Last night Charlie Manuel started Jayson Werth in center field and Shane Victorino in right field. It was going fine until the ninth inning, when Werth misplayed a fly ball by Brian McCann for a double. One run scored. Though the Phils hung on to win, the play could’ve cost them the game.
Manuel’s reason for putting Werth in center field was merely that he wanted to:
“I want Werth to play center field every now and then. I said before that Werth will play some in center field. I said it in the winter. I said it in the spring. I said it right before Victorino came back [from the disabled list]. That way, we’ve got two guys. If you notice during the season, I usually give [Victorino] a rest. I give him a blow every now and then. And when I give him a rest, Werth will be the guy to go to center field.”
Yeah, Charlie, when you give Vic a rest. But last night Vic was starting. Victorino has a better arm, more range and is quicker than Werth. There was no reason not to start Vic in center field if both were playing. If Victorino is on the bench, that’s fine, but if there’s anything Shane has done well this season it’s play his position. He needs to be out there in center field if he’s playing.
If there’s any reason the team is hiding it could be they want to expose Werth as trade bait who can play all outfield positions. But that’s a fairly ridiculous thought.