An early-spring matchup of CC Sabathia and Roy Halladay, each making their third spring starts, nearly lived up to its billing as neither pitcher allowed a run, a walk, or an extra-base hit through 5 1/2 innings. There after the Yankee bullpen collapsed, while three Phillies relievers cleaned up with a trio of perfect frames as the Phillies won 7-0.
L - Brett Gardner (LF)
R - Russell Martin (C)
S - Jorge Posada (1B)
L - Robinson Cano (2B)
S - Nick Swisher (RF)
L - Curtis Granderson (CF)
R - Jesus Montero (DH)
R - Ronnie Belliard (3B)
S - Ramiro Peña (SS)
Pitchers (IP): CC Sabathia (5), David Robertson (0), Robert Fish (1), Daniel Turpen (1), Mark Prior (2/3), Eric Wordekemper (1/3)
Subs: Brandon Laird (1B), Kevin Russo (2B), Doug Bernier (SS), Bradley Suttle (3B), Gustavo Molina (C), Daniel Brewer (RF), Justin Maxwell (CF), Jordan Parraz (LF)
Formidable Opponents: Six innings of Roy Halladay on March 10, a tall order for the Yankee hitters. He was accompanied by only four of the Phillies' regulars.
Big Hits: None. The Yankees had four singles, all off Halladay and no walks and no player reached base twice. The singles were by Brett Gardner, Russell Martin, Jorge Posada, and Ramiro Peña. Martin was thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double, so Halladay only had to pitch out of the stretch three times all game.
Who Pitched Well: CC Sabathia held the Phils scoreless for five innings on three singles and no walks, though he only struck out two. Rule 5 righty Daniel Turpen worked around a walk for a hitless seventh inning. Eric Wordekemper got the only batter he faced, Triple-A outfielder Matt Miller, to ground out to put an end to Mark Prior's mess in the eighth.
Who Didn't: David Robertson faced one man, failed right-handed second base prospect Josh Barfield, and gave up a lead off triple to start the sixth. Rule 5 lefty Robert Fish followed by allowing not just Barfield to score on a sac fly following a walk to Jimmy Rollins, but by allowing three more on a Placido Polanco double, which plated Rollins, and a two-run John Mayberry Jr. home run. There was another single in there, but Fish picked it's author, Ben Francisco off first base. In the eighth, Mark Prior issued a one-out walk to Wilson Valdez of all people, then saw him score on a Francisco double. Another walk, to minor league first baseman Matt Rizzotti, was followed by a double-steal and a Justin Maxwell error in center on a ball hit by non-roster catcher Erik Kratz that allowed both men to score. Prior was pulled at that point and Eric Wordekemper came in to get the final out.
Rotation Battles: None of the candidates appeared in this game.
Ouchies: The results on Colin Curtis's shoulder are in. It's a subluxation, or partial separation. He'll be out for at least a month. Yogi Berra tripped on a loose piece of carpet in the Yankee clubhouse and fell on his rear. He was taken to the hospital against his wishes for precautionary reasons and discharged in time to get the early bird special. He was reportedly laughing and joking throughout the experience. No one is terribly concerned, but any time an 85-year-old man falls it is taken seriously. CC Sabathia was hit in the right thigh by a comebacker, but shrugged it off like King Kong swatting at an airplane. Righty reliever Warner Madrigal, who has been laying low this spring, felt some soreness in his pitching arm and might be shut down for a few days, not that anyone would notice.
Oopsies: Justin Maxwell's error in center in the eighth allowed two runs to score. Russell Martin turned one of the Yankees four hits into an out by trying to stretch a single into a double in the fourth. Eric Wordekemper moved Kratz to third on a wild pitch before getting the final out of the eighth.
Other: Jorge Posada held his own in his first spring opportunity at first base, even making one unassisted double play, catching a line-drive, then tagging out the runner who had wandered off first. Ronnie Belliard was hitless in his spring debut, but starting out against Halladay seems more than a little unfair.
Next: The second and final split squad of the Yankees' spring schedule. Phil Hughes starts at home against the Braves on YES at 1:05 pm. Ivan Nova starts in Dunedin against the Blue Jays, also at 1:05. Joe Girardi will travel to watch rotation candidate Nova pitch. Both the Braves and Jays are also playing split-squad games on Friday.