Morning misc: Romero throws

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J.C. Romero faced hitters today for the first time this spring. (Yong Kim / Staff Photographer)

I have at least one thing in common with Brad Lidge -- I'll be sitting down to do my NCAA Bracket today. The Phils closer was doing his in the clubhouse today. I'll probably be doing mine just before game time. My gut-reaction bracket after the Selection Show had Baylor in the Final Four, but I was listening to a sports radio show the other day, and the host was predicting Baylor in the Final Four, which leads me to believe that it isn't going to happen. Problem is, I don't believe in teams that struggle on the boards, as Villanova does, and on perimeter defense, as Duke does, but Baylor is the best option I can come up with for knocking either off.

Regardless. . .

. . .J.C. Romero faced hitters today for the first time this spring. He appeared to come out of the session with no physical problems, although he still seems to be finding a feel for his slider. I haven't had a chance to talk to Romero or pitching coach Rich Dubee, who supervised the session, but to the naked eye the lefty still has some work to do before he is ready to pitch in games. The positive news, of course, is that he continues to remain in good health. The Phillies would gladly sacrifice the first three weeks of the season if it means having him at full strength for the rest of the season.

. . .Chase Utley will get consecutive days off for the second time this spring. I wouldn't read too much into it -- he participated in pre-game fielding and hitting drills yesterday, and heading into today he has played just one less Grapefruit League game than Jimmy Rollins.

. . .Righthander Joe Blanton pitches today against the Yankees here at Bright House Field. The Phillies are off tomorrow, then return to action Friday night at home against the Orioles.

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