The Philadelphia Phillies continue their intense practice schedule under skipper Ryne Sandberg as they prepare for their first Grapefruit League game Wednesday at Bright House Field as they host the Toronto Blue Jays. The Phillies are planning on having having Roberto Hernandez start that game followed by Jeff Manship, Antonio Bastardo, Brad Lincoln,
Jake Diekman, Kevin Munson, and Phillippe Aumont.
The probable pitchers for the next four games are below.
- Thursday @ Dunedin (Toronto): Cliff Lee, Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, B.J. Rosenberg, Mario Hollands and Mike Stutes.
- Friday vs. Detroit: Kyle Kendrick, Sean O’Sullivan, Justin De Fratus, Aumont, Luis Garcia and Cesar Jimenez.
- Saturday @ Tampa (New York Yankees): Ethan Martin, David Buchanan, Munson, Jeremy Horst, Shawn Camp and Ken Giles
- Sunday vs. Pirates: A.J. Burnett, Jesse Biddle, Jonathan Papelbon, Bastardo, Lincoln and Diekman.
Spring Training notes:
- A deranged fan mail Cliff Lee their fingernail clippings.
- Jamie Moyer and Matt Stairs addressed the media today about their new roles as Phillies broadcasters. Moyer recounted growing up listing to Ford C Frick award winners By Saam and Harry Kalas as well as Richie Ashburn. Moyer said, ” I’m not going to be Harry Kalas, but I’d like to be a good broadcaster like Harry Kalas was.” Moyer will be in the booth 109 games while Stairs will do 108 games. They will sometimes have a three man booth but not always. When asked if they could be hard on players that were once their teammates, Stairs said “I’m not going to embarrass a guy on the air but Philly wants to hear the truth. They want to hear what’s going on and our opinion of the game. I don’t have problems with that.” Moyer added, “It’s all about being honest.”. Former broadcaster Chris Wheeler discussed his dismissal from Comcast, his legacy, and his future with Phillies beat writer Todd Zolecki on his blog. Wheeler was gracious in the article and showed class and respect.
- The long awaited debut of Cuban defector Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez will be postponed. He was scheduled to pitch two innings after Cliff Lee on Thursday but he is ill so his debut will be pushed back. So far Gonzalez has not looked good in bullpen and batting practice sessions. His fastball does not have zip on it and his offspeed pitches have lacked movement.
- Cole Hamels looks fantastic after being behind schedule after offseason shoulder tendinitis. The left hander will move to a mound session tomorrow and is only expected to miss his first and possibly second start of the season. Pitching coach Bob McClure said Hamels was “A week, 10 days, two weeks (behind schedule)”.
- Ryne Sandberg and Larry Bowa have been preaching fundamentals this spring. The team is taking many more fielding reps than they have in recent years to ensure that the club’s defense improves.
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Bill Zeltman is the cohost of MTR Morning Throwdown on MTR Radio every weekday from 7-9am EST. Bill has written nearly 3,000 articles about the Philadelphia Phillies since 2007 and has been following the team avidly since 1980. Bill is the cofounder of MTR Radio and has an MBA in marketing. He is currently pursing a doctorate in Organizational Leadership. Follow Bill on Facebook and Twitter.