© 2009 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.
11/02/09 2:02 AM EST
Blanton's 'real good job' goes for naught
Phillies Game 4 starter gives up four runs in six innings
By David Gurian-Peck / MLB.com
PHILADELPHIA -- Charlie Manuel is sick of talking about his decision not to bring back Cliff Lee on short rest. "I've answered that about 10 times in the last two days," the Phillies manager said. "Maybe 25."
Then in the fifth, he issued a four-pitch leadoff walk to Nick Swisher. An infield single and two bloop hits later, Blanton had another two runs charged to his name. "Three bleeders, there's not a lot you can do," Blanton said of that fifth inning. "You make good pitches, and sometimes the bounces go your way and sometimes they don't. I just happened to be on the bad side of the breaks today." When he left after six innings -- allowing those four runs on five hits and two walks -- the Yankees led by two, but Philadelphia would tie it in the eighth before suffering a crushing loss in the ninth. But Blanton, as always, was not overly devastated -- or verbose -- during his postgame reflections. He may be the best illustration of the Phillies' cliched-but-true take-it-as-it-comes attitude. All year long, whether throughout his outstanding midseason stretch or after a rare tough loss, his explanation has been simple: Get the ball, throw the ball, try to make pitches. He may not have looked like Cliff Lee did in Game 1, but Sunday, Blanton made more than enough quality pitches to set up Pedro Feliz's game-tying homer in the eighth. "Joe did a great job today," Jimmy Rollins said, "and we just didn't close it out at the end."
SURE THING NO MORE
David Gurian-Peck is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.