Phillies Notes: Even with black eye, Halladay looks good

Roy Halladay delivers during six shutout innings against the Yankees in a 7-0 exhibition victory.
Roy Halladay delivers during six shutout innings against the Yankees in a 7-0 exhibition victory.
Posted: March 11, 2011

CLEARWATER, Fla. - It was only a Grapefruit League game that will be erased from record books and memory banks in a few weeks, when the regular season begins.

Still, Roy Halladay against CC Sabathia and the New York Yankees is as good as it gets in spring training.

Halladay was better than good in his third spring start, throwing six shutout innings Thursday during a 7-0 Phillies win at Bright House Field. The ace of the Phillies' four aces threw three perfect innings, surrendered a couple of singles in the fourth, and finished by working out of a second-and-third, two-out jam in the sixth.

Jorge Posada swung through a 3-2 curveball from Halladay to end the sixth, drawing the loudest reaction of the afternoon from the crowd.

"I think especially in spring training it's nice to have some of those situations," Halladay said. "You know you have to make some pitches to get yourself out of an inning. I think it helps you through the season, especially when it's late in the game and it feels like it matters."

Despite a string of 11 scoreless innings in his three starts, Halladay has not had a completely successful spring. He suffered a black eye three days ago and he confessed how it happened.

While practicing bunts in the indoor batting cage, he was nailed in the face by a ball.

"It came at my chest and I tried to block it and move," Halladay said. "It was self-defense."

Mayberry remains hot

Manager Charlie Manuel gave Ryan Howard the day off Thursday, and John Mayberry Jr. stepped in and contributed a two-run home run, his third of the spring.

"I think things are going pretty well so far," Mayberry said. "I'm just going to try to keep focused and do some of the things I intended at the outset."

Second baseman Josh Barfield, a non-roster invitee, continued his impressive spring with a single off Sabathia and triple off David Robertson. He's hitting .538.

"It seems like he's never been given a long shot to really excel in the major leagues," Manuel said. "He has been given some short streaks and it has been hard for him to grab hold and keep a job."

Depending on what happens with second baseman Chase Utley and his battle to return from a knee injury, an extra infield spot could be open at the start of the season.

Pete Orr, Delwyn Young, and Rule 5 draft pick Michael Martinez are also competing for those spots. Brian Bocock could also be in the mix for a reserve job because of his ability to play shortstop, but he returned to Philadelphia to visit hand specialist Randall Culp after injuring his wrist during Wednesday's game against Detroit.

Contact staff writer Bob Brookover at 215-854-2577 or


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