Roy Halladay spreads more optimism

A surgeon opened Roy Halladay's shoulder May 16 and five days later, the Phillies' erstwhile ace arrived at the team's facility in Clearwater, Fla. There, an athletic trainer tested Halladay's range of motion. It was better than the results from spring training.

Halladay, 36, is as optimistic as ever he will pitch in 2013. The recovery process from shoulder surgery is not precise. The Phillies estimated a six to eight week period of rest from surgery until Halladay can start throwing. It is not prudent to think beyond each week, Halladay said.

"In my mind there's no doubt that I won't be back this year," Halladay said. "It's a week-to-week process. There could be bumps in the road but as of right now, I don't see any reason why I shouldn't be back this year."

The pitcher was in Philadelphia for a doctor's examination. He will return to Clearwater, where his rehab will continue away from the fever of a major-league season. Halladay said he hopes to reappear for the occasional homestand so he can be around his teammates.

Halladay's workouts consist of leg and arm strengthening routines. He said he feels stronger, a noted difference from before.

The results of the range of motion testing reveal what was painfully obvious: Halladay pitched hurt for longer than two starts.

Halladay said he was most surprised by a bursa sac removed from his shoulder. Scans revealed that it hardened and was inflamed in the back of his shoulder. That corrupted any normalcy for Halladay. The surgeon also cleaned his rotator cuff and labrum, both of which were fraying.

He has yet to pick up a baseball and will not do so for quite some time.

"I don't think throwing is going to be an issue," Halladay said. "I think I'm going to feel good throwing. But the everyday throwing -- the pitching every five days -- how that is going to affect things, we don't know. There are still a lot of variables and unknowns. But my gut feeling is that I will be back and I can tell you that I feel a lot better than I thought at this point."

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