Now Commenting On:

{"content":["all-star_game" ] }

Howard as DH in Manuel's NL lineup

Howard as DH in Manuel's NL lineup

ANAHEIM -- Phillies manager Charlie Manuel heard plenty of jokes on Monday about the National League's futility against the American League.

He would like to end those jokes on Tuesday with an NL victory in the All-Star Game at Angel Stadium.

"I like to win every day," Manuel said. "To win the All-Star Game, it would be absolutely great. I want to win for the National League. Whether we're the representation for the National League in the World Series or not, I still would like to put that in line for our league.

"I think home-field advantage definitely is important. Yeah, I'd love to win it. I love to win every day."

Manuel spent almost the entire flight from Philadelphia to Anaheim on Sunday making out his lineup. He hopes this lineup helps the NL win its first All-Star Game since 1996.

Honorary NL president Bill Giles, who knows Manuel well as the Phillies' chairman, put a little pressure on Manuel before he announced Colorado Rockies right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez as his starting pitcher and before he unveiled his lineup. Giles said that because this is Manuel's second consecutive time managing the NL, it's his job to end that "stupid American League jinx."

"Charlie, your job's on the line," Giles joked.

Jimenez will help; he is a remarkable 15-1 with a 2.20 ERA. Manuel said he also considered Florida Marlins right-hander Josh Johnson, who is 9-3 with a 1.70 ERA, but Manuel said Jimenez has been a top pitcher in the NL for years and deserved the honor.

"He's what I call a horse," Manuel said.

Manuel had plenty of choices as his designated hitter, but he chose Howard. Manuel is certainly familiar with Howard, who was the 2006 NL MVP and 2005 NL Rookie of the Year under Manuel's watch in Philadelphia. But Howard is also tied for the NL lead with 65 RBIs and seventh in the league with 17 home runs.

"I chose Ryan because I thought he fit," Manuel said of Howard. "We want to jump out of the gate. At the same time we have some pieces on our roster that we'll get into some serious baseball that last four innings of the game."

Manuel chose Ethier as his center fielder, despite the fact Ethier has never played center field. But Manuel pointed out that he had little choice. Manuel also has Braun, a left fielder, and Hart, a right fielder, in his starting lineup, leaving him without a true center fielder.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"content":["all-star_game" ] }
{"content":["all-star_game" ] }
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español