While the Phillies offense has struggled for much of the season, the team still has the support of manager Ryne Sandberg.
Sandberg is rolling out virtually the same lineup that was no-hit by Josh Beckett on Sunday for tonight’s 5:05 p.m. game against the Colorado Rockies at Citizens Bank Park.
Carlos Ruiz, who got the day off Sunday, is back catching in place of Wil Nieves and batting seventh. Other than that the lineup is the same.
“I have confidence in the offense, the same guys to bounced back, that is what you do with a no-hitter and get the guys out there and bounce back.” Sandberg said before tonight’s game.
Sandberg won’t have much company when the subject of confidence in the offense is brought up. The Phillies have been shut out seven times. They have suffered six shutouts this month, their most in a calendar month since June of 1969, which was also six. (The Phillies finished 63-99 in that 1969 season).
They are 12th in the National League in runs with 183, 10th in average (.243), 13th in home runs (35) and 14th in pinch hitting average (.153).
Of course one could look at that pinch hitting stat and see that maybe Sandberg doesn’t feel he has better alternatives coming off the bench.
Either way, he isn’t bashing his offense publically and is hoping that they can find their way against Rockies RHP Jhoulys Chacin (0-3, 4.76).