What a game last night! When the Phillies came back twice I thought for sure they were going to pull it out. Especially after the Giants left the bases loaded with one out. It had the makings of a Phillies win.

You knew the game was a must win for the Phillies when you saw Roy Oswalt warming up in the top of the ninth. I’m not going to say Manuel was nuts for doing so, but you had to go with Lidge. Of course you say that now after the fact, but you need to know how your pitcher works right out of the gate – and this burned the Phillies.

All the phenomenal starting pitchers in these two series need at least one inning to settle into their rhythm, sometimes two, and yet Oswalt comes into a tied game. He’s not a closer! That was Charlie Manuel’s second mistake. His first one was listening to his pitching coach.

During Manuel’s press conference, a reporter asked why he brought Oswalt in. He said it was brought up to him, thought it was a good idea and chose to put him in the game. He also added that If they wanted more detail, they had to ask pitching coach Dubee. Now, I’m not saying he blamed Dubee, but he didn’t exactly go the manager route and just say it was his call. He brought up Dubee a couple more times and then he moved on. Am I looking too deep into it? Maybe, but I can’t be for sure, nor anyone else.

The reality is that the Giants have a commanding 3 – 1 lead over the Phils and tonight makes for some very, very good baseball. If I had to pick a winner, I’d be lying if I said the Giants. Halladay is going to bring it on even nastier tonight, but I can’t write off Lincecum. If he gives us another 14 strikeout performance, champagne might pouring tonight in San Francisco.