Thursday, September 08, 2005

Lack of support? Only on the field

Before the game Wednesday night, closer Billy Wagner talked about the fans not being behind the Phillies in their chase for the wild card.

He complained about the booing.

He said there are fans out there hoping that the Phillies lose.

He talked about the empty seats for a big series against the Astros.

After the game, an 8-6 loss to Astros, the fifth consecutive setback in a September pennant race and the 12th straight loss to the Astros, Wagner was forced to talk about giving up a game-winning homer to friend and former teammate Craig Biggio.

"It's tough," Wagner said. "We've really played three great ball games, and to come up on the losing end three times is how it is right now. If we dwell on that and wait for things to happen when we play Florida, we'll find ourselves really out of this."

Too late, Billy. You are out of it. The numbers may not say so, but the play on the field has spoken.

The Phillies were in each of the three games, but they did not play three great games as Wagner said.

The facts show big errors, poor baserunning, double-clutching, lack of hitting from the middle of the lineup and a bullpen that failed in all three games. Call it well balanced failure.

Inquirer columnist Phil Sheridan said it well: "When you know you have to win, and you lose, that's failure. When you lose and lose and lose and lose and lose, stringing together a five-game losing streak at the worst time, that defines your team."

This is all about the team and has nothing to do with the fans. They don't want the Phillies to lose, that is absurd. They just know what's going to happen. History has a way of repeating itself ... over and over again.

The question remains for all of the players, manager, general manager and ownership: "Why does this always happen?"

Take a look in the mirror, boys.


At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's almost limitless blame to be passed around, including giving Manuel his share. I'm curious about Sheridan's headline today, because this ...

Players, not skipper, deserve the blame

doesn't jive with this ...

"Do not look here for the Charlie Manuel manager-of-the-year nomination. That's not what this is about. He does some questionable things, but then, so do other managers."

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