3/3/2013 3:50 P.M. ET
Howard, Brown help Phillies outslug Blue Jays
By Adam Berry / MLB.com
CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Jose Bautista crushed his second homer of the spring, but the Phillies countered with plenty of their own power, beating the Blue Jays, 13-5, at Bright House Field on Sunday afternoon.
Toronto jumped out to score four runs within the first three innings, and Bautista punctuated the early scoring by ripping a solo shot to left field straight through a stiff breeze and the unseasonably chilly Florida air.
But Phillies outfielder Domonic Brown cranked a solo shot to right field in the fourth inning, cutting Toronto's lead to one. Then first baseman Ryan Howard, continuing his hot start, got a hold of a 1-0 pitch from Brett Cecil and sent a three-run homer well over the right-field fence and past the black chain-link fence that marks the boundary of Bright House Field.
Howard's third Grapefruit League homer put the Phillies ahead by two in the fifth, and the rest of Philadelphia's bats came to life in the sixth inning, tacking on four more runs to build a commanding lead over Toronto.
Adam Lind's sacrifice fly in the first inning put the Blue Jays on the board, but the Phillies tied it up in the bottom of the inning, when Kevin Frandsen blasted a triple to the right-field wall and slid home to score on a wild pitch by left-hander Ricky Romero. Romero bounced back with a perfect second inning.
Meanwhile, the Blue Jays tacked on two more runs in the second against Phillies starter Aaron Cook. Emilio Bonifacio singled, stole second and third base, then scored as Phillies catcher Erik Kratz launched his throw to third into the outfield. Henry Blanco then doubled and scored on a throwing error by shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt.
Bautista's blast came in the third, when he cranked what Cook joked was a "center-center" fastball "600 feet" into the left-field seats for a solo homer. But that was the last run Cook would allow, as he left after four innings with four runs (three earned) on seven hits and a strikeout.
"I felt like I was making some pretty good pitches, and they were finding some holes," said Cook, aiming for a job somewhere on Philadelphia's pitching staff. "Made a couple bad ones, and they got hit pretty hard."
Blue Jays third baseman Mark DeRosa hit his first homer of the spring, a solo shot to left field, in the sixth to bring Toronto within one run.
Up next: Left-hander John Lannan will make his second start of the spring Monday, leading the Phillies against the Pirates at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Fla., at 1:05 p.m. ET. He'll be followed on the mound by lefties Adam Morgan and Raul Valdes, as well as right-handed setup man Mike Adams.