Phillies 'encouraged' by Roy Halladay's sim game; minors could be next

Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Roy Halladay. (Michael Perez/AP)

WASHINGTON — The three-camera system installed at Bright House Field allowed Ruben Amaro Jr. and Rich Dubee the chance to watch detailed video from Florida of Roy Halladay pitching to a bunch of minor-league kids at 11 a.m. Saturday in a simulated game.

The Phillies general manager and pitching coach engaged Halladay afterward in a conference call. All of the involved parties were "encouraged" by the day's results. Signs point to Halladay next pitching in a minor-league game, possibly Thursday.

"He wants to pitch," Amaro said. "He wants to advance. I don't blame him. He's a competitive guy."

Halladay logged 75 pitches Saturday. He will throw a bullpen session Monday in Clearwater. If he emerges from that without a hitch, his official rehab assignment should start.

Amaro said Halladay's fastball sat in the "mid-to-upper 80s pretty consistently." He added the team was more concerned about Halladay's mechanics — specifically his arm slot — and the reports were favorable.

If Halladay's rehab assignment were to begin Thursday, it is not unreasonable to think he could be in the majors by the start of September. That would allow for approximately four starts of evaluation.

The team and pitcher are invested in a return sometime this season. Halladay, 36, wants to prove his value as an impending free agent. The Phillies would welcome a return, but due diligence is required.

"It's important for us," Amaro said. "Absolutely."

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