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Friday, August 27, 2010

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season = over

This is pretty much for the next 2 series because we are facing tough left handed batters, hope Bastardo learned from his last time out when he surrendered 4 runs in 1 inning.

I thought he had 'back spasms' near the end of July and that they'd last until the end of the year but apparently the Phillies did not agree. I wonder what convinced Baez he finally had back spasms?

The Phillies should have put him on the DL months ago with some phantom injury so he could sit for awhile and then pitch rehab during August with callup in Sept. Having Bastardo or Mathieson in the pen had to be better than Baez. Both of them have little to gain in the minors anymore and both are injury risks, so pitching them less might maximize their benefit.

As much as Baez stinks, I'm still skeptical that Bastardo, let alone Mathieson, would be any better.

This is kind of weird timing as Baez has actually pitched well in his last few outings. If you were gonna stick him on the DL with a bogus injury, when he was totally sucking would seem a better time.

Perhaps , just this once, they are telling us the truth . If they were going to make stuff up, it would make more sense farther away from Sept. call-ups.

Considering the playoff roster deadline is 5 days away, it probably made sense if Baez was feeling weird to DL him now and put Bastardo on the roster before Aug. 31. That way, in case he pitches well, he is eligible to be on the postseason roster.

I know you can play tricks with the DL in September, but if Baez had something come up, it just makes it easier to do this now.

One bum for another

Baez is only 32?? Really?

I've aged at least ten years just watching him pitch.

It's a curious move just a few days before rosters expand. I'm guessing the Phillies know Charlie's feelings about Baez &, after dropping 4 straight to the freakin' Astros, didn't want to go through an important series in San Diego w/ a de facto short bullpen.

Ruben - The whats?

Manuel - You heard me.

Ruben - I can't put that.

Manuel - It is what it is, boss.

Ruben - But I don't think they view that as a valid injury.

Manuel - No?

Ruben - No.

Manuel - Well if you can't put "The Stinks" what can we put?

Ruben - Back Spasms?

Manuel - That's what I meant then. He's got Back Spasms.

From the previous thread:

The real problem with Strasburg is his mechanics. He doesn't do everything wrong, but he does enough wrong that he landed on the DL twice in his first pro season, and possibly needs TJ surgery.

Lincecum may be injured, but if you take a close look at his mechanics, they have been pretty good in the past. Haven't watched him pitch lately, but when the Giants were in town, I heard one of their announcers say his problems started when he overhauled his mechanics. Maybe he's altering them because of pain or injury, but I don't know.

I know I will sound like a broken record, but Mike Marshall breaks down the anatomy very simply on his website. I don't agree with everything he says because he doesn't appear to take into account individual differences in anatomy that accommodate different deliveries. But the general principles of what he teaches are undeniable. And a guy like Strasburg is not nearly as bad mechanically as Prior, but he's bad enough at a high enough velocity that he's likely to be troubled repeatedly.

Take a look at his basic videos. They aren't real entertaining, but he makes a point of showing how he did everything wrong during his career, then suggests corrective steps. Drmikemarshall.com

The lineup is out, Oswalt will be starting in RF...

great stuff, Andy

Dr. Mike needs to modernize that website.

32 in Cuban years.

Beard - I don't think Dr. Mike made the big bucks during his career. And if he did, he didn't save enough money to subsidize the website.

He has a school teaching this stuff, and from what I hear, it's pretty bare bones.

Baez!!!!

Oswalt v Latos is a great pitching matchup.

I don't know if Bastardo will be any better than Baez either. He certainly hasn't been in his previous stints. But he does address 2 problem areas which we know for sure that Baez can't solve: an additional left-handed arm & someone who can pitch multiple innings in case the starter gets yanked early. So, at least conceptually, Bastardo brings more to the table than Baez.

I'm really excited to see Oswalt vs. Latos tonight. In that pitcher's park, and with our recent offensive woes, I fully expect a 1-0 win for somebody, most likely SD. Not terribly excited about the late start time.

Am I wrong to think that I saw some slight signs of Utley getting back to form in the Astros series? Semes like he hit some balls hard, and he's still walking at a great clip. Thoughts?

Chase definitely looks like he's turning a corner. Good timing and good wood on the ball.

Glad to see the USPS has now issued a Danys Baez stamp. It's worth 5.14₵.

Given that, Charlie will bench him tonight.

I read somewhere that Contreras was Baez' babysitter in Cuba.

Interesting to compare Utley's return to Howard's

Utley: .235/.366/.294 (.276/.417/.345 if remove first game back) - 6 BB, 2 XBH, 5 K
Howard: .125/.125/.125, 0 BB, 0 XBH, 12 K

Howard has had some terrible AB. Can't think of too many bad Utley AB. He's been on base 16 times in his last 36 PA, hit a hard out yesterday, and an RBI 2B. Howard's been on base 3 times in 24 PA with no walks.

I think Jack set a record today for comments on the BL splash page. Well done sir.

Reminds me of a Three Stooges routine:

Baez: I don't feel so good.
Rube: What's wrong?
Baez: I have a weak back.
Rube: How long've you had it?
Baez: About a week back.

I read somewhere that Contreras was nearly killed by a Gatling Gun in the raid of Kettle Hill by Theodore Roosevelt and his Rough Riders.

Classic bit, Ozark. Heard over the clubhouse intercom: Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard.....

Well, BL luminaries such as Clout, bap, and Sophist probably have me beat, but I'm just honored really to be mentioned in their presence. The first time you get featured, it's a thrill, and as much as you might think it does, the thrill never goes away. I just hope to continue doing this for a long time, and whatever recognition I receive is secondary to the quality of the work. That's what I'm in it for.

I can't see! I can't see!
What's the matter?
I have my eyes closed!
(boink)

Fatalotti---I believe that is correct. Coincidentally Jamie Moyer was a scout for the Rough Riders during that particular raid.

Did anyone else have flashbacks of Charlie Hustle plowing into Bruce Bochy in the 1980 playoffs when Werth shows similar prowess yesterday?

It's amazing what a low batting average with RISP will do to your public perception. In mid May, fans were going to light RAJ's lawn on fire in a attempt to preemptively punish him for not signing Werth to an extension.

Now, fans will light RAJ himself on fire if he even so much as offers Werth an extension.

It's a lot more then his low batting average with RISP. If that was the case he should bench half the team right now.

What's interesting is that I remember many discussions here regarding Avg. w/RISP as not being important for some reason (same with RBIs) and you couldn't measure clutch hitting, which is utter nonsense. I think it has something to do with the fact that Pete Happy led the team last year, or at least was close to the best on the team, IIRC.

JW is the walking example of how much it matters.

aksmith: from previous thread

aksmith--What I find interesting in this discussion pertaining to Strasburg's flawed mechanics is that I never heard one word of this before yesterday.

What's up with that?

All I ever read in the Washington Pravda and the Mooney Times were how perfect his mechanics were. MASN devoted an hour hyping Strasburg and how perfect his mechanics were. That's all Campbell and Dibble talked about during Nats telecasts--Strasburg's perfect delivery and approach to pitching. It got drilled into my head.

Now Dibble gets kicked in the a-- for making the comment any color analyst would make if they were told how perfect he was and scripted to say just that.

How bad is the sports media down here in DC, that they couldn't be more honest to the public. Does investigative reporting end at the steps of the Capital Building, or the steps of Judiciary Square?

I was dumbfounded earlier today when BB inadvertently pointed out to be that Nats 3B Ryan Zimmerman had driving offenses in Arlington County, VA. He's the team's All Star, their public face. The one guy, above Polonco, who I would live to have as my 3B on my dream team. And now I first learn about his two driving issues? I mean, if Ryan Howard or Chase Utley got caught for speeding on Kelly Drive, you don't think the Philly press would be all over it?

Driving offenses are nothing. I assume he was ticked for them, and paid them.

Strasburg is the latest in a long line of pitching "phenoms" who have a very good chance of becoming victims of their own hype.

I still remember when Brien Taylor and Hideki Irabu were going to be the Whitey Ford of the 90s.

I don't know what I really mean by this, but the fact that Strasburg seemingly came out of nowhere to be so dominate raised a red flag for me.

I love Polanco, but I would take Zimmerman at third without blinking. He's the most underrated 3b and possibly overall player in baseball.

I agree, BB. As my Park Police experience on the GW Parkway has told me, and nearly all of my coworkers. VA is not like PA was back in my day. Back in my days in PA, 2 speeding tickets in three years would get your license pulled until you got below six points. In VA, 2 in one week gets a warning letter from the DMV.

But seriously. If this had happenned in Philly, you really believe the Philly press would give it a pass? I don't think so

What ever happened to having to prove that you can make it in the big leagues before you get smoldering piles of hype thrown all over you? Strasburg has already made $15 M and he's done exactly what in the big leagues? Thrown a couple pretty good games. What has he delivered to his team?

Now take a guy like Jayson Werth, who has helped a team reach two straight world series and win one. Has he even made $15 M in his entire career?

It's ridiculous how much has to be paid to hyped up rookies. Prove yourself first before you get the big pay day. And prove yourself before you get all the praise and applause.

I just think you're making a mountain out of a molehill. If Zimm got pulled over and whipped out an Armalite, then it's news. If he gets pulled over for going 25MPH over the limit on GW Parkway, ZZZZZZ. One of his citations was a license issue. He probably left it at home. Not a big deal.

I think Baez wound up hurt for the same reason as Strasburg, he was rushed to the big leagues.

JC: I know the SABERheads are going to come out of nowhere and dumbfound my old mind with statistics I can't comprehend. And I know I'm a bit of a "homey" for saying this, having lived half of my life in either Philly or DC, but...

But, IMHO Ryan Zimmerman is easily the best 3B in baseball. He would be the best 3B in baseball by far if Polonco didn't come over from the Tigers and start playing 3B this season.

BedBeard: Squonk's point is that the DC sports media is way tamer than Philly's. If Werth was stopped for speeding on Kelly Drive I guarantee there would be a story in both newspapers.

BB: I hope that is your attempt at humor.

Werth would never get stopped because he'd never run through a stop sign and be aggressive. he may get a citation for driving the wrong way on a one way.

Have we ever had a really good PED's vs. TJ surgery discussion? I mean it's totally out there but I was throwing it at my friend as a fun devil's advocate type of thing.

I mean just speaking of things that artificially extend players careers by unnatural means.

Sorry, boring news day.

Wouldn't that just increase arm stiffness?

clout: Read my reply on the other post? You'll get a chuckle out of it.

Clout: I get it. I just think it's a little silly and I'm not even convinced there never was a blurb about Zim (I'm in DC, but do avoid most of the DC Press)

As long as your name isn't Haynesworth, it is tamer here, but I have Philly cop friends and there's a bunch of "interesting" things that have gone on in recent history that haven't made it to print.

White Sox claim Manny

Squonk: Zimm is the best thirdbaseman in baseball IMHO. Beltre's having a career year, but his career #s are just OK and Zimm is a better fielder. You could also make a case for Longoria, and maybe his ability to steal bases gives him an edge, but I like Zimm's power potential better.

Sorry to read about Strasburg. Bunning is an idiot.

Sophist. Say if you were a GM, are you saying that you would pay a phenom like Strasburg below the market rate - risking that he'd be unhappy and would be looking to get out of town as soon as he could contractually?

Joe Cowley's strange and somewhat scary obsession with Werth is rivaling davthom's obsession with Coste, only on the other end of the spectrum.

If Werth got stopped now there might be a story after a pretty weak week on the basepaths it would just fit into the "absent-minded" type thing going on. If it were last year? Probably not. I mean unless he was doing 150.

I mean I get that the Philly sports media is insane, but they aren't that insane.

Iceman: Definitely.

It's just unnerving how bitter the reaction was to suggesting he be benched. It boggles the mind.

Phlipper - I think a better strategy would be to fail to sign a guy like Strasburg if you are in the position of having the worst record in baseball. The odds of him being the dominant, long term solution at pitcher are much less than a position player staying healthy and contributing.

Bryce Harper may never turn out to be anything. But the odds that this would occur because of injury problems is much less than at pitcher.

After the first few players are taken in the draft, the signing bonuses for pitchers drop precipitously. That is the time to pick up your gems. And later in the draft there will be tough high school signs like Colvin and Cosart who will cost much less. The return on this type of strategy is much higher, and certainly less risky.

I don't know the logistics of it, but iin the NFL if you pass on your draft pick, you can step back in at any later time and make the pick. If you hate the first overall pick and the pay that slot will take to sign, you can (at least you could in the past) simply drop yourself down. Maybe that is a viable strategy in the baseball draft.

Look at what Arizona did with that Loux kid. Offered him millions, then he failed his physical for TWO injuries. Now they get the 7th pick and a compenstion pick in next year's stronger draft, and the kid's a free agent.

My comment from a previous post.

I think both Dibble and Bunning should get a pass.

Bunning was a great baseball player. He became a great congressman and senator. But he's almost 80. He deserves our love and respect.

Dibble is part of the DC sports media that was told what to think, and what to say. When the wheel fell off the wagon, and things didn't turn out like projected, he gave his honest opinion, based on the information he has given and the rehearsed speach was was told to give.

I view the issue with Bunning as loving your great grandfather, who isn't wuite there right now. Dibble, he accepted everything his employer taught him, said everything they wanted him to, and when the wheel went off the wagon, he said what was best, beased on what his employer taught him.

icemean: agreed, I'm waiting for the news that Jayson Werth has been receiving death threat letters signed with the name Joe Cowley

Actually I sent him a gift pack of Barbasol...

Baez is 32 just as Contreras is 37 . . . Is the rule of thumb 'add 3 years to their reported age' for any Cuban player?

What does that make Livan Hernandez, 75?

This discussion about whether Strasburg was worth $15-million out of SD State was vetted over a year ago, when just weeks before the price tags people were talking about were $25 to $50-million.

At the time Scott Boras's comp was the $80-some million teams like the Red Sox were paying to sign Japanese pitchers.

And please, people. Strasburg's stuff was MLB ready. Google it, and read what the MLB batters who faced him said.

I have mentioned this a few time on phuturephillies.com, but one thing that can't be overlooked is going from a--maybe--90 game season in amateur ball, where a pitcher might pitcher every 6th or 10th day, to a 140-some full schedule minor league schedule, where a picher is pitching every fourth day. Part if the reason why drafted, college players take a few years to develop is because there is a big difference between NCAA and summer league ball, compared to being a pro. It takes a few years for a young body to adjust.

"It's just unnerving how bitter the reaction was to suggesting he be benched."

I don't recall anyone being "bitter." I think the word you're looking for is "incredulous."

Squonk - Nobody questioned Strasburg's stuff. His mechanics were the question.

Those Japanese pitchers have pitched full major league season, for many years in some cases. They are not nearly the injury risk that a college pitcher is.

Here's the question that needs to be asked: Is it better to sign half a dozen guys like Frazier, Workman, Cosart, Colvin, etc. for maybe 3 million dollars at most? Or is it better to sink 15 million into the Strasburg or Price basket. The answer will be different for each organization, but I think the Phillies are much better with their approach. Could they spend a million more per year and increase their odds? Sure. But they're not going to sink that much into one player. Especially one pitcher.

BB Wrote: What does that make Livan Hernandez, 75?

BB: You are correct, sir!!

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Thank you for giving us the best, and most humorously correct answer of the day.

Joe: What boggles my mind is a poster could seriously suggest that the team's second best hitter this season be benched in favor of a rookie who has shown that the only breaking pitch he can hit is a hanging slider.

BB: Sorry about the "<>" part of my post. I guess the girls I hired are on the way.

When is the last time a rookie pitcher with at least 68 IP had a K/9 of 12.2?

I gotta assume Werth was spotted in the vicinity of Joe Cowley's gf's apartment, frantically flagging down a taxi and buttoning his shirt at the same time.

Clout - They are not in a position to commit to Domonic Brown at this point, and with good reason. So it doesn't make sense to sit Werth for him. But to suggest that benching Werth for a game for playing inattentive baseball would be injurious to the team is also pretty hard to prove.

He's always been a particularly dumb baserunner. When he first got to the Phils, he had a couple of failed attempts to steal third at bad times and with bad results.

I don't think he's particularly stupid, but his baseball IQ seems pretty low when running the bases. I don't think benching him would help. He knows he did something stupid. But he seems to have baserunning ADD. Much like Von Hayes used to.

aksmith: Living here near DC. Being a Nats fan, yeah, all three of us. No, I'll stop....

The Washington Pravda went so far as to start calling this guy Jeezus. Not because he was the Massiah, but that's what batters said after an at bat. The Washington press might be pretty bad, read what the Pittsburg, Cleveland, Atlanta, New York, San Francisco, and Miami press wrote. Google it, and click on news.

My point is to be the point of reason because, really, I am a realist. Really!

aksmith: to clout-wIn summary, Briefing 101 Style: werth sit, brown play, baseball IQ.

How does that make sense?

I agree with clout to a degree. Werth needs to play. Now if the argument is Werth deserves to be benched a game for that idiotic base-running error the other day ( a la Rollins not running out a ball) that's different.

Also can I add that contrary to popular belief the sky is not falling.

"Now if the argument is Werth deserves to be benched a game for that idiotic base-running error the other day"

That's pretty much what Joe Cowley said initially. Then people started piling on him, and he began to get a little more extreme just to prove his point, I think.

Joe Cowley: It's unnerving how flippantly you dismiss Jayson Werth's contributions.

Also, his numbers with RISP are fluky. If they were some indicator of Werth's innate ability to hit in clutch situations, wouldn't he have poor numbers in the playoffs, or poor numbers with RISP in his career?

The evidence demonstrating that clutch hitting is not a skill could not be clearer.

Also, the shots at Werth's baserunning are totally overblown. As a Phillie he's stolen 72 bases in 83 attempts (86.7%).

Jayson Werth will be missed when he's gone next year. Until then, he should be starting in right field every single game.

DH Phils: There is such a thing as choking, or the yips, or whatever you want to call it. It's documented. Whether JW has that, or not, it's astonishing to me that we can say with 100% certainty that it is NOT the case.

bastardo can not be any worse than baez -- he gives us another lefty and with the potent lefty bats that both the padres and dodgers have, that has to be worth something more than a useless, washed-up mop-up guy

aksmith: IMGO, $15-million or five years, a year ago, to Strasburg was a great signing. Now it doesn't seem so smart because of the injury argument.

What the [[bleep]] are you people saying? Strasburg should shame Halliday on talent alone, in the coming years, if he already hasn't. Ain't worth 15% of Halliday's salary? $3-million a year?

Yeah, the Nats got 12 starts out of him this year, and maybe none next year, but at $3-million a year, he's still a bargain. AND he is a bargain because of everything you people mentioned. Injury potential, etc.

flipper - not sure I entirely understand your question, but Strasburg has probably already done more this year to outproduce his draft class this year and next year (even considering he's lost next year).

aksmith makes an interesting point, but players come back from TJ and Strasburg was easily the best player in that draft. Chris Carpenter, Josh Johnson, and Tim Hudson have all had TJ surgery.

sophist: Not only has Strasburg outproduced his draft class, he's sold more tickets than all of them combined. Even if he never returns to current form, it's been a good investment.

Bastardo cannot be any worse than Baez?

Sure he can. I hope he isn't. But Baez has just had three scoreless appearances in a row.

Tony Bastard may be the latest victim of the Phils' minor league pitching instruction. They have a bunch of arms at the AA and AAA level who on other teams would already be moving up to the big club. But they all have weak secondary stuff. Now they've hired Bruce Sutter to try to fix that for at least one of them. But that doesn't change the fact that Bastardo started out with a good fastball and weak change, and now, a couple years later, has a good fastball and a weak change.

Yeah, I'd bet they easily averaged over 30K per home game when he pitched.

Joe: that's fine if you're shocked people would think that the Phils' failing offense could ill afford a token benching that would more than likely have proven to be ineffective anyway, but it was days ago. Time to let it go.

I do think we've reached the point with Werth that it is so blatantly obvious he should be hitting lead-off it's starting to get ridiculous. Whether or not the RISP is a fluke or not, Werth was always best suited to be the lead-off guy in this lineup...couple that with his continuing inability to drive in runs, yet getting on base so often that it really does seem like (and has for some time) most of his stats are 'empty,' and I just don't get how nobody on the coaching staff has suggested it to Manuel at some point. Yeah, nobody is hitting right now- but Werth sees a lot of pitches and gets on base a lot. Once Utley and Howard get going, it would help to have someone hitting ahead of them that actually gets on base from time to time. Right now Rollins and Vic are probably the two worst candidates for that role, and they're 1-2 in the order most nights.

@heather -- here is what we know:

Stats with small samples like RISP vary from year to year. They are rarely a predictor of future success. Overtime, years in fact, these numbers fall in line with career averages.

We also have the data that Werth's overall numbers are close to his performance last year and indicate a slight variation, but nothing dramatic (Actually they are BETTER!!!!). We do know that a greater sample of data (his power numbers against LHP have dropped significantly).

There are documented cases of yips, for sure, but I have never seen it applied to batting. (throwing a ball to first, pitching, putting, etc) But those cases aren't situational and the contextually for this argument probably don't apply. Yips occur in all situations and not just the "pressure" situation.

We can't say for 100% certainty that it is not the case. But we can be 99% sure given the years of statistics in relation to RISP and other small samples. Because your reasoning follows little logic and no proof whatsoever.

And further, and this is the article that I use to prove the madness with trying to calculate who is clutch:

Since 1972, the #25 most clutch Major League Baseball player??? VON HAYES

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=betweenthenumbers/ortiz/060405


I should restate: Strasburg is a real talent. And if he has a Carpenter type career, I don't think anyone who pays him will feel cheated. But that's a big if. It is likely he will be fine after TJ surgery. That seems to be the norm these days. But someone is going to have to work on his delivery or he's going to have chronic problems.

Pitching is not all about stuff. Nobody had better stuff than Roger Clemens in college. But they overpitched him and he ripped one of the muscles that stabilize the scapula. He never got it fixed and learned to pitch around it. But look at his delivery in slo mo. He adapted by doing a lot of thinks right. In fact, his release is pure perfection.

If someone grabs Strasburg and fixes his delivery, he could have a non-PED Clemens type dominant career. How knows about the longevity. But as far as dominance, there is no reason he shouldn't be there. The real problem will be if he goes the Prior/Wood route. Then a lot of the time, his team will be scrambling to replace him due to injury. It's potentially very disruptive. Look at the Cards and what they've had to do when Carpenter isn't healthy. Same with Hudson and the Braves. They can take their team down for a year at a time.

The 15 mil for Strasburg was a lot, but it shouldn't be a reason to torpedo a franchise. It's not 105 mil to Kevin Brown or 100 mil for Dice-K. And it only causes real problems if it stops spending later in the draft. It's entirely possible that the Nats can pay 15 mil for a Strasburg, and still load up on later HS tough sign kids. But I don't know if they did.

If they do that, then they will beat the Phillies every time because they're combining the best of both strategies.

aksmith - if the problem with a HS pitching prospect is mechanics, good scouting will pick it up, right? Is there a consensus that his delivery is the cause of the injury?

Don't know about a consensus. But I look for certain things in a delivery and he's doing at least two and often three things that can be injurious.

I felt that way the first time I saw him pitch. But I constantly refer people to Mike Marshall's mechanics, so what I say doesn't count to those who teach pitching in mlb, and just about anyone who instructs in college or high school.

There are some people who are just freaks of nature and they can overcome mechanical/kinesiological flaws and have a long productive career anyway. The fact that he buckled twice now under a moderate load tells me he's not likely one of those guys.

Someday, I'll bore everyone with the story of my multiple shoulder surgeries due in large part to poor mechanics. But after going to med school and studying anatomy, I came to the conclusion I'd been poorly coached. And then Mike Marshall went much further and addressed the same concerns and more.

Matt Gelb: "Left Coast Lineup: Rollins 6, Polanco 5, Utley 4, Howard 3, Werth 9, Ibañez 7, Victorino 8, Ruiz 2, Oswalt 1"

Oh good. The usual failure formation.

I read somewhere that Oswalt has already endured a 3-0 loss to Latos & the Padres this season. I'm confident, though. Confident the Phillies can do their newest SP a few Runs worse than the Astors did, that is.

Why are we batting our LF 9th?

Gtown - Of note is that Oswalt went 7 IP in that start and gave up no runs (3 H, 2 BB, 7 K). Brandon Lyon, that dude that the Phils couldn't hit last week, gave up 3 runs in the 8th.

Sophist: I did not know that. And I now feel even worse.

Philly killer Cameron Maybin leads off with a HR. Game's on MLB Network.

Dave - let's hope Oswalt can go more than 7 and match Latos' goose eggs. Padres are watching Latos' innings. Of course, the best pen in the NL comes after him.

Logan Morrison follows with a HR. Tough start for Hanson.

(Chollie barges from office into locker room, holding an open book.)

Manuel – Okay you bleeping guys...{looks at book}...I’ve had as much bleeping bleep as I can bleeping take! You need to start bleeping playing like you bleeping mean it! You gotta hit with bleeping focus and run the bleeping bases with your bleeping heads screwed on right...

Utley – {interrupting} Coach?

Manuel – {points at Chase} Wait! {looks at book, turns a few pages – Lopes comes over and points} Oh, right: none of your bleeping interruptions! {Pointedly stomps} I’m putting my bleeping foot down! If you have something to bleeping say, then say it on the bleeping field!

Rollins – But...

Manuel – I’m not done!!

Lopes{pointing at the book} - Bleeping done.

Manuel – Oh, right. I’m not bleeping done!! My sainted grandma could bleeping hit better than you guys are bleeping hitting! If you don’t wanna bleeping play the bleeping game you can just tell me now! I don’t need to put your name on the bleeping line-up card!

{long silence while Manuel turns a few pages and looks}

Manuel – {Kicks a chair over, kicks a locker, and tosses the book across the room} Any bleeping questions? {very short pause} No? Good! {He storms out of the room. Rollins picks up the book and looks at it.}

Utley – What is it J-Roll?

Rollins – Managing for Dummies: A Step by Step Guide

Howard – What?

Rollins – By D. Green and L. Bowa.

Utley – Do you think he knows he’s supposed to curse for real and not say “bleep?”

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