresee a lot more 8-9 games. Ledezma's in over his head, he's given up at least one run in each of the 4 games he's pitched. Time to cut the cord.

JZimm can't get here soon enough.

Elan said...

I thought the same thing. Hinkley was pitching quite well - was it really worth it to have Willinghamn (.000) hit in his place? If Manny wanted someone else to hit in that place he should have double switched out Flores in the previous inning when he brought in Tavarez. In general, a mistake on Manny's part.

Steve Shoup said...

Why put Hickley there to begin with, let Tavarez finish off the inning, and let Hickley (or really it should have been Beimel) handle Victorino, Utley, Howard

Jon said...

I was at the game and could not believe what was going on. I got home and ran to this site to see if Rivera has some great success against LH'ers that I don't know about. Nope. Manny dropped the ball there... and its not often a manager actually impacts a game.

CoverageisLacking said...

Right on, Steven. Good to see you start commenting on some of the in-game decisions and strategy. Manny really blew this one. He likes to manage his bullpen on auto-pilot, which is indefensible--though it does make it easy for him, as he actually doesn't need to make many decisions. It also gives him a crutch to try to deflect criticism, as he did with his post-game comments today. He can just blithely say "Saul is my 7th inning guy." Please.

Manny's tactical skills are certainly not his strong suit. (Though at this point, I'm not sure if he has a strong suit to begin with.)

Anonymous said...

Just some numbers for you

Here is the top of the Phillies line-up

-Switch hitting Rollins (Career .764 OPS batting from the left side/.791 OPS from the right)
-Switch hitting Victorino (.749 OPS/.831 OPS)
-Lefty Utley (Career .866 OPS v. LHP/.920 OPS v. RHP)
-Lefty Howard (.787 OPS/1.062 OPS)
-Righty Werth (.921 OPS/.761 OPS)

They bring in lefty Mike Hinckley to face Rollins. I don't exactly understand the move, but what the hell.

So into the 7th we go and we need a new arm. Here's who's available:

LHP Beimel
LHP Ledezma
RHP Saul Rivera
RHP Steven Shell

The Phillies have Victorino/Utley/Howard coming up.

Just from a match-up stand point it makes sense to bring in a LHP here to reduce the effectiveness of the two biggest bats in the line-up. But they don't. They go with Rivera. He plunks the first two hitters. They leave him in. He gives up a bomb to Howard. They leave him in. He strikes out Jayson Werth. He gives up a bomb to left-handed hitting Raul Ibanez (.731/.850 OPS).

So why bring in Rivera there to face S/L/L/R/L when you have two other lefties sitting in the pen?

I'm going to look at the match-ups:


Victorino 5 PA (.400/.400/.600)
Utley - 8 PA (.286/.375/.429)
Howard - 6 PA (.000/.500/.000)
Werth - 1 PA (.000/.000/.000)


Victorino - 1 PA (.000/.000/.000)
Utley - 3 PA (.000/.667/.000)
Howard - 4 PA (.500/.500/.750)
Werth - 1 PA (1.000/1.000)


Victorino - 13 PA (.250/.308/.250)
Utley - 12 PA (.182/.250/.182)
Howard - 12 PA (.361/.500/.455)
Werth - 4 PA (.667/.750/1.000)


Victorino - 1 PA (1.000/4.000)
Utley - 1 PA (.000/.000/.000)
Howard - 2 PA (.000/.000/.000)
Werth - 3 PA (.333/.333/.333)

Rivera has had relative success against Victorino and Utley, but a poor track record against Howard with a fairly small sample size.

So as this happens I'm wondering why they go with the righty Rivera, but in general I have some faith in him. Then he hits two batters. I'm thinking they got to bring in Beimel to face Howard. They don't. He jacks. Beimel does come into to face Howard in the 9th though. And strikes him out without any kind of trouble.

Oh well.

Steven said...

They HAD to bring in Beimel to face Howard there. Game's on the line. You HAVE to go to your best LHP in that situation. Rivera v. Victorino and Utley, ok. Once he plunks them both and it's 2 on, no one out, and Howard at the plate, you must must must go to the LHP. Seriously, I'm not saying Manny should be fired for this, but if he was, I wouldn't necessarily object. Just terrible.

Mr. Mustache said...

Double switch for Hinckley was the smart move. Don't use more bullpen guys than you have to. Why carry 3 catchers if you don't do double switches when you are almost required to?

Hendo said...

How is Hinckley a LOOGY? What he is, is your classic superannuated starter prospect who could end up making a good two-inning anchor to the back of the bullpen.

This business of stereotyping durable left-handed relievers in the specialist role and decodable fastball pitchers in the closer role is costing too many teams, not just the Nats, money and wins.

JayB said...


You seem to have finally removed your blinders and are seeing now some of the many faults of Manny Acta as a manager. Yes the talent sucks, but that is no reason to keep a poor manager.

Chris Needham said...
This comment has been removed by the author.