October 17, 2012 |
ST. LOUIS - Kyle Lohse is all about efficiency, about avoiding extended at-bats and letting hitters get themselves out. The St. Louis Cardinals are in a spot where they could really use that kind of game. When he takes the mound Wednesday against the San Francisco Giants, the 16-game winner can pitch his team into the lead of an NL Championship Series tied at one game apiece. St. Louis has gone three straight games without a starter getting an out in the fifth inning. Lohse gets a chance to end that troubling trend when he faces Matt Cain in a matchup of 16-game winners.
August 16, 2012
AS THE Phillies play out 2 months worth of games that are more about pride than playoff implications, the discussion of Charlie Manuel's future crops up almost daily. Even in the best of times, and that includes a 102-victory season and two consecutive World Series appearances, Manuel has received constant criticism for game management, lineup decisions and his unwavering faith in veterans like Jimmy Rollins - even as that faith seems, at times, to go unappreciated and unrewarded. Now, though, amid a season sabotaged by injuries, faulty roster construction and a traded-out minor league system, there is a daily drumbeat that sounds something like this: He is too easy on players; his in-game decisions cost his team games; he is not as smart as the managers he goes up against, particularly in the playoffs.
January 27, 2012
AT HIS Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2005, Ryne Sandberg gravitated toward his people. Ozzie Smith, Cal Ripken, Joe Morgan, Robin Yount. Second baseman, shortstops, guys who could play their position well and hit for average and hit it out of the park. Two summers later, Sandberg naturally gravitated toward his people again at the annual ceremony. Only this time the names were guys like Tommy Lasorda and Earl Weaver - ham-and-eggers as players, world champions as managers.
November 1, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - Tony La Russa retired as manager of the St. Louis Cardinals yesterday, 3 days after winning a dramatic, seven-game World Series against the Texas Rangers. "I think this just feels like it's time to end it," the 67-year-old La Russa said at a news conference at Busch Stadium. The World Series win over Texas was the third of La Russa's 33-year career. The manager guided the Cardinals to the championship despite being 10 1/2 games behind Atlanta on Aug. 25 for the final playoff spot in the National League.
October 26, 2011
HUBRIS. That should have been Tony La Russa's explanation for what happened Monday night. Overconfidence that he had thought this thing down to its last detail, was rolling the dice just a bit, and believed that his players would perform exactly as he had calculated they would. It would have worked a lot better than the faulty phone testimony he employed afterward, opening him up to the kind of scrutiny "Law & Order" defendants receive. Indeed, when La Russa was brought back in for more testimony on the offday yesterday, someone began a question like this: "To the best of your recollection . . . " Honest to God. Trained in law before deciding on baseball 4 decades ago, La Russa was up to the task yesterday.
October 7, 2011 |
It's not hard to sense the tone Charlie Manuel wants to set before one of the most pivotal games of his managerial career. "We've earned a right to get here, and this is the biggest game we're going to play, and things are going to work out for us," the Phillies manager said about Friday's Game 5 of the National League division series against the St. Louis Cardinals. Sure, for all their playoff experience, it's the first time any of these Phillies have been in a postseason game where it's all on the line for both teams.
October 4, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - The esteemed manager applies principles of Japanese philosophy and preaches the concept of mastery of the game of baseball. But enough about Charlie Manuel. Two games into this series between very different, very successful baseball lifers, the most jarring aspect has been how similar things have gone for Manuel and Tony La Russa. One is lionized as a genius and one is misunderstood because, well, he's hard to understand sometimes. But their teams are 1-1 going into Tuesday's Game 3 due partly to managerial decisions.
October 3, 2011 |
DOWN 4-0 TO Cliff Lee, their best pitcher Chris Carpenter battered, the Cardinals really should have been in trouble last night at Citizens Bank Park. But it was still early. "Had it been the eighth inning, it would have been more of a panic-type feeling," Cardinals second baseman Ryan Theriot said. Instead of panicking, the Cardinals started hitting. And pitching. They got to Lee for 12 hits and five runs. Six relief pitchers gave up exactly one hit in the last six innings.
October 2, 2011 |
Lance Berkman began Game 1 of the NL division series Saturday with a three-run homer and ended it wondering why the Phillies fans in Citizens Bank Park's left-field stands were calling his name. In between, he, like the rest of the Cardinals, were baffled by Roy Halladay's determined pitches. "That," said the Cardinals leftfielder of the Phils' starter, "is why they pay him $22 million. " For five innings or so, it looked as if Berkman's first-inning homer had deflated the Phillies and the sellout crowd.
September 25, 1997 |
Cito Gaston, who guided the Toronto Blue Jays to consecutive World Series titles in 1992 and 1993 but has not managed a winning team since, was fired yesterday. Coach Mel Queen will manage Toronto's final five games. Gaston, 53, departs with a record of 681-635, winning AL Eastern Division titles in 1989, 1991, 1992 and 1993. The Jays defeated the Atlanta Braves in the 1992 World Series and the Phillies in 1993. Gaston, who had been the manager of the Blue Jays since 1989, was one of two active managers (Minnesota's Tom Kelly is the other)