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(Originally published at IIATMS/TYA)
The main talking point from last night's game, besides the obvious one of how awesome a win it was, was Joe's decision to go to the hook quickly with Phil Hughes in the 6th inning. With 2 outs, a runner on 1st, a 1-run lead, and Hughes at only 80 pitches, Joe had seen enough and went to Boone Logan to face lefty-hitting Mitch Moreland. Moreland hit the second pitch he saw from Logan for a 2-run homer to deep center and the lead was blown, setting up the eventual 9th inning dramatics.
Personally, I think Joe made a bad call yanking Hughes and going to Logan when he did. To me it was a classic case of the matchup binder winning out over what was happening on the field, and I thought the situation on the field gave Hughes (and Joe) enough wiggle room to allow him to face Moreland and take one more shot at ending an inning that should have already been over. At the same time, I can understand why Joe made the move. Hughes had given up 2 consecutive hits on balls up in the zone, he hadn't been all that sharp, and if Hughes gives up one more hit to blow the lead everybody is going to be killing Joe today for not going to the 'pen. It was a lose-lose situation for him either way and unfortunately the decision he made turned out to be the wrong one.