In incredibly pathetic fashion, the Phillies handed the Diamondbacks their 39th win last night in Phoenix. The team only managed to muster together three hits against the team with the highest number of hits allowed all season.
Not how you want to start a crucial road trip.
It was a rather listless effort from the Phillies in every facet of the game. Outside of a Bryce Harper (he’s really good) home run, everyone looked sluggish. When in the middle of a playoff race, you can have those type of games. You especially can’t have those type of games against teams with sub-.400 winning percentages.
Kyle Gibson didn’t look bad at all. Outside of one mistake pitch to Josh VanMeter, Gibson looked like he has for the first few starts. He gave the Phillies a chance to win, and that’s what you expect from a starting pitcher. It’s just too bad his mistake resulted in a two-run home run.
The most concerning part of the game, and really the last seven games, has been the manager. Joe Girardi has been awful this entire season and there isn’t any way around that. From roster construction to player usage, Girardi has pushed all the wrong buttons this year. It is clear that Girardi has his ‘guys’ who he has given long, long leashes to. If he didn’t, then there would be no reason why he would continue to bat Odubel Herrera in the leadoff spot.
Girardi has struck again recently, with his decision to bench Alec Bohm. I totally understand that Bohm has been abysmal defensively this season. However, with Rhys Hoskins out, there is absolutely no reason why Bohm shouldn’t be getting the reps at first base. Brad Miller, besides the dramatic homeruns, has not been good this season. He is a 31-year-old journeyman who has played on five teams in his major league career.
Bohm, on the other hand, just turned 25 and was the third overall pick for the team back in 2018. While he hasn’t hit for much power this year, Bohm has been an above average hitter over the last three months. Just check the stats. His defense has been an issue, but offensively, he has rebounded from his dreadful start to the season.
It seems as if that has been lost on Joe, though. When asked about the break, Girardi said the team could no longer weigh individual development more than team success.
“You have to think about winning right now,” Girardi said. “It’s not April 15, right? It’s August. So, you’ve got to think about winning right now.”
If that was the case, then Bohm would be in the lineup. Even with his lackluster defensive, he has been one of the Phillies better hitters over the last three months. For a team that has been clamoring for homegrown talent since 2008, Girardi has certainly not help develop that.
And it’s not just Bohm.
He didn’t let Nick Maton work out of his slump earlier in the year. He refuses to give Mickey Moniak, who’s been on a tear in Triple A, a chance to play in the Bigs. His reasoning with Moniak is because he doesn’t see him as a CF. But he sees Odubel as one?
As much as I appreciate Ronald Torreyes, outside of a few series, he has been below average. Travis Jankowski has been in a month long slump, but keeps getting chances night in and night out. The aforementioned Herrera has made countless blunders in the field, at bat, and on the base paths, but he still gets every shot to play CF.
If you want to win, you have to play the best lineup every night. You can’t mix that up with the lineup you trust the most. If Girardi actually wanted to win, he would see that players like Bohm and Moniak give him a better chance than Miller and Herrera. Girardi has done nothing to build any confidence with the fanbase this season. If the Phillies don’t make the playoffs this season, it is time to make a move.
Girardi came into Philadelphia with a lot of hope due to his managerial career with the Yankees. However, those teams only won one World Series title.
To me, those Yankee teams should have won more than one World Series with all the talent they had. How much of that falls on Girardi?
If this year is any indication, I would say that much of that falls on the feet of Girardi.