In a pregame conversation Friday, Charlie Manuel volunteered this about his bullpen:
“Like I said before, I like our talent in our bullpen. But it's the experience and the fact that we are inconsistent. That location-command part comes from the fact that our pitchers are inexperienced. If possible, if we could address some of that, I think we would definitely be in a position to see if we could finish strong.”
During the Phillies' 7-2 loss to the San Francisco Giants, Manuel's actions matched his words. That's when he let Vance Worley, with a triple-figure pitch count in the sixth, pitch to Brandon Crawford ... whose grand slam put the game out of reach for the floundering Phillies offense.
His choices essentially amounted to either lefty Jeremy Horst or right-handed Michael Schwimmer, who had been loosened in the bullpen.
"It's tough of me to put one of those kids in a bases loaded, one-out situation in a game right now," Manuel said. "That's kind of tough. I still felt that Worley had enough. I still felt that he was my best option."
It was his best option ... and his best way, apparently, to send the SOS to the front office: More bullpen help ... and now.
Check out my column on the Phillies and their struggles in the Daily Times Saturday and, as always, on delcotimes.com