1. Glove love
Utility infielder Pete Orr made two outstanding defensive plays Thursday afternoon subbing for Chase Utley. First, he catapulted into the air and snagged a second-inning looper in the upper webbing of his glove. Then, in the fourth, Orr robbed Greg Dobbs of a base hit. Unfortunately, he didn’t make much of an impact at the plate, going 0-for-3.
2. Looking glass
Kyle Kendrick was cruising — he had a no-hitter through four – but Charlie Manuel pulled him in the fifth, after allowing just two hits and one run on 78 pitches. Why? Well, with a playoff spot clinched the Phils skipper didn’t want to risk injury. Plus, Manuel wanted to get another hard look at his bullpen since he’ll need to whittle down his roster in the coming weeks.
3. It’s an arms race
Joe Blanton is back and gunning for a spot. But the ’pen is packed at long reliever, with Kendrick and Vance Worley. Throw in short relievers Brad Lidge, Michael Stutes, David Herndon, Ryan Madson, Antonio Bastardo, and the inn is pretty full. Yesterday, Stutes (two hits, walk) and Bastardo (one hit, walk) both looked shaky, while Lidge got them out of an eighth-inning jam.