From all accounts, Roy Halladay struggled Tuesday night at Lakewood in his second rehab start. He hit 89 mph in the first inning, according to CSNPhilly.com, but averaged 87 on the night and didn't impress with his command.
The Halladay situation is one of the main storylines over the next month. The Phillies thought he might be ready to return after two rehab starts, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Halladay's command remains an issue.
You have to wonder if all of the physical changes to his shoulder have simply prevented him from being consistent in his delivery and the movement his pitches generate. It's not all mental. And it might not be something that surgery corrects.
Halladay said that he believes he can be effective if his velocity never returns. "I think I can rely on my curveball and splitter, and my cutter is coming around. I feel like Jamie Moyer did it and he was throwing 82, so I definitely feel like I can do it,” he told reporters Tuesday.
Maybe. Moyer is a gigantic exception, though. Nine out of 10 times, when a pitcher loses his velocity, movement and command, he's done.
The Phillies need Halladay to return in September for at least two starts if they want to re-sign him for 2014. If he doesn't, he'll find a job elsewhere. Some team will take a chance on him. Teams are still taking chances on Mark Prior, for goodness sake. But the Phils, a team with questions in the rotation and $110 million committed to next year's payroll, will need some concrete evidence that Doc can still pitch if they intend to keep him.
Here are three scenarios:
1) Halladay doesn't progress enough in his rehab and doesn't make it back to the majors this season.
2) Halladay makes 1-2 more rehab starts before joining the Phillies and pitching OK in three September starts.
3) Halladay makes it back to the bigs and pitches very well in September.
It will be an agonizing decision for the Phillies' front office no matter which options plays out.
Or maybe it won't even be in their hands. Halladay is obsessed with winning and he almost certainly won't be able to do that here.
"I’ve played a long time. I’m not playing for money," he said Tuesday. "I’m not playing for anything else. If I have a situation where I have a chance to win, I might pay them."
Phillies sign Roger Bernadina
The Phillies added to their outfield mix on Wednesday by signing former National Roger Bernadina.
Bernadina, 29, was released by Washington on Monday to make room for David DeJesus, who the Nationals acquired from the Cubs. CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury first reported the Phils' interest in Bernadina on Monday.
Bernadina is a left-handed hitter who can play all three outfield positions. He was a great extra man for the Nats last season, hitting .291/.372/.405 in 261 plate appearances. Like most Nationals, Bernadina took a step back this season. He hit .178 with a .517 OPS in 85 games.
Bernadina is a solid defener and baserunner. He's stolen 51 bags the last four seasons and been caught just eight times. He also has 24 outfield assists in limited playing time since 2010.
In 61 career plate appearances at Citizens Bank Park, Bernadina has hit .309 with seven extra-base hits.
To make room on the active roster, the Phillies optioned Michael Martinez to Triple A Lehigh Valley.
1) Jimmy Rollins, SS
2) Michael Young, 1B
3) Chase Utley, 2B
4) Domonic Brown, LF
5) Darin Ruf, RF
6) Cody Asche, 3B
7) Erik Kratz, C
8) John Mayberry, CF
9) Cliff Lee, P