PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Yesterday, after a second straight postseason full of offensive struggles, Phillies’ general manager Ruben Amaro spoke about the need for Phillies hitters to change their approach at the plate (see related story).

Today, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel gave his thoughts on the team’s hitting, saying that overall he agrees that improvement is needed.

“I think what Ruben means, too, is the fact that he would like to see us grind out more at-bats and learn how to work the count better and be plate disciplined,” Manuel told reporters.  “All those things he talked about, I talk about that anyway, and so does (hitting coach Greg Gross).”

What does Manuel see his team doing wrong at the plate?

“You watch some of our hitters, we’ll take a fastball right down the middle.  Then some guy will throw us a bad ball, the second pitch will be a breaking ball, down, and we’ll just kind of roll over it or swing and miss it or something like that,” he says.  “That’s not good hitting.  We talk about that all the time — I touch base on that every day.”

While the team did win 102 games during the regular season, Manuel says the way the playoffs ended obviously left a bad taste in everyone’s mouth.

“With the talent assembled on our team, (the public’s) expectation was that we had to win a World Series.  Didn’t happen.  So that’s kind of how I look at it and I’m sorry for that.”

As for 2012?

“You can put expectations on it all you want to, but it’s the expectations (our players) put on themselves and how we look at things.  And I guarantee you right now, when we go to spring training, our roster isn’t filled or nothing like that, but we will be talking about winning the World Series.  That will be our goal: to win a World Series.”

Reported by Matt Leon, KYW Newsradio 1060

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