SARASOTA, Fla. - Antonio Bastardo is arriving in Sarasota later today with the Philadelphia Phillies, so you know it’s going to be a good day.
Jim Johnson and Darren O’Day also are scheduled to pitch today.
For the Phillies:
Ben Revere CF
Jimmy Rollins SS
Chase Utley 2B
Ryan Howard 1B
Michael Young 3B
Domonic Brown RF
John Mayberry LF
Steve Lerud C
Aaron Cook RHP
Today’s game will air on MASN.
Jason Hammel threw six innings and 86 pitches yesterday against Tampa Bay’s Single-A team at Twin Lakes Park.
“I gave up a few singles, and the Rays are the Rays. They run on everything after that. As soon as they get a runner on, the Rays run,” Hammel said.
“I think I gave up one run, but other than that, it was all singles and I got my pitch count up and I felt strong.”
Hammel faced the usual challenges of trying to get his work in against an overly aggressive group of young hitters.
“You can’t really get deep enough in the counts with them to work on some of the things you want to work on - i.e. like striking people out,” he said. “If you want to work on a slider back foot or a curveball in the dirt or something like that, you can’t get there because they swing at the first three pitches, no matter what. But you just get your work in and just treat it like that.
“There were some good at-bats where I was able to do some things that I wanted. And if we had short innings, you just stay out there and work on some other stuff. Whatever level you’re at, there’s still a batter in the box and you’ve still got to throw strikes.”
Manager Buck Showalter continues to hide his starters from division opponents and teams that the Orioles will play early in the season.
“I think it’s good what Buck’s doing,” Hammel said. “Over the next 10 days, we’re seeing only the AL East and then the Twins, who we’re facing the first two weeks of the year. You don’t want to get over-exposed, especially during spring training. It is what it is. You’ve just got to get your work in.”
Hammel figures to be the opening day starter on April 2 at Tropicana Field, but he’s not making any assumptions.
“I haven’t been told anything,” he said. “If it happens, then you guys talk to me about it. I just don’t do that. I don’t count my chickens before they’re hatched.
“Obviously, if it happens, it’s great and it would be an honor, but we’ve still got a few more decisions to make here, so I’m not thinking about that.”