Papelbon sharp, mixes pitches in four-out save

Papelbon sharp, mixes pitches in four-out save

MILWAUKEE -- Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon looked fantastic pitching a four-out save Saturday.

He certainly seemed amped before, during and afterward.

Papelbon struck out three in 1 1/3 innings in a 4-3 victory over the Brewers at Miller Park. He threw 15 pitches (13 strikes). He also threw three sliders and one splitter to keep Brewers hitters guessing. A first-pitch slider for a strike to first baseman Corey Hart started the ninth and set up the rest of the inning because Milwaukee now had to worry about the slider and not just the fastball.

Papelbon has been throwing his slider a bit more recently for just that reason.

Asked why the Phillies chose to have Papelbon pitch a four-out save Saturday -- the club also had a four-out save situation Thursday but chose Josh Lindblom instead -- manager Charlie Manuel said it made sense because Papelbon had not pitched since Tuesday in Miami.

"He had rest," he said. "I liked where we were at in the game. I liked the matchup. Like I said the other night, Papelbon when we bring him in, we can't be getting him four-out situations and a big amount of pitches because that kills him for two or three days. How many pitches did he throw? 15? OK, yeah. He's fine for tomorrow.

"He was good. His stuff was good."