The Phillies have a rematch with the San Francisco Giants when they open a four-game series at AT&T Park on Thursday night.

Although they lost last year's National League Championship Series and a three-game series last week at Citizens Bank Park to San Francisco, Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay said Wednesday that the games that matter most are the ones that have the word playoff before them.

"Obviously you want to win games regardless of who you're playing," Halladay said. "But they did it last year when it mattered. I think you have to do it when it matters. You're really not going to get even. The end of the season is where it's at."

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel drew the ire of the Giants, especially pitcher Tim Lincecum, when he refused to recognize Lincecum and Matt Cain as great pitchers after the pair won consecutive games last week in Philadelphia.

Manuel's point was that those two pitchers have to prove their greatness over the long haul, the way Halladay has during his career.

"What's a great pitcher? A great pitcher is a guy who pitches quite a few years, and he has some 20-game seasons and stuff like that," Manuel said.

"Lincecum and Cain and their two lefties [Jonathan] Sanchez and [Madison] Bumgarner, they're good pitchers. They're very good pitchers. I said our team can hit them. Their stuff is not so overpowering and great that we can't hit them. That's what I meant, but it doesn't matter. Whatever [Lincecum] thinks - good."

- Bob Brookover