Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins was benched for this afternoon's game vs. the Mets because he was late arriving.

Rollins got to Shea Stadium about an hour before the 12:10 p.m. game, and then met with manager Charlie Manuel. He sat and watched his mates muster just seven hits against starter Oliver Perez and a couple of relievers in a 3-1 loss.

Rollins, who was benched earlier in the season for failing to run out a fly ball, said he disagreed with the decision this time around.

"We're not going to agree on this one," Rollins said. "I agreed with him last time but we're not going to agree on this one. I think he understood that and I understood it. But he's the manager, and he has to set a precendent and for certain players you are expected and held up to higher rules, and that's fine, that's part of it."

Rollins said he kept his normal routine, leaving the hotel in his own car 10 minutes after the second team bus departed for Shea Stadium.

"It's the same thing I do all the time," Rollins said. "Usually leave about 10 minutes after the bus when I drive myself. But you can't change lights and stuff."

Rollins pinch-hit in the ninth and grounded into a fielder's choice to end the game.

The change was announced 15 minutes before the scheduled start of the series finale against the Mets, with Eric Bruntlett replacing Rollins in the leadoff spot.

Rollins entered the game batting .270 and had a 10-game hitting streak. The loss amounted to another series loss for the Phillies, who fell out of first place.