Halladay: I Have Time to Get Ready

Roy HalladayRoy Halladay is 10 pounds lighter, but he said he feels better.

He lasted just one inning in Sunday’s Grapefruit League start against the Orioles at Bright House Field because of a stomach virus. That followed serious struggles in 2 2/3 innings March 12, which he attributed to lethargy because of a more rigorous workout program and throwing two bullpen sessions in between starts.

It has been an interesting spring for Halladay, who has been trying to prove he can bounce back from a disappointing 2012.

“I feel like I’m going in the right direction,” he said before today’s game against the Yankees. “Just bad timing for a setback.”

Halladay, whose velocity has been in the 85-88 range in his last three starts, said he hopes to throw a bullpen session tomorrow and pitch Saturday against the Orioles in Sarasota. He said he thinks he can get enough work in his final two Spring Training starts to be ready for the season. He is scheduled to pitch the second game of the season April 3 in Atlanta.

“From today on, if I continue to get stronger and stronger each day I’ll be fine,” he said. “If I can go out and throw 75 pitches my next start … I think 75 is realistic. The time after that if I get to 90 or maybe a couple over 90 then it’s easy to go 105 to 110 or whatever. I haven’t been on any teams where the first start of the season they let you go over 100 pitches. If I can get to 90 by the end of spring, I feel like I can throw 100-105.”

Halladay has maintained he is otherwise healthy, but has been having problems mostly with his mechanics.

He said he could not tell if he improved in that area Sunday, although others told him they saw improvement.

“My bullpens have felt really good, and I felt good when I first started throwing in the bullpen,” he said. “Throwing today felt good. The arm slot and the stuff we are working on I think is there.”

Halladay said if he is not strong enough to throw a bullpen Wednesday, the possibility exists he could be pushed back a day or two at the beginning of the season. In one scenario, right-hander Kyle Kendrick could start the second game of the season and Halladay could start the home opener against the Royals at Citizens Bank Park on April 6.

“I’m sure there are a lot of options, but I think all of it is going to depend on day-to-day,” Halladay said. “If I come in tomorrow and feel weak and don’t feel like I can throw a bullpen, that’s going to change things. But I think day-to-day is what’s most important. The plan for me would be to do what we said, throw a bullpen, pitch, then pitch one more time before the end of spring and go into the season. But if it doesn’t go exactly that way, I’m sure there are other ways to look at it.

“I feel like it’s there. I feel like I’ve made the strides that I need to make but just really haven’t got to test it. That was really kind of the most disappointing thing about it. I told Ruben (Amaro Jr.) that night, as sick as I felt on the mound, I almost feel worse because I didn’t get to see the results that I wanted to see. I guess you just have to be patient and let it do its thing. There are things that you can control, and you worry about that. I’m going to continue to worry about what I can control and do as much as I can to be as effective and as good as I can be on Opening Day.”

8 Comments

Doc should wait to pitch the home opener. Kendrick owns the Braves.

Let’s hope the good Doctor is just feeling the affects of his virus. Agree he should wait to pitch the home opener. That’s almost as prestigious as being the opening day pitcher.

I agree Phan52, letting Kendrick’s face the Bravos isn’t the worst thing by far. And he looked very good today.

Doc should begin the season at #3, behind Cole and Cliff. I really don’t see him being effective as he was in 2010 and 2011 ever again. Father Time is undefeated.

Halladay should be number 2 in the rotation but only to split up the lefties. Lee and Hamels are probably better pitches at this point though.

Since this is the first spring training that Doc has come entered after his adjusted off-season regiment, I guess we’ll have to trust him when he says he’ll be ready to pitch.

What we don’t know is whether or not the less throwing and the change in weight training has effected the strength of his pitching arm and therefore the speed of his fastball. I think it’s strange that no one seems to be saying that Doc’ fastball will return to 92-94 mph. Instead, they are saying that the speed of his fastball is not worrying them. Let’s just hope that Doc made the right decisions about his off-season workout regiment.

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He had to make changes– the previous regimen was clearly not working, as was evident all of last season to include the stint on the DL.

Karl, last year was the only year it hasn’t worked. Doc doesn’t think his pitching days are over, but he knew he could never push himself the way he had for ten years again….

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