In Roy Halladay’s 4th start since returning to the rotation Doc turned in another poor performance last night. After a 55-minute rain delay Doc took the mound and allowed a leadoff HR to Will Venable on a 2-0 count to start the game. After getting the next two batters he faced on a line drive out to CF Cesar Hernandez and a strikeout of Jedd Gyorko, he then proceeded to hit Chase Headley – his third hit batsman in Doc’s last two outings. The next three innings Halladay didn’t allow a run and walked just one batter.
The Phils enjoyed a 6-run outburst in the bottom of the first and then tacked on another run in the 3rd with a bases loaded walk by Jimmy Rollins to score Kevin Frandsen, who had a one-out single that eventually lead to the Phils 7th run of the evening. After that the wheels fell off for Doc. In the top of the 5th inning Halladay issued four straight one-out walks allowing a second run to score. This was followed by a Tommy Medica infiled single that also saw Halladay pick up a throwing error, the second error in Doc’s injury shortened 2013 season. He was done for the night, unable to get through the 5th to pick up his second win since his August 25th return to the rotation. Doc gave way to Justin DeFratus who allowed a sacrifice fly and the 5th run Halladay was charged with. Four of them were earned runs.
Doc needed 101 pitches, 44 balls and 57 strikes for a 56.44 % strike ratio to get through 4.1 innings. It was obvious Phils manager Ryne Sandberg tried to leave Halladay in long enough to get the win, but it wasn’t meant to be. His final line for the night was 4 hits, 5 R, 4 ER, 5 BB’s and 6 SO’s. Of the four hits Doc allowed 2 went for extra bases – Venable’s 1st inning bang and a meaningless leadoff double by Medica in the 4th inning. It was also the second time in his last two games Doc had issued 5 BB’s in a game after going 170 straight starts without allowing that many. Halladay’s ERA in the four games since returning is an unimpressive 5.06. Doc’s also allowed 18 hits and 14 BB’s for a 1.500 WHIP.
With just three starts remaining in the 2013 season Halladay is not showing the Phils, or any other team for that matter that he’s capable of being a contributor to their 2014 staff. I’m sure someone will give Doc an incentive laden, make good contract in hopes that an offseason of rest and rebuilding his shoulder strength will allow him to be a possible asset at the back end of their rotation. If Doc is truly serious about winning a World Series in the next couple years his best bet is to hook on with a team like Boston or St. Louis that may give him an opportunity to pitch his way into their rotation – at or near the major league minimum, but again with some incentives for starts, IP etc.
It’s a sad sight when the great ones refuse to go out near the top of their game, instead trying to squeeze more season out of their broken down bodies. We’ve seen it before and we’ll see it again. It’s doubly sad when that player was once a giant of the game and is the class act Roy Halladay has been his entire career.