Notes: Rowand seeing clearly now
Center fielder returns to lineup after bout with blurry vision
PHILADELPHIA -- Aaron Rowand saw well enough Saturday to read his name in the Phillies' starting lineup, a day after leaving the game with blurry vision in his right eye.Rowand batted fifth and returned to center field. A combination of things led to the blurriness, which was diagnosed as a scratched eyeball caused by dry eyes and allergies. The blurred vision worsened when he applied Visine, which dilated his eye and affected his sight. "It was real scary during batting practice," said Rowand, who first noticed something while driving to Citizens Bank Park on Friday. "I was having trouble playing catch with Pat [Burrell]. I hoped it would go away, but it didn't." Rowand said he felt better after laying down for 30 minutes after batting practice, so he played. But? "It was hard to see home plate from center field," Rowand said. "After I went up and [struck out] and realized I had no chance, I didn't want to hurt the team playing defense, too. I was having a tough time tracking balls, depth perception and stuff like that." He received medication at the Wills Eye Hospital that cleared up the scratch and restored his 20/15 vision, to where he "can see like a hawk." Three specialists looked at his eye and told him his vision was 20/25 before the treatment. "The vision's fine now," Rowand said, then went on to hit a home run in Saturday's game. Too many hits: A day after being hit on the right elbow, Ryan Howard was in Saturday's starting lineup. That's a lucky development considering that Chase Utley will miss at least a month after Washington's John Lannan broke a bone in his right hand by hitting him with a pitch. The Phillies lead the National League with 67 hit batsman, and manager Charlie Manuel doesn't like that trend. "Nobody likes to get hit," Manuel said. "I don't like it when our players get hit, especially when we get injuries like Chase. A lot of times, it's part of the game. Guys throw inside. If we think they're throwing at us, we definitely have to protect our players." In Howard's case, Manuel doesn't believe that there was intent from Braves reliever Tyler Yates. "He was throwing over the plate to [Howard], then tried to come in on him," Manuel said. If a guy starts throwing behind you, more than likely he's throwing at you. Howard stands away from the plate. They definitely don't want to throw him fastballs on the good part of the plate. They try to throw fastballs from his body to the inside corner. They want him to chase, to try to jam himself." Proud dad: Though it happened on Monday against the Phillies' Class A affiliate, Phils pitching coach Rich Dubee was still pleased to see his son, Michael, get a win for Kannapolis of the Class A South Atlantic League. Dubee's win came after four innings of scoreless relief. He was dealt to the White Sox organization on July 27 for Tadahito Iguchi. "That showed me something," the elder Dubee said. "It's tough to be traded. He was really concerned because [Lakewood] knew him. He said, 'They know how I pitch and how I throw.' He gave up a leadoff double and after that, didn't give up a run. He pitched well, very well." Shenk honored: As part of the Phillies Alumni Weekend, the organization honored longtime vice president of public relations Larry Shenk with a Dick Perez painting, among other items. Second baseman Chase Utley presented the picture, which showed Utley hitting and Shenk in the first row keeping score. Shenk is in his 44th year with the team, and is retiring after the season.
Coming up: Jamie Moyer, who opposes Braves righty Buddy Carlyle on Sunday night at 8:05 ET on ESPN, won for the third time in four starts when he blanked the Marlins through six innings on Tuesday. The only mistake came on the game's first pitch, which Hanley Ramirez hit for a home run. Moyer's ERA (4.70) is slowly dropping after reaching a season-high of 5.01 on July 21.
Ken Mandel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.