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October 25, 2008

Charlie Manuel


Q. Just want to know who your DH is tonight?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I don't know. I didn't write one in. (Laughter).

Q. Who is at third base?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Feliz. Feliz is at third base, yes.

Q. Just because Moyer, you've been doing it all year, but with Moyer pitching you liked the defense there, I guess?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think I've only played Dobbs one time when Moyer pitched, and that was against the Mets. A lot of time when Hamels and Moyer are pitching, I play Feliz at third.

Q. Early in ballgames what in general is your philosophy about when you bring the infield in?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Early in the game, I usually will play back because I've got faith in our offense. And at the same time basically, that's the way I was kind of taught. I've seen it happen both ways. But the other night, I can answer that real quick for you, they had the middle of their lineup and guys that hit the ball real hard and they definitely can hit ground balls right by you, and there's no way I'm going to bring the infield in in the second inning like that.
Also, I only did it one time, in about the last four years, and the time I did it was against Arizona when they had a light-hitting catcher, and I did it in about the second or third rd inning, and he hit a single right field, dribbler, and they scored five runs and I haven't done it since.

Q. Who's batting second tonight? And how important is it for the top of the lineup to get going with Jimmy struggling?
CHARLIE MANUEL: We've got basically the same lineup, Werth is second, Victorino is in sixth and I'll stay with the same lineup. I thought about maybe switching Howard and Utley, but when I go back to it, if you go look at their production against left-handed pitchers, they're as high as anyone on our team. Jayson Werth has 16 homers, he's got good numbers against lefties. But Utley and Howard, they've got numbers that go against lefties, and I didn't see no reason why to bust them up.

Q. The time you spent in Japan, what did you learn there that you've incorporated into your managing philosophy?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think the biggest thing I've learned, I think it helped me as far as communication with players go, and the work ethic. I think since I've had health problems the physical work I can't do as much as I used to, but the work ethic definitely pays off. And I think those are the two biggest things that I learned.

Q. Regardless of what happens tonight, tomorrow night could be a make-or-break game, somebody is going to be up 2-1 with potential to go up 3-1. Has your confidence in Blanton increased since he got here?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Yeah, especially the last two times out. The game against Milwaukee, I felt like that was his best game that I seen him pitch, and he was very aggressive, and he was in the strike zone with all his pitches. He had command that day and he stayed with the game plan very good. And I liked everything he did that day. And he pitched a heck of a game for us.
And then the one against the Dodgers, you know, he could have been a little bit sharper, but he took us to a place in the game and gave us a chance to definitely win it. And, yeah, I think he did have some tendinitis or something, and about the last two or three games he's pitched his stuff has been better.

End of FastScripts

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