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Friday, October 30, 2009
Lee won't pitch on short rest

Rotoworld on the Phillies' Game 4 starter:So, now let's see ...

Game 3: Pettitte vs. Hamels (advantage: Yankees)
Game 4: Sabathia vs. Blanton (Yankees)
Game 5: Burnett vs. Lee (Phillies)
Game 6: Pettitte vs. Martinez or Happ (Yankees)
Game 7: Sabathia vs. Hamels (Yankees)

This is no great revelation, I know. Objectively, Lee and Sabathia are essentially even, so in saving Lee for Game 5, he essentially trades two even matchups for one advantage (Game 5) and two disadvantages (Games 4 and 7). Maybe I'm missing some obscure aspect of game theory, but this decision obviously makes sense only if Manuel is convinced that Lee simply can't outpitch Sabathia on short rest. And in this case, I'm happy to assume that Manuel knows his pitcher better than I do.