It probably doesn’t matter. Late season road trip against the worst team in baseball. Nothing to truly play for at the moment other than good health. The Phillies can be forgiven for dropping a couple of games against the Astros. Charlie Manuel isn’t all that willing to let it slide, however. Here’s Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com:
Manuel had strong words for his team during a clubhouse meeting after it played another sloppy game in a 5-2 loss (see game breakdown) to the lowly Houston Astros on Tuesday night. “We had a little talk,” Manuel admitted. “Not a big talk.” The message: “Just be more alert and play the game how we can,” he said.
Manuel was soft-selling the meeting. Word from the clubhouse was he rattled some cages pretty soundly.
I sure hope he didn’t criticize Ryan Howard. Dear Lord, the Phillies fans would turn on him in the drop of a hat!
Things got a little wild in the fifth inning of Game 7 of the ALCS on Saturday. With one out and runners at the corners, Astros’ right-hander Charlie Morton fired a 1-1 fastball to Todd Frazier. Frazier returned the ball to third baseman Alex Bregman, who tossed a perfect throw over to Brian McCann at the plate just as Greg Bird came charging home. McCann’s setup was flawless, nailing Bird as he slid into the plate and nullifying the Yankees’ first real attempt to get on the board.
That’s as close as the Yankees have come to scoring so far. The Astros took an early 1-0 lead with Evan Gattis‘ 405-footer off of CC Sabathia in the top of the fourth inning. Jose Altuve chimed in with an opposite-field solo shot in the fifth, while McCann followed his lead-preserving tag with an equally jaw-dropping two-out, two-RBI double. Houston currently leads 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth.