Has Charlie Manuel Lost The Clubhouse?

May 16th, 2011 by Mike H. | Filed under Baseball, Phillies.

The Phillies offense has been undescribably bad. They’ve now lost three straight games with Oswalt heading to the hill for the first time since coming off the disabled list. They also get the “pleasure” of matching up against Jaime Garcia, who already has five wins with a sub-two earned run average. Which doesn’t bode well for a team struggling to get hits as it is.

The skipper is on record with stating that he wants this team to hit for more power. The Phillies currently are 11th in the National League in Slugging Percentage. They are 10th in the National League in home runs hit. They have also hit the least amount of home runs in the division. Where I also would love for the lineup to hit for more power, that just isn’t this team. Ryan Howard is your ONLY consistent home run threat, and teams are starting to not even give the “Big Piece” pitches to hit.

So have the players started to give up on Charlie? None would ever admit to quitting on the manager, but the ambivilance and complacency seem to be shrouding this team. Even the defensive side of the ball has been lacking. A usually defensive steady Rollins has wavered recently. I don’t doubt that age could be a factor in all of this either.

Or is it all just the injuries starting to pile up? Going around the diamond, Utley’s “replacements” have proven why they are just replacements. Polanco’s sore back kept him from starting in the opener in St. Louis, giving way to Wilson Valdez AND Pete Orr being in the starting lineup. Shane Victorino’s absence from the lineup hurt the team by keeping both Ibanez and Francisco in the lineup. Both have struggled this month and one needs to sit. With Ibanez’ large salary, he most likely isn’t going to be moved.  That leaves Francisco and his under two million dollar salary, so take a seat, whether it be here or in AAA.

Who knows what will ignite this lineup? Hopefully the return of Chase Utley (and Dom Brown?) will provide that spark. At this point, firing Manuel seems far from likely as he signed that two year extension before the season started. So if the Phillies don’t start hitting, and soon, Greg Gross could be heading to the unemployment line.

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2 Responses to “Has Charlie Manuel Lost The Clubhouse?”

  1. SteveR says:

    why am i reading this site again?

  2. DjChris Wright says:

    i was amused at how your article began with charlie possibly being the issue, then you line up and then totally explain all the REAL reasons that they’re in a slump. Hmm..