MIAMI - Pat Burrell was not happy with manager Charlie Manuel's decision to remove him late in yesterday's 11-inning loss to the Florida Marlins.
"I'm upset, absolutely," Burrell said. "I'm upset, and I have been for a long time. It's not personal. I don't want to ever come out of close games."
Manuel routinely replaces his leftfielder with a speedier defender when the Phillies have leads late in games.
Yesterday, Burrell was replaced by Eric Bruntlett in the bottom of the eighth with the Phils ahead, 2-1. Cole Hamels gave up a game-tying home run in the inning.
Burrell had been 5 for 12 with two doubles and two home runs in the series. His would-be spot in the lineup came up in the top of the 11th, and Bruntlett hit a soft leadoff pop-up to second, dropping him to .231 on the season.
Burrell said there was no guarantee he would have gotten a hit if he had stayed in. For the season, he is hitting .280 with 25 homers, third-most in the National League.
Manuel defended his removal of Burrell.
"Yes, I thought about leaving him in," he said. "If it was the seventh, I would have left him in. It was the eighth inning, and we were six outs away [from a win]. I took him out because Bruntlett covers more ground - that's why. Six outs to go with a one-run lead, that's the decision I made."
Burrell did not raise his voice or show much emotion as he voiced his displeasure with Manuel's strategy.
"In that situation, we're trying to put more speed out there, so I can't question what the manager is trying to do. He's got confidence in all his guys," Burrell said. "But I can't lie and say I'm not frustrated by it, especially when it's close like that in a low-scoring game. He knows that. We've discussed it.
"Do I wish it was different? Absolutely. I don't know any other way to say that. A lot of games I've come out, it's never an issue, but when it does come back to bite us, it becomes more of a focus."
Burrell realizes he is not a fleet runner, and there are times when he has no qualms about coming out of a game.
"If it's a tie game and I get on base and you run for me, I think that's a good time," he said.
As Burrell headed out of the clubhouse, he smiled and offered up a possible solution to his early-exit frustration.
"Maybe I've got to improve my 60 times," he said.