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!
Giants closer Hunter Strickland had an ugly top of the ninth inning Monday night against the Marlins. He allowed three runs, serving up a walk, a double, another walk, and two singles. The Marlins overcome a 4-2 deficit and went on to win 5-4.
Unhappy with his performance, Strickland punched a door and fractured his pitching hand. He will undergo surgery and will miss six to eight weeks, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports.
That’s a huge loss for the Giants, as Strickland has been terrific, Monday’s start notwithstanding. He carries a 2.84 ERA with 13 saves and a 29/13 K/BB ratio in 31 2/3 innings. Manager Bruce Bochy said Tony Watson or Sam Dyson will fill in at closer while Strickland is out, per Pavlovic.
Bochy said that he is “disappointed” and “crushed” about Strickland’s injury, noting that the right-hander had grown a lot as a pitcher and as a person, Pavlovic adds.
Strickland has a problem with anger, it appears. He exacted revenge on Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper last year, throwing a 98 MPH fastball at him, then punched him in the head when the two brawled. Strickland wanted revenge because, in the 2014 playoffs, Harper stared at a home run he hit off of Strickland.