07/14/12 8:02 PM ET
Howard working his way back at the plate
By Trey Scott / MLB.com
Halladay completes bullpen session
DENVER -- Unless something unexpected happens, right-hander Roy Halladay is set to start Tuesday against the Dodgers, Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee confirmed Saturday."As of right now," Dubee said of Halladay's projected start after watching him throw 30 pitches with his fastball and cut-fastball in a bullpen session at Coors Field. Halladay, who couldn't offer much to reporters because he had yet to talk to general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., said the session went fine. "I felt good," Halladay said. Halladay has been on the disabled list since May 28 with a right latissimus dorsi strain. "He looked fine," Dubee said. "Some rust, some inconsistencies. But arm-wise, he's feeling a lot better than he has in a long time. He's getting back to getting on the mound." The Phillies will have Halladay on a pitch limit Tuesday, but Dubee declined to say how many pitches the two-time Cy Young winner will have to work with.
Shane Victorino started Saturday against the Rockies hitting in the No. 2 hole, the second game in a row he's hit there. Victorino, who entered with a .242 average, has spent much of the season hitting third and fifth."If he gets going, he can definitely help us," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "We'll see. I'm not afraid to move my lineup around. If we get guys going, we can have a good lineup, and Shane's a big part of that. Hopefully, he'll start doing better." Victorino went 0-for-4 with a strikeout Friday night. Pitching coach Rich Dubee thinks left-handed reliever Antonio Bastardo, who entered Saturday with a 5.34 ERA, is close to getting some confidence back. "He's one good outing away," Dubee said. "That could change his mindset ... I don't think he's had real confidence since September." Last season, Bastardo ranked 20th among qualifying National League relievers with a 2.64 ERA, and the Phillies are hopeful he can find that same level of consistency. "He's got to throw more strikes and throw more quality strikes," Dubee said. "To be good up here for a while you've got to be consistent." Relief pitcher Michael Schwimer gave up three runs in the seventh inning on Friday night, while managing to get just two hitters out. Dubee had a simple diagnosis of Schwimer's problems. "Did you watch the game?" Dubee said. "He's got stuff, but you can't pitch thigh-high." The Phillies entered their second matchup against the Rockies with a 3-11 record on Saturdays.
Trey Scott is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.