ATLANTA — Joe Savery will not pitch in the postseason for the Phillies, at least barring an injury. Ruben Amaro Jr. met with the lefthander before Monday's game and told Savery his next stop is Clearwater, Fla., to stay fresh at Instructional League just in case of an October emergency.
So Savery knows what's at stake. The Phillies went much of 2011 with one lefthander in the bullpen. It's not ridiculous to think a 25-year-old who began the season as a first baseman in single A could be a lefthanded option in the bullpen come 2012.
A night like Monday is what Charlie Manuel and Rich Dubee will remember when spring training arrives in February. With a one-run lead and perennial All-Star catcher Brian McCann leading off the seventh, Manuel called for Savery.
McCann, a lefty, was his one batter. He threw two pitches. McCann bounced out to second.
"It was awesome," Savery said.
Savery, figuring that McCann wouldn't swing at the first pitch, threw a slider over the plate. He took it.
"Luckily," Savery said.
Next came the 92 m.p.h. fastball and an easy out. Then Manuel emerged with the hook.
Savery has faced six batters in his brief and unexpected major-league trial. He has retired five of them. Both lefties he's faced have recorded outs.
"It was my goal to give some of these guys a break," Savery said. "Then, I can try to make myself a factor for next year. I'm not taking any of these outings for granted. They can only go by what they see. So I'm trying to do my best."
So far, he's merited a closer look later.
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