Halladay gets some work in during ‘lethargic’ spring start

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Phillies starting pitcher Roy Halladay talks with pitching coach Rich Dubee. (David Maialetti/Staff Photographer)

Roy Halladay got roughed up during his Tuesday start against the Tigers. Our favorite Penguin, Zoo with Roy, is here to speak on behalf of Halladay and explain why he struggled so much.

As you all know, Harry Leroy Halladay III is renowned for his tireless work ethic.

It’s evident based on yesterday’s performance that the two-time Cy Young award winner, perfect-game craftsman, and playoff no-hitter auteur hasn’t stopped focusing on different elements of his game: Doc’s still honing his arsenal of pitches down in Clearwater.

In fact, on Tuesday against the Detroit Tigers, Halladay made it a point to work on his seldom thrown "lethargy ball" against a lineup comprised mostly of bench players and non-prospects you’ll never hear of again.

To the untrained eye, the results were poor: 2 ⅔ innings pitched, lots of walks, a pegged batter (clearly Halladay was upset his aim was off versus Tyler Moore last week), a wild pitch, dwindling velocity, and a most un-Doc-like amount of runs surrendered, including a grand slam (!) to some guy whose name I’ve already forgotten.

Said Halladay after the game: "I just felt lethargic. But you know, that was kind of the point today. I was really working on some things as we all do during spring training. Today was all about my lethargy -- well, Dubee calls it the ‘L-Bomb’ -- but I call it my lethargy ball. It’s kind of like a telegraphed changeup in the middle of the plate. I modeled it after an early [Kyle] Kendrick sinker, but don’t tell him I said that.”

On balance, Halladay was quite pleased with the results of Tuesday’s lethargic work session, which I feel the need to remind you took place in a practice baseball game that has no bearing on any standings related to real life professional sports.

“I'll trade that any day of the week... feeling lethargic over being sore like last spring training, where there were times you're hurt,” said Halladay, accidentally admitting he was in fact injured during last season’s spring campaign.

But clearly being on point with his lethargy wasn’t good enough for the totally healthy and optimistic Halladay.

“There's definitely work to be done, adjustments to be made."

That’s Roy, though. Always tweaking, fiddling, grinding; ever the professional.

When asked about Halladay’s outing, Tigers scrub and Pennsylvania native Don Kelly -- who homered in the second inning -- said, “Oh definitely! The ball was extremely lethargic today. Do you think I could hit a bomb off Roy Halladay if he were throwing non-lethargy balls?! Yeah, right. I was just happy he decided to work on it today and was, frankly, so surgical with it.”

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