Halladay Looks Good Again
The two busses that carried the Phillies from Bright House Field in Clearwater to Champion Stadium in Lake Buena Vista left at 1:30 p.m. today.
Roy Halladay was not on board. He could not wait for the busses to make the 90-minute trek. He wanted to get to the ballpark earlier, so he drove himself and arrived at 2:15 p.m. instead.
“I just can’t sit at home on days I pitch,” he said during a 7-4 victory over the Braves. “I get fidgety. My wife can’t stand me, so she kicks me out. I try to get here a little earlier just to meander for awhile.”
Halladay, who will spend that time during the season studying a game plan, allowed three hits and struck out five in three scoreless innings against Atlanta. In two Grapefruit League starts, Halladay has allowed five hits and struck out eight in five scoreless innings. Halladay struck out the side in the first inning, including a nice curveball to get Brian McCann to end the inning. He retired the side in order in the third, striking out Nate McLouth and Martin Prado each for the second time.
“I felt like it got better,” Halladay said. “The last inning I felt like the command was better.”
Halladay threw 51 pitches, 33 for strikes. He allowed singles to Chipper Jones and Troy Glaus in the first inning, which left him unsatisfied. Yes, Halladay didn’t think he threw particularly well the first two innings – and he still looked good, catcher Brian Schneider remarked.
Braves manager Bobby Cox marveled at the two front-door cutters that got Prado.
“He can do it with every pitch,” Cox said. “There’s a guy that can throw 96 (mph) if he wants to. But he throws 89-91 and knows right where it’s going.”