Phillies lean to the left

Updated: October 10, 2009, 6:37 PM ET
By Jayson Stark
DENVER -- Charlie Manuel may not be a big fan of leftovers, the Left Bank or the Left Coast. But the Phillies' manager is obviously a man who thinks left-handers are baseball's greatest invention since the fungo bat.

Once the temperatures started sinking, glop started dropping out of the Colorado sky and Game 3 of the Phillies' National League Division Series against the Rockies got wintered out Saturday, Manuel jumped at the chance to start a third straight left-hander -- J.A. Happ -- in this NLDS.

J.A. Happ


And there will be more where that came from.

If this series goes five games, the Phillies will become the first team in the live-ball era to start a left-handed pitcher in every game of a postseason series this long. It was Cliff Lee in Game 1 and Cole Hamels in Game 2. And it will be Lee and Hamels following Happ in Games 4 and 5, weather and childbirths permitting.

So how rare is this -- a team starting left-handers every single day in October? I rampaged through baseball-reference.com's fabulous Play Index on Saturday to find out. And here's what I discovered: