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Time to Turn off the Lights for “Lights Out”

Posted by David Foley On August - 15 - 2009

Brad Lidge recorded his 8th blown save of the season in the Phils 4-3 loss today. Was it all his fault? The Phillies failed to capitalize on some crucial situations with runners in scoring position (clearly the bane of their existence this year), so feasibly he should have had a larger lead to work with. Still Lidge was the one who loaded the bases without getting a single out, so he is at least partially at fault for the outcome.

To put his struggles into perspective, Since July 22nd Lidge has allowed at least one hit in seven out of his nine appearances, allowed at least one earned run in four out of nine, and his K:BB ratio (8:5) isn’t anywhere near where it was last season.

The Phillies insist he isn’t hurt, but at this point given Lidge’s recent performance that comes off more as wishful thinking than anything else. Something is clearly wrong with him whether it is mental or physical, and the Phils have to hope either a demotion or DL stint can fix it or Brett Myers can recover from his mysterious eye injury and take over the closer role. To those of you suggesting Madson should close, look back to late June when he blew three saves over a two week span. We don’t want to put him (or us) through that again.

Before you accuse me of jumping the gun and unnecessarily burying Lidge, let me say that I still love the guy, and I still believe he can be a dominant closer, but I don’t believe for a second he is pitching anywhere near 100% right now. Over the past few weeks he’s looked like the Brad Lidge of 2007 with Houston (where he coincidentally blew eight saves) rather than the Lidge of ’08. If the Phillies had a comfortable division lead we might be able to afford letting him work out of this funk, but given how close the race has gotten the Phils just can’t put it off any longer.

Interesting/Unfortunate Factoid of the Day

This comes courtesy of STATS:

Brad Lidge of the Phillies becomes just the 5th player since 1954 to have a loss, blown save and two errors in one game.

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  • http://twitter.com/JGiansante Joseph Giansante

    not only was he the one who loaded the bases with no outs, he also threw the ball away and was charged with 2 errors that led to the tying run coming across and putting a man at third when there should have been one away and one on second.

    It's time to at LEAST put him on the DL and get him some time off. He needs to get his shit together or he's gonna find himself on the block.

  • riccaboni

    Yes, the offense did fail to score runners from third base several times but when lidge got the ball they had a lead! I'm tired of the stats and hearing about trouble moving runners if your winning, leave the stats to the broadcasters. All the talk I hear about the last out being the hardest and closers have it rough, well let me tell you if you were a welder and 8 times out of 30 your welds failed, you would be an unemployed welder.

  • http://twitter.com/romez Roman Zubarev

    Very nice Lidge vs Welder analogy. Like Kieran said, he may benefit from a demotion to clear up whatever is ailing him physically or mentally. I'm nervous every time he takes the mound.

  • http://twitter.com/phillyfoley David Foley

    Kieran?!? ;)

  • http://twitter.com/romez Roman Zubarev

    Correction, Fizzoley wrote this piece. I was really confused while reading this and thinking Kieran had wrote it all along. = )

  • http://twitter.com/kierankelly Kieran Kelly

    Haha. Good thing I looked here before writing, because I was about to write pretty much the same thing Foley.

    I agree, there needs to be something done with Lidge. Clearly, something is up with him.

    This is not the same pitcher who was perfect in save opportunities and got the final out for the 2008 World Fucking Champions. Something is going on.

    Yes, the offense has failed with RISP a million times already this season, but Lidge needs to be able to nail down a 1 run save. He'll have to do it in the playoffs, so get used to it now.

  • fireericbruntlett

    If we do take Lidge out of the role, then I have one question for you, Foley: who do we put in the closer role? You specifically said “Not Madson,” which I agree with. I also agree that Myers could work in the role, but he has to come back first. So, until Myers is fully healthy, who is our closer?

  • thumpbump

    Fire Milt Thompson, this team scratched last year and this year – so many wasted opportunities.

    Yet, regardless of the lead on Saturday, Lidge would've blown it.

  • thumpbump

    Fire Milt Thompson, this team scratched last year and this year – so many wasted opportunities.

    Yet, regardless of the lead on Saturday, Lidge would've blown it.

  • http://fireericbruntlett.wordpress.com/2009/08/19/lets-play-a-game/ Let’s play a game… « Fire Eric Bruntlett

    [...] Phinally Philly, Foley also suggested that he either demote (to the minors or a different bullpen role) or DL. He [...]

  • http://www.fireericbruntlett.com/?p=94 Fire Eric Bruntlett » Blog Archive » Let's play a game…

    [...] Phinally Philly, Foley also suggested that he either demote (to the minors or a different bullpen role) or DL. He [...]

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