Phillies Romb and early Valentine?

Good Morning Sports fans!

Pitching was key last night as the Philadelphia Phillies took Game 3 of the NLCS with an 11-0 romb over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Phillies starter Cliff Lee went eight innings with ten strikeouts in the game while his teammates destroyed Dodgers starter Hiroki Kuroda very early on in the ball game. Even after Kuroda was pulled from the ball game, the Phillies still continued to attack the Dodgers on the base paths and maintained a steady lead.

Whenever Cliff Lee pitches, whether it was for the Indians or the Phillies, the team around him tends to play better and seems to be more comfortable in the field. Lee is almost always able to get run support and pitch strong into the later innings of the ball game. Having the former AL Cy Young award winner start Game 3 was a smart move because it gave him an opportunity to pitch in front of his home crowd in what could end up being a crucial game in this series.

For Game 4, the Dodgers will be coming out swinging and looking to even the series again. Even though they got shut out in Game 3, their lineup and leadership is talented enough not to let a bad game stand in their way of making the World Series. Dodgers Manager Joe Torre has been in this situation numerous times before and his leadership will help wake the Dodger bats for the next game of the series.

Moving to the American League, the Indians reported that former Mets Manager Bobby Valentine will do a second interview for the vacant manager position. Valentine, who has been managing in Japan the past few seasons, has a good reputation as a manager and can make a team competitive. He has proven he can win ball games and would be a good choice for the Indians. The Indians don’t have much in terms of a lineup but Valentine’s experience will help him get the most of what he has to work with.

It has also been reported that former Nationals Manager, Manny Acta, will receive a second interview from the Indians for their manager position. Acta was fired last season from the Washington Nationals after the team got off to a very slow start and never recovered from it. Acta may be able to relate well to the Indians young players, however, he was not very successful in leading the Nationals. Similar to the Indians, the Nationals have an owner who does not provide much direction for the team, signs older and past-their-prime free agents and has made other poor business decisions related to the ball club. Acta was not able to win with the limited talent he had in Washington, which makes it hard to believe he can win with a team like the Indians.

Another key point that is interesting to this matter is the fact the Indians want to hire a new manager before the World Series is over with. This might seem like a good strategy on paper, however, the Indians may be losing out on other candidates by rushing the process. Dodgers Hitting Coach Don Mattingly has expressed interest in managing a big league ball club some day, Yankees Bench Coach Tony Pena was once the manager of the Kansas City Royals, and former Twins first base coach Paul Molitar may  have been worth an interview if interested. These coaches may have limited or less successful managerial experience but would be worth interviewing to see if they would be a fit for the Indians. These coaches I mentioned may not be looking to leave their current posts but you don’t know unless you ask.  The more candidates the Indians interview, the better chances they have of finding the right person to manage the young ball club.

That’s it for now. Keep it real.

Jeff

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~ by jeffrsabo on October 19, 2009.

2 Responses to “Phillies Romb and early Valentine?”

  1. Jeff, maybe you can shed more light on the Indians for me living out of state. Have Triv and everyone else been calling for Shapiro to get fired? To me is seems like he should also take some of the blame it was not all Eric Wedge, after all he was behind the deals to trade Cliff Lee, Victor Martinez and other good Cleveland players. In fact I’m suprised that Grady Sizemore and Travis Hafner haven’t been traded away yet. I love both of those guys and they seem to be the only good quality major league players left in Cleveland.

    • Bridget,

      I am not sure what Triv has been saying about Shapiro but the Indians General Manager has been taking heat from the Plain Dealer and the other sports casters in the area. He has received a lot of criticism for his bad trades and decimation of the team.

      I agree with you that it was not all Wedge’s fault. Shapiro has made some lousy trades and we are seeing the effects of it now. He has traded for crummy talent and we have missed out on a lot of opportunities as a result of having to get rid of veterans.

      Grady has been hurt but has a chance of being traded. Hafner’s injuries have limited him to only being able to serve as a DH so his value is way down. He would be useless to a National League team because he can’t play in the field.

      Jeff

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