The third game of the Phillies' Grapefruit League schedule is in the books, and for those of you who were not fortunate enough to take in the sunshine and blue skies at Dunedin Stadium during a 6-3 win, here are some of the things that jumped out at me:
1) J.C. Ramirez showed why so many people are intrigued with his raw potential, striking out four in two scoreless innings. Ramirez was throwing a fastball in the mid-90's, but velocity has never been the issue. Instead, he needs to develop his change-up and slider while refining his overall command. For at least one day, though, he was overpowering.
2) If Matt Anderson accomplishes his goal and makes the Phillies' Opening Day roster, it will be one of the more improbable stories of the spring. Not only has the former top prospect been out of the majors since 2005, and out of affiliated baseball since 2008, he isn't even in big league camp. Anderson, who signed a minor league deal this offseason, travelled with the team today as an extra man. Still, he checked in at 95 MPH on the scoreboard gun and retired all three batters he faced. At the very least, he earned himself another look, presumably against compeition better than the type you'll find at the end of a Grapefruit League game.
3) Roy Halladay threw two scoreless innings and said afterward he felt pretty much how he expected to feel. So that's that.
4) Carlos Ruiz crushed a hanging breaking ball from Jo-Jo Reyes for a two-run double in the second inning. Placido Polanco went 2-for-3 with 3 RBI.
5) Domonic Brown went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts and a walk. He is 0-for-9 with six strikeouts and two walks in his first three Grapefruit League games. Charlie Manuel said afterward that Brown might be trying too hard and over-swinging. Regardless, it is early. There are a lot more games to play.
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