Shutting down Roy Halladay because of his shoulder problems remains a possibility for the Phillies, but for now at least he’s scheduled to start Saturday against the Marlins.
Halladay failed to make it out of the second inning Saturday versus the Braves, allowing seven runs and struggling with shoulder muscle spasms, but Todd Zolecki of MLB.com reports that he had no issues during a 32-pitch bullpen session today.
Pitching coach Rich Dubee called the bullpen session “very encouraging” and repeatedly credited Halladay for being “super accountable” by wanting to pitch rather than calling it a season early. Of course, whether that’s actually a positive thing in the big picture is debatable.
Halladay, who’ll be 36 years old next season, has a 4.40 ERA in 151 innings for his worst mark since 2000, snapping a streak of four consecutive seasons with a sub-3.00 ERA.
Pirates outfielder Starling Marte is back in the lineup after the team reinstated him from the 10-day disabled list on Saturday. Marte served the bare minimum on the DL after making a rapid recovery from the right oblique strain that sidelined him several weeks ago.
Prior to landing on the disabled list, the 29-year-old outfielder was off to a strong start. He slashed a robust .308/.366/.503 with six home runs, 10 stolen bases and an .869 OPS in 175 plate appearances with the team. This is the first time he’s dealt with an oblique issue, and the first DL stint he’s served since he suffered a bout of back tightness in 2016. While he has yet to prove he can bounce back to his pre-injury production levels, his quick recovery bodes well for a successful return to major-league play.
In a corresponding move, outfielder Jose Osuna was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. The move came as somewhat of a surprise, given that the Pirates elected to retain top prospect outfielder Austin Meadows rather than the more established Osuna. Meadows was recalled from Triple-A in the wake of Marte’s injury and has only played seven games at the major league level so far, but he’s already made a strong impression: he went 13-for-29 with three home runs, two stolen bases and five RBI since his call-up on May 18.