Originally featured on Phillies Nation.
On Wednesday night, Brad Lidge blew his league leading, eleventh save of the year. Should Brad Lidge continue to close? Most of us can agree that the answer is no. The question remains: who should fill his role? There is no answer; at least I don't have one.
Lidge can not continue to close games, but he will. Charlie insists on "sticking to his guy." Many believe that Lidge will be left off the postseason roster, but I do not see it happening. He deserves to be, but if Manuel is letting him close this late in the season, I doubt Lidge will be excluded during the playoffs.
Ryan Madson has struggled in the closer's role, blowing six saves. He was not much better when he filled in for Lidge. He is like LaTroy Hawkins. He can't close, but is a decent set-up man.
Brett Myers is hurt, as well as J.C Romero and Chan Ho Park. The Phillies don't envision Tyler Walker, Chad Durbin or Sergio Escalona as closers.
Phillies Nation mentioned that J.A Happ could close. It would be worth a shot and it is a strong possibility. At this point, anybody is better than Lidge, but no thank you. I think it could work out for the short term, but not for the long term. He doesn't have a go-to strikeout pitch like Lidge's slider (when it's good). I was never a fan of Happ relieving from the beginning. I'd rather get 6+ scoreless innings from Happ than one.
The closing situation is a big issue. It will be impossible for the Phillies to go deep into the postseason with this reoccurring nightmare. The bullpen is a problem, but answers are scarce.