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Phillies' Rollins apologizes for not hustling

The SportsXchange

Jimmy Rollins didn't star Friday night in the Philadelphia Phillies' dramatic 8-5 comeback win over the Braves in 10 innings at Turner Field. Erik Kratz hit a game-tying home run -- and held onto a ball in a vicious collision with Chipper Jones -- while John Mayberry Jr. slugged the go-ahead three-run home run in the 10th inning.

But Rollins being in the lineup at all was the story in Atlanta.

Just a day earlier, in a matinee against the New York Mets at Citizens Bank Park, Rollins was pulled from the game after not running out an infield pop fly. The incident came two weeks to the day that Rollins was called into manager Charlie Manuel's office for not hustling in a game at Miami.

Upon his arrival to Turner Field on Friday, Rollins went directly into Manuel's office and exited 10 minutes later smiling.

"He walked in there and manned up," Manuel said. "He said he was wrong and apologized to me."

Rollins has long been criticized in Philadelphia for not hustling all the time. Friday, he admitted he's guilty of not running hard all the time. And he knows he should.

"You get a hit, you don't think about hustle. You just do it," Rollins said. "It goes the same when you make an out. You don't think about hustle. You just do it. You just go. You don't think about, well, I hit this ball, now I need to run this hard. It just doesn't happen that way."

But Rollins has made a habit out of not running hard all the time, even if he was forthright in his apologies. Is he concerned he'll be remembered in Philadelphia, a town that puts hustle as high as any attribute, as a player who didn't go 100 percent all the time rather than as a player who won an MVP and helped led the Phillies to a World Series title?

"No, not really," Rollins said. "They're isolated incidents. From maybe my third year it was already something. Actually, my first year. Let's be real. It was always something. That's the decision people will make."
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