Best record be damned, Phils need to get better

The Phillies own the best record in baseball. Their 64 wins through 100 games is the second-best mark in franchise history. The Phils have won nine straight series, and haven’t lost back-to-back games since June 4.

Despite all that good karma around Citizens Bank Park, Charlie Manuel sees room for improvement.

“I see places where we can improve, and as long as I see those, I’m always going to talk to [GM] Ruben [Amaro, Jr.] about those things — and that’s between us,” the Phillies skipper said yesterday. “I feel like we need to get better. I want to get better.”

Speculation over what the Phillies covet is at an all-time high. Is it a right-handed bat, in the form of Carlos Beltran or Hunter Pence? Or maybe it’s another bullpen arm, say Mike Adams or Heath Bell?

“I’ll play with what we got but, at the same time, I think our organization, in my communication with them, I think we’re always looking to get better,” Manuel said.

Manuel said he would never call out one of his players in public. But he dropped many not-so-subtle hints that the offense needs to crank it up. Otherwise, changes will be made.

“We got guys that are hitting .220, .230, .240, from a hitting standpoint, that’s not good,” Manuel said. “That’s not good, I don’t care what anybody says. That ain’t good.”

That’s a message echoed up and down his lineup. From supersub Michael Martinez to ace Roy Halladay, no one is satisfied.

“I think there’s always room for improvement,” Halladay said. “Unless you’re undefeated and you’re 10-running everybody, there’s definitely a long ways to go.”