Tag:Brad Lidge
Posted on: August 16, 2009 12:18 pm

Time to put the "Lights Out" for good?

Due in large part to committing 2 throwing errors himself, Brad Lidge blew another save yesterday, his 8th of the season and 2nd in 5 days.  While his struggles earlier in the season can be at least partially attributed to his knee injury, this doesn't appear to be a issue anymore. 

The big question is who closes if Lidge doesn't?  Ryan Madson was less than impressive filling in as the closer during Lidge's DL stint earlier this season.  Brett Myers was effective as a closer in 2007 (and didn't want to go back to starting), but he's still rehabbing after his hip injury.  And now there's the issue of his eye being injured, and how it actually happened.  He at first told the Phillies that it was from playing catch with his 4-year-old son; now he's saying that he slipped while getting out of his truck.  Aside from the fact that this has delayed his rehab, it raises questions of what REALLY happened, and why he felt the need to lie about it.  J.C. Romero experienced tightness in his forearm during a rehab outing on Friday night and will get an MRI, so he's out of the equation.  There's no one else in the bullpen who is a closer.

Looking outside the 25-man roster, I don't see them getting a closer who'd be an improvement over Lidge through a trade as I'm sure they'd never get anyone of that caliber through waivers.  According to Jim Salisbury's column in the Inquirer this morning, Reading pitcher Scott Mathieson, who had two reconstructive surgeries on his elbow in 2007, has gotten his velocity back in the 92-98 MPH range, and is just working on his location.  Could he be an answer?

There is one other option that might be considered: have Pedro Martinez close, and put Jamie Moyer back in the rotation.  For now, that's a move that would appear to weaken the rotation, but his demotion to the bullpen might put a fire into Moyer that we haven't seen from him.  Right now, Moyer is wasting away in the bullpen, and let's face it, if it had been someone BESIDES Jamie Moyer in that situation, he probably would've either been waived or sent down to the minors.  The move would also cut down on the amount of innings that Pedro would have to work.  It might not be the ideal solution, but it might have to be done come October.

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 9, 2009 3:27 pm

Lidge Goes on DL

The Phillies placed closer Brad Lidge on the 15-day DL today (retroactive to June 7).  Lidge who has been pitching with pain in his right (pushoff) knee all season, has been far less effective than he was in 2008 (0-3, 7.27 ERA this season).  He has converted only 13 of 19 save opportunities, and opponents are hitting .306 against him.  Lidge blew 2 saves this past weekend in Los Angeles (the Phillies lost both games), after telling David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News that his knee was still bothering him before the series began.  Presumably Ryan Madson will step into the closer's role while Lidge is out, and J.C. Romero will take over Madson's role as the setup man.

The Phillies filled Lidge's spot on the 25-man active roster by recalling 36-year-old catcher Paul Bako from Reading (AA).  Bako hit .357 in 10 games at Reading, and his recall might help solidify the Phillies' bench, was has struggled this year, by giving them an extra catcher and allowing them to use Chris Coste as a pinch-hitter.

If the reports about Lidge's knee are true (no tears or serious damage, just inflammation), then hopefully a couple of weeks of rest will allow him to heal without needing more surgery.  The best thing the Phillies could do would be to let him rest now and come back at 100% for the second half of the season, as I wrote three weeks ago:


Who says that CBSSports.com's team bloggers don't know what they're talking about?
Category: MLB
Posted on: May 16, 2009 3:31 pm

Should Brad Lidge go on the DL?

After watching Brad Lidge blow another save last night, you have to wonder if the "knee inflammation" he was diagnosed with a few weeks ago is more serious than reported.  Going into today's DH at Washington, his numbers for the season are this:  0-1, 9.19 ERA, 5 saves, 2 blown saves.  He's also allowed runs in 6 straight appearances.  He's gone from "Lights-out Lidge", to "Light 'em up Lidge" as one of my buddies put it last night.

Lidge did develop a rep as a closer who was "damaged" (for lack of better words) by the home run he gave up into Albert Pujols in the playoffs a few years ago, and definitely struggled for the Astros after that, becoming a prime example of a player who needed a change of scenery.  He got it with the trade to the Phillies last year, and he responded great, going 38-for-38 in save opportunities. 

Watching him pitch rght now, i don't think it's mental.  I think that his knee is still bothering him and affecting his ability to pitch.  Lidge himself said that it's most noticable when he pushes off from the rubber.  If that's the case, it's gotta be affecting the speed on his fastball, and probably him being able to locate his slider. 

This is the same knee that he had surgery on twice last year.  An MRI he had a few weeks ago revealed no major damage, just inflammation, but maybe a couple of weeks on the DL will give him a chance to rest and let it heal.  With the way he's pitching, they might as well put him on now, but if they can hold out for a couple of more weeks, they could put Lidge on the DL, have Ryan Madson close, and make J.C. Romero (back from his supension) the setup man.  I think the best thing they can do right now is put Lidge on the DL, get him healthy, and bring him back at 100% for the second half of the season.
Category: MLB
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