Pitching in: Halladay takes care of business

It’s only March, but the Phillies’ rotation is living up to expectations. Three starters have taken the mound this spring. They have a collective earned-run average of zero.

Roy Halladay worked two scoreless innings in a 6-3 win yesterday over the Toronto Blue Jays. The reigning NL Cy Young winner threw just 25 pitches — 18 for strikes — while striking out one.

Placido Polanco paced the offense, driving in two runs and scoring another. Carlos Ruiz went 1-for-2 with an RBI double. Five of the Phillies’ eight hits came in a three-run fourth.
So, a quick review: Cole Hamels allowed a run in two innings this past Saturday, but it was unearned. On Sunday, fifth starter Joe Blanton threw three scoreless, no-hit innings. Next up, Cliff Lee. He’ll take the mound today.

Extra bases

» Big Ben

Outfielder Ben Francisco served as DH, going 1-for-2 with an RBI. John
Mayberry started at first base. Ryan Howard had the day off.

» Second opinion

With Chase Utley (knee) hurt, Wilson Valdez started at second and batted
ninth. He walked and scored.

» No showdown

Kyle Drabek, centerpiece of the Roy Halladay deal, was scheduled to
start for the Jays. But he was scratched with soreness in his neck.

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