The Phillies saw their first official spring action today, falling 4-3 to Toronto in a game called due to rain after the top of the seventh.
Roberto Hernandez started the game, seeing his first action for the Phils having thrown to a 5.03 ERA over his last 146 appearances in regular season action. He went two innings, allowing two runs on four hits and no walks. Jose Bautista hit a solo homer off of him in the first and he allowed another run on back-to-back doubles to start the second. Both of the doubles were off the wall, the first, by righty Brett Lawrie, was off the top of the wall and nearly out of the yard.
Seems a good a time as any to point out that Hernandez has allowed 46 home runs over his last 302 1/3 innings pitched, which is about 1.37 per nine innings. Nobody on the Phillies who threw 65 or more innings in 2013 allowed more than one home run per nine innings. Among the guys with at least 65 innings, Lee had the worst rate at 0.89 per nine innings. The righty Bautista got Hernandez in the first, but lefties hit 305/369/537 against the righty Hernandez in 2013 with 17 home runs in 315 plate appearances.
Phillippe Aumont pitched the third, coming off of a 2013 effort in which he walked 51 in 55 innings between the minors and majors. He walked the two first batters he faced and the Blue Jays scored two runs charged to him in the inning on a single, two walks and a wild pitch.
Righty Jeff Manship, who has struggled to retire hitters at the major league level, struck out two in a 1-2-3 fourth and kept the Blue Jays off the board in the fifth as well. One hit, a single, in two scoreless innings for Manship as he strikes out three and gets Bautista to ground into a double-play. The less good news is the career 6.42 ERA and a 1.62 ratio for the 29-year-old righty in 116 1/3 career innings. Righties have hit 329/375/556 against him for his career.
25-year-old righty Kevin Munson, a Rule 5 pick (be afraid, be very afraid), pitched the seventh. Chris Getz bunted for a single to start the frame with Maikel Franco fielding and throwing it away for an error that left Getz at second with nobody out. The Blue Jays bunted the runner to third with the first out, but Munson struck Kevin Pillar out with one down and the man on third. He walked Anthony Gose before getting Dan Johnson to line to short to leave runners on the corners.
Two hits and a walk in the frame, but Munson keeps Toronto from scoring with the help of the big strikeout with a runner on third and one out. He struck out 66 in 54 2/3 innings between Double-A and Triple-A in 2013.
The offense plated three runs in the game — two in the bottom of the first on RBI-singles by Howard and Byrd and the third in the bottom of the fifth when a one-out walk to Tony Gwynn, Jr was followed by a Ronny Cedeno double.
A day after singling and homering off of lefties in an intrasquad game, Howard lined an RBI-single into center off of lefty JA Happ in the bottom of the first. He flew to left in his other at-bat.
Abreu was at DH for the Phils and went 0-for-1 with two walks.
Cedeno’s double in the fifth after the Gwynn walk was the only extra-base hit of the game for the Phils. Cedeno 1-for-1 with a double and Gwynn 0-for-0 with a walk.
Byrd 1-for-2 with an RBI-single and a strikeout.
Ruf walked in his only appearance.
Revere 1-for-2 with a single and Rollins 0-for-1 with a walk.
Brown 1-for-3 with an infield single and a strikeout.
Utley 0-for-2, Asche 0-for-2, Ruiz 0-for-2.
Franco 0-for-1 with the game’s only error at third.