Game 84: The return of Halladay

Roy Halladay spent most of his career in Toronto before being traded to the Phillies in 2009. (Kathy Willens/AP file photo)

TORONTO -- There is a great deal of excitement here for the return of a pitcher that a city fell in love with before Philadelphia adopted him. Roy Halladay is the talk of the town and many Blue Jays fans have donned No. 32 Halladay shirts and jerseys this weekend.

It's funny because I've done a few radio interviews with local Toronto stations and many of the questions went like this: "Does Philly really appreciate what it has?"

There is quite a level of respect for Halladay in Toronto. He came here as a 21-year-old confused rookie and left as the game's best pitcher. He is from Colorado but is viewed as a native son of Canada.

The vocal response was overwhelming when Halladay delivered the lineup card to home plate prior to Friday's Canada Day game. Expect more of that today.

One matchup to watch: Corey Patterson is inserted into left field for the Jays because he is 7 for 19 lifetime against Halladay. No other Toronto player has more than one career hit against the righthander.


A plethora of injury updates:

-- Cole Hamels (right hand bruise) played catch today and will throw his bullpen Sunday. Nothing has changed. Expect him to start Tuesday.

-- Roy Oswalt saw spinal surgeon Drew Dossett in Dallas on Friday and the second opinion concurred with what the Phillies originally had: No disks in Oswalt's back are ruptured. They are just bulging. The team will continue with treatment that involves more injections and he could begin a throwing program soon.

-- Ryan Madson (right hand bruise) played catch for the first time since going on the disabled list earlier in the week. He'll do it again Sunday. And if it wasn't clear already, he will not be activated Monday when eligible.

-- Brad Lidge (shoulder, elbow) threw a 44-pitch bullpen session in Reading on Friday. Expect him to begin a minor-league rehab assignment early this coming week.

-- Joe Blanton (elbow) is still not throwing off a mound, but could do that soon.


Ross Gload will make his first start in the field in 44 days. He's at first base as Ryan Howard is the designated hitter.

1. Jimmy Rollins 6
2. Placido Polanco 5
3. Chase Utley 4
4. Ryan Howard 0
5. Shane Victorino 8
6. Raul Ibanez 7
7. Domonic Brown 9
8. Ross Gload 3
9. Carlos Ruiz 2

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