October 6 Philadelphia Inquirer:
“For a short series with an extra off day and three surefire aces, the Phillies decided that carrying an extra pitcher was not prudent. Actually, they decided that carrying two extra pitchers was too many.
Instead, after carrying 12 pitchers for most of the season, the Phillies will take just 10 into their National League division series matchup with the Cincinnati Reds. That means Kyle Kendrick, Danys Baez, and David Herndon, all of whom spent the entire season on the roster, will not be active for the first round of the playoffs.
It also means that Greg Dobbs and Domonic Brown have made the roster in two very roundabout ways.
For Dobbs, it serves as vindication on some level. The Phillies’ former top pinch-hitter was designated for assignment twice this season, cleared waivers both times, and played 16 games in the minors.
“I had to trust my talent,” Dobbs said.
Dobbs hit .196 for the season and was 5 for 22 in September with one pinch-hit home run. In the last two seasons combined, Dobbs is batting .146 as a pinch-hitter after hitting a spectacular .355 in 2008.
But Dobbs provides extra infield insurance in case of injury to one or more of the starters. Like backup shortstop Wilson Valdez, he can fill in at third, and Dobbs can also play first.
For Brown, it’s likely just the start of something big. The rookie outfielder was named Baseball America’s top prospect at midseason, but since Aug. 12 he has started just four games.
The postseason will offer some quality experience for Brown, even if he doesn’t see much time on the field. He is expected to play a bigger role in 2011.
“What can I say? It’s been a great ride this year,” Brown said. “Everything is going real fast, but it’s great. This is what you work for, to get in the postseason.”
Brown was hampered by a strained right quadriceps for much of September. But in the final week of the season he started two games and stole a base, showing that he was healthy.
“I thought maybe I was going to get sent down to Clearwater or just travel with the team,” Brown said. “I really didn’t know. I got in there and made some good impressions. That last week, I had some good at-bats.”
With Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt, and Cole Hamels starting all five of the possible games in the division series, the Phillies decided 10 pitchers would be enough. Lefthander Antonio Bastardo made the roster as a second option to J.C. Romero, who, despite leaving Sunday’s game with back problems, is healthy, manager Charlie Manuel said.
Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto, the likely MVP of the National League, has an OPS .252 points lower against lefthanders. Jay Bruce, the other lefthanded slugger in the Reds’ lineup, has similar numbers against both lefties and righties.”
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