At Baseball Daily Digest, I suggest that the Phillies should put Brad Lidge on the disabled list and let Ryan Madson close games in the meantime.
Counting tonight’s appearance in Washington, Madson has thrown 11 and two-thirds consecutive scoreless innings. In that span, he’s struck out ten, walked four, and allowed just seven hits, only one of which has gone for extra bases. Last season, mostly setting up for Lidge, he had a 3.05 ERA in 82 and two-thirds innings, striking out 67 and walking only 23.
The lucky-to-be-above-.500 Phillies don’t have the luxury of a multi-game lead in the division where they can play chicken by trotting out a dysfunctional reliever to pitch one of the most crucial innings of each game. Were it not for a never-say-die offense, the Phillies would be playing checkers with the Nationals at the bottom of the division, where the .300 winning percentages hang out.