A week ago, Phillies closer Brad Lidge conceded that his rotator cuff tear would probably keep him out for a few months. On Wednesday, manager Charlie Manuel only confirmed the timetable in an interview on MLB Network Radio. Said Manuel:
"I'm probably looking at maybe All-Star break, or... just before that," Manuel told the station.
Lidge said that he's looking to get back for the second half, and Manuel's in agreement. The big hope right now is that Lidge will have built his arm strength and stamina up to the point that, by then, he can hit the ground running and make an immediate impact.
In the meantime, Jose Contreras will continue to serve as the team's closer. Being without Lidge makes the bullpen weaker, obviously, but on Wednesday night four relievers were able to combine for more than four shutout innings in a big, wild game against the Mets, so it's not as if the Phillies are in a desperate position right now.