Game 19: Riding Ibanez and more Oswalt praise

Raul Ibanez has struggled against left-handed pitching this season. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)

SAN DIEGO -- The Phillies' lineup in Game 19 looks the same as it has eight previous times. That means Raul Ibanez, who carries a 4 for 29 and a .577 OPS into the game will play against a lefthander.

Clayton Richard starts for the Padres and Charlie Manuel said he contemplated putting John Mayberry Jr. in left. But then he decided not to.

"He's going to get to play," Manuel said. "There's some lefties that are going to face us on this trip."

One will be on Sunday, when San Diego calls up Wade LeBlanc to make the start opposite Roy Halladay in the final game of the series. The Phillies will also see lefthander Joe Saunders in Arizona.

"Ibanez, you do have to play him," Manuel said. "There comes a time when giving him a break doesn't hurt him. I rested him the other day. I have to stay with him for a while."

For what it's worth, Ibanez had one of his better swings in the fifth inning against a lefthander (Corey Luebke) on Thursday night. It was a long fly out to center.

He also was working extensively with hitting coach Greg Gross on his swing before today's game.


Pitching coach Rich Dubee had high praise for Roy Oswalt's outing.

"First of it all, it was a tough travel day," Dubee said. "Two, I don't think he's 100 percent yet. There's some after effect on the side.

"I thought it was a gritty effort, really."


Shane Victorino will hold a book signing 10 a.m. on May 7 at the Majestic Clubhouse Store in Citizens Bank Park. The book is Shane Victorino: The Flyin’ Hawaiian, written by Alan Maimon.


The lineup as hometown boy (and goateed) Cole Hamels starts...

1. Shane Victorino 8
2. Placido Polanco 5
3. Jimmy Rollins 6
4. Ryan Howard 3
5. Ben Francisco 9
6. Raul Ibanez 7
7. Carlos Ruiz
8. Wilson Valdez 4
9. Cole Hamels 1

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