Charlie still cagey on DH

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel talks to second baseman Chase Utley during today's workout. (Michael Perez / Staff Photographer)

Phils manager Charlie Manuel has one card left to play before Game 1 of the World Series -- the identity of his designated hitter against Rays lefthander Scott Kazmir.

And Charlie isn't showing that card yet.

"I haven't decided on the lineup until tomorrow," Manuel said at his press conference Tuesday afternoon.

Everybody knows the discussion, about how the Phils really don't have a great righthanded bat on the bench right now -- not with the way Chris Coste struggled down the stretch, not with the way So Taguchi has struggled all season. Besides, if you use Coste, your backup catcher, as DH, it does run a risk if starter Carlos Ruiz were to get hurt.

So, the question is, would Manuel consider one of his lefthanders off of the bench as DH? Or would he consider moving left fielder Pat Burrell to DH and use, say,  Eric Bruntlett in left?

"I'll be more inclined definitely to probably throw a right-handed hitter in there," Manuel said.


Who should be the Phillies' DH in Game 1?

So, has he decided and just isn't telling?

"It doesn't matter," he said. "...I might look and change it right at the last moment. You never know. Seriously."

The writing of this post was interrupted by a gentleman in a uniform and his bomb-sniffing dog, who cleared everybody out of the press work room at Tropicana Field and then went about the business of sniffing every briefcase and laptop in the place.

No bombs were found, or Pulitzers.

Driving over the causeway from Tampa to Clearwater, there is an official-looking road sign that reads, simply, "Go  Rays." About a hundred yards down, a sign of identical size and design reads,  "Go Phillies."

This is known as bet-hedging in the town the Phillies have called their spring training home for decades.

In the world of see-ball/hit-ball, there isn't a lot of sign-hanging and slogan-making in major-league baseball clubhouses. But in the Rays' clubhouse, there are three signs hanging prominently. They do not quote Yogi Berra, either.

"Integrity has no need of rules"
Albert Camus

"Rules cannot take the place of character."
Alan Greenspan

"Discipline yourself so no one else has to."
John Wooden