03/29/08 5:20 PM ET
Rule 5 Draft pickup Lahey 'thrilled'
College catcher, now a pitcher, tosses one inning in debut
By Joseph Santoliquito / Special to MLB.com
"It came down to a numbers situation with the Cubs," Lahey said. "Jon Lieber was moved to the bullpen, [so] the Cubs had to make a move. In a way, it was good for them and good for me."It's an odd trip that even led Lahey to the mound. He caught at Princeton and had a strong arm, but he struggled offensively.
"My coach at Princeton, Scott Bradley, suggested it might be a good idea that I pitch," Lahey said. "It's funny, because reaching the Majors might not have happened if I lit it up in the Appalachian League with my bat. Coach Bradley opened the idea that I [should] be a pitcher."It's helped Lahey get to the Phillies, who will activate closer Brad Lidge on April 5, when he is eligible to come off the disabled list. "I can't worry about that; my primary concern is do to whatever role they give me, and as long as I get the ball in my hands, I plan to compete and throw hard," Lahey said. "My results [against] Toronto were not great. I felt I needed a little time to get my rhythm going out there. I pitch to contact, and I felt the ball came out of my hand well. The bottom line is I'm here, and I'm excited to be here."
Joseph Santoliquito is a contributor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.