Final Week Approaches
It was another gorgeous weather day in Clearwater again, except for the numbers on the scoreboard in left center field. Atlanta downed the Phillies in front of the seventh spring sellout.
Ryan Madson tossed a three-batter scoreless inning, featuring his new biting slider. Tom Gordon was tagged for a couple of unearned runs before leaving because of a pitch count (Phils didn’t want him throwing more than 30 pitches). His velocity did touch 93 on the radar gun.
Pinch hitter Greg Dobbs, battling for a spot on the bench, hit a three-run, opposite field homer in the 9th, his fourth of the spring.
The real pitching match-up took place at Carpenter Field where Brett Myers hooked up against A. J. Burnett in an AAA game between the Phillies minor leaguers and Blue Jays. Attendance there barely reached 40 people.
After the Bright House Networks Field game, Charlie Manuel announced that Myers would be the Phillies opening day starter on Monday, April 2. Myers was pitching at Carpenter Field today rather than face the Braves, whom he’ll duel on April 2.
Tomorrow, the Phillies travel to Sarasota (9 a.m. bus) for a game with the Reds. Back home on Sunday for the Twins. Phillies need to get in gear as the final week approaches.