Phillies die-hards know how the story ends
PHILADELPHIA -- Charlie Manuel is salty. His right fielder grabs his calf running down the first-base line, the same calf that landed him on the disabled list. When the player, Shane Victorino, is surprised he's not in the lineup the next day, he gives his manager a little nudge, as they say, right under the bus."I don't know why I'm not playing," he says. "I'm fine." Another player, mercury-quick reserve outfielder Michael Bourn has been out for weeks, yet upon his return, Manuel did not use him in a key situation, and thus the walls once more are closing in on the Philadelphia Phillies. "I saw where he said when he turns the bases that his ankle hurts him," Manuel said of Bourn. "If you were the manager, what would you think?" Questions are no longer innocent in this town, if ever they were -- and Manuel's skeptical eyes narrow to a mean little slit when he catches even a whiff of insinuation that the Phillies are once again too far from shore to swim home. In between complete sentences, Manuel waves the white flag of language, muttering despairing fragments such as "Write whatever you want" and "I don't care" in between complete sentences. Jim Salisbury, the veteran Phillies writer for The Philadelphia Inquirer, tosses a little levity at the manager. "Charlie, you seem unusually feisty today." "That's right. I'm feisty," Manuel said. "I'm trying to win a ballgame."
There's a difference between being nervous and being scared. Nervous can be butterflies. It can be adrenaline. Scared is in a different area. It means you're scared to get it done.
--Phillies manager Charlie Manuel