The Phillies are down 2-1 with CC
Sabathia awaiting them in Game 4 on Sunday night. Sounds pretty
ominous, right? Not if you’re Charlie Manuel. He still plans on
sticking with Joe Blanton.
The Yankees are no-doubt licking
their chops to face Blanton, who hasn’t appeared in a game since
October 19. Here’s just a sampling of a few Yankees’ past success against Blanton:
Derek Jeter: 4-for-12 (.333) with one walk, one home run and three RBI
Alex Rodriguez: 4-for-7 (.571) with three walks, two home runs and five RBI
Mark Teixeira: 9-for-27 (.333) with one home run, three home runs and seven RBI
The big question this morning is
“Why not Lee?” He has a 0.54 ERA, 0.69 WHIP and 30/3 K/BB ratio in four
starts this postseason, including a masterful performance in Game 1.
While it’s true that Lee has never
started on three day’s rest, the fallout of Manuel’s decision is
wide-reaching. Even if the Phillies win Game 5 with Lee on the hill,
they will be forced to start Pedro Martinez in Game 6 and most likely
Cole Hamels in a possible Game 7 at Yankee Stadium. After Hamels’
comments following Saturday’s loss, that can’t be encouraging for
Phillies fans. Meanwhile, Joe Girardi has his ace lined up for a
possible Game 7, if it gets that far.
Giving Lee three starts give the Phillies their best — and perhaps only — chance to win.