The Phillies had two split squad games scheduled for today. If you were given the choice between Cliff Lee and Kyle Kendrick in pretty much any sort of competition, who would you pick? Cliff Lee is a better pitcher and is considerably more handsome, making this a sort of one-sided contest. I believe that the networks made their choice by putting the Lee start on television.
In the name of fairness, this recap will start with Kyle’s start. Kendrick threw well today against the Tigers and former reliever Phil Coke. He gave up one hit in three innings of work.
John Mayberry Jr. gave the Phillies their only offense with a second inning bomb off of Coke. In the past few seasons Mayberry had certainly proven that he can hit a fastball, especially if said fastball is coming from the left arm of the pitcher. Mayberry is carrying a respectable .300 batting average with two home-runs this spring giving him the inside track on the reserve outfield roster spot for the Phils. Domonic Brown’s hand injury pretty much guarantees that John will make the major league roster this season. Makes you wonder what the pressure of being the son of a major leaguer feels like.
Michail Stutes coughed up the shut-out on an eighth inning blast by TCU alumni Bryan Holaday. In the process the young right hander struck out the side, proving that his strike out numbers that season were no fluke (9.3 strikeouts/9 innings with a 1.80 k/BB rate). Matt Anderson gave up the winning run in the ninth to earn the 2-1 loss. Reports as to if he got the fastball up to 105 MPH vary.
Apparently, Cliff Lee had some sort of mechanical problem during his previous spring outing which was apparently repaired by some sort of divine intervention. Hopefully said divine power will see to it that a certain second baseman’s knee is repaired toot sweet and the entire Philadelphia region will convert to whatever religion said deity desires. Cliff went four innings, giving up two hits and striking out five. Even in March, he has the Ray’s number.
The Phils jumped out to an early lead on homers from Ryan Howard and Bryan Schneider and extended the lead with an RBI single from Placido Polanco.
The Rays climbed back into the game on Eddie Bonine whose last two outings have secured him a job on someone else’s team. I do not think that a 15.75 ERA is going to cut it Eddie. I know that this team probably will not need too much middle relief, but the Phils already have one Danys Baez.
The Phils tied the game on a blast from Matt Rizzotti and won the game on a walk off single from Australian catcher Joel Naughton.
In review; Lee and Howard are good at baseball, John Mayberry may not be quite as bad at baseball as we all thought and Eddie Bonine sucks.
Next up for the Phils, Roy Oswalt will face the New York Yankees tomorrow at 1:05 PM.