By Joseph Santoliquito


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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Jake Arrieta wore the bug-eyed look of a man possessed Sunday afternoon in San Francisco. The Phillies’ right-handed starter had a rough outing, but he had an even rougher time seeing the Phillies get smacked around 6-1, dropping their third-straight game to the Giants.

Arrieta is a Cy Young winner. He’s a World Series winner. He’s knows what it takes to win, and sometimes it requires a little rough love, which he amply supplied Sunday, when lashed out, “Overall it’s just a really horse[bleep] series. Really bad. Really bad.

PHILADELPHIA, PA – APRIL 19: Jake Arrieta #49 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch in the top of the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citizens Bank Park on April 19, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

“We need to have an accountability check,” Arrieta said. “This is a key moment in our season. We had a pretty good April and a pretty good May. June isn’t starting out so well.

“We’re the worst in the league with shifts. So we need to change that,” Arrieta said. “Copy the best. I don’t know. That’s not my job. Use your eyes make and adjustment and be better. We need some accountability all the way around. Everybody, top to bottom.

“We’re the worst in the league with shifts. So we need to change that,” Arrieta said. “Copy the best. I don’t know. That’s not my job. Use your eyes make and adjustment and be better. We need some accountability all the way around. Everybody, top to bottom.”

Arrieta wore the look of a madman when he said it, but that’s what the drive to winning is all about. Now what the Phillies will do with Arrieta’s words and warning will be interesting to see.

At least out front, Phils’ manager Gabe Kapler appeared on board with Arrieta’s transparency.

“He cares a lot about winning and I think this series [ticked] him off. It [ticked] me off, too. It was not our best series,” Kapler said about Arrieta. “He and I are going to spend some time talking about how we position defenders behind him. We are flexible and reasonable as it relates to the way we position defenders and we will be responsive to the optimal positioning based on our spray charts and based on where guys hit the ball and we’ll also be responsive to our players, their needs and the best way to position defenders behind them individually so that they’re comfortable and they make their pitches.

“Jake and I will discuss that internally. We’re probably not going to discuss how exactly that’s going to go down right away, but it’s certainly something that he and I will address together. A ton of respect for his leadership characteristics, what he brings to that clubhouse. I know why he responded the way he did and we talked it through like men. And we will continue to do that.”

Maybe with a little jolt of Arrieta tough love.