Thursday, November 26, 2015

Game 3: The quest for runs

PITTSBURGH — And on the third game, Charlie Manuel sacrificed his defense for offense.

Game 3: The quest for runs

(Michael Bryant/Staff Photographer)
(Michael Bryant/Staff Photographer)

PITTSBURGH — And on the third game, Charlie Manuel sacrificed his defense for offense.

The manager will start Jim Thome and Juan Pierre for the first time Sunday as the Phillies attempt to win this series against the Pirates. He'll also put Ty Wigginton at third base.

His lineup:

1. Juan Pierre 7
2. Shane Victorino 8
3. Jimmy Rollins 6
4. Hunter Pence 9
5. Jim Thome 3
6. Ty Wigginton 5
7. Freddy Galvis 4
8. Brian Schneider 2
9. Vance Worley 1

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Thome will play a major-league game at first base for the first time in 1,761 days. He showed he could handle the position on a limited basis during spring training, but Thome was rarely challenged. No one attempted to bunt up the first-base line. Expect one of the many speedy Pirates to try that.

He also did not play more than six innings at first during Grapefruit League play. So also expect a defensive replacement in the later innings.

Worley makes his first start of the season behind the worst defense the Phillies have used yet. If anything, this should be interesting.

Bonus: Thome last played first base for the Phillies on June 30, 2005. The lineup on that day is cringe-worthy:

1. Kenny Lofton 8
2. Endy Chavez 7
3. Bobby Abreu 9
4. Jim Thome 3
5. Jimmy Rollins 6
6. Chase Utley 4
7. Tomas Perez 5
8. Todd Pratt 2
9. Jon Lieber 1

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