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Phillies’ First 10 Exhibition Games: Some Positives and Negatives

       
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  Joe Blanton    Wilson Valdez    Hunter Pence   Jon Papelbon

Through the first 11 Grapefruit League exhibition games, the Phillies sport a 5-5 record with 1 tie.On the positive side, 2 of the 3 pitchers engaged in the battle for the 4th and 5th starter jobs in the rotation — Joe Blanton and Kyle Kendrick — have yet to be scored upon in five innings of pitching each.   “The Doc” Roy Halladay has been banged up a little in the early exhibition going giving up a single run and 3 runs (on a 2 homers to the same guy) in his first 2 starts spanning five innings while lefthander Cliff Lee threw two innings of shutout ball in his opening start while giving up 2 runs, including a homer in his 2nd start over three innings.   Lefthander Cole Hamels gave up a run over two innings in his first start while tossing three shutout innings in his most recent start.
  Vance Worley
The 3rd man in the 3 man competition for the fourth and fifth starter spots, Vance Worley, who was 11-3 with a 3.01 ERA as a rookie and was in the competition for Rookie of the Year in 2011, was touched for 2 runs in two innings in his first outing, but came back on Monday with a perfect four inning,  8 srikeout effort.Two of the names to watch out of the bullpen: closer Jon Papelbon and lefthanded set-up man Antonio Bastardo have shown well in their early exhibition stints.  Papelbon has given up a run in three innings of work while Bastardo has given up only 1 hit in three innings.

Offensively, the Phils have scored 57 runs in 11 games (5.18 run average per game) while hitting 10 homers without the presence of Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, both rehabbing after surgery, in the lineup.  Rightfielder Hunter Pence leads the team with 2 homers having hit one in each of the first 2 games of exhibition while picking up 6 hits in 21 at-bats in his 9 exhibition appearances.   3rd baseman Placido Polanco got into 2 games getting a hit in each of them in a total of 5 at-bats.    Shortstop Jimmy Rollins (5 for 17 with a homer in 8 games) and centerfielder Shane Victorino (5 for 21 with a homer) are collectively hitting below .250 BA.

These notes are only bits and pieces as it is too early to see indications of team performance or how the opening day roster will shake out at several positions.

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