Roy Halladay had just earned his first win of the 2011 season. Yet there he was, fully clad in a suit, giving Cole Hamels a lesson. Only this one didn’t involve pitching.
As Hamels struggled to maneuver a remote-control helicopter, Halladay deftly grabbed the reins and piloted the kid’s toy around the Phillies’ clubhouse.
Is there anything the Cy Young winner can’t do?
The playground-like scene came less than two hours after Halladay had thrown seven shutout innings Thursday in an 11-0 win over the Mets. Halladay (1-0, 0.69 ERA) surrendered just six hits and one walk, while recording seven strikeouts on 113 pitches.
“There are times when you feel like you’re in trouble, I never felt like that,” Halladay said. “I felt like I could make pitches and get out of it.”
Like in the third inning, when the Mets loaded the bases with one out. Instead of panicking, the mechanical right-hander reached back and struck out David Wright without even trying. Seconds later, he got Ike Davis to ground out.
“I don’t pitch for strikeouts,” Halladay said. “I don’t want to toss myself into a big inning by getting behind [in counts] and having to throw a pitch I don’t want to throw.”
The Phillies rewarded their ace by spotting him a two-run lead in the bottom-half of the third. They added eight more runs before Halladay exited to a standing ovation after the seventh.
3 things we saw at the ballpark …
1 Everybody hits. Raul Ibanez’s two-run homer in the seventh inning ensured that every member of the Phillies’ lineup finished with at least one hit. Collectively, the team went 16-for-37 and scored 11 runs. The lead-off man reached base in every inning for the Phils.
2 Making the most of it. No Chase Utley, no problem — at least not the way Wilson Valdez is swinging the bat. The journeyman had four hits, a career high. Valdez, a career .241 hitter, is batting .429 with 5 RBIs this season.
3 To err is New York. The Mets doubled their error total (now at four) for the season. First, Angel Pagan misplayed a Shane Victorino single in the third, then Ike Davis muffed a possible double-play ball in the fifth. Both gaffes led to Phillies runs.