Lidge’s timetable close to All-Star Break

Manager Charlie Manuel said that closer Brad Lidge could be out as late as the middle of July.

“I’m probably looking at maybe All-Star break, or… just before that,” Manuel said.

Original reports from Ruben Amaro, Jr. suggested that Lidge would be out three-to-six week with a right posterior rotator cuff strain.

The Phillies bull pen hasn’t been strained yet with out their closer. Last night’s 10-7 win over New York was the first save opportunity for Jose Contreras, Lidge’s temporary replacement. In two appearances, Contreras has allowed only two hits and a walk without surrendering a run.

In fact, in yesterday’s game, the pen had to pitch 4.2 innings of relief to stop the bleeding started by starter Joe Blanton.

Antonio Bastardo looked the most impressive, allowing only a hit and striking out two in 1.2 innings of work. The runs given up during his tenure were inherited from guys Blanton left on.

J.C. Romero, Ryan Madson and Contreras allowed only one hit and struck out two to preserve the win for the Phils. It was a joint performance like that, that builds character within a bull pen that’s going to be questioned all season.


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