The day, much like many of the previous 38 since the Philadelphia Phillies arrived in Clearwater, Fla., for the start of spring training, did not go as planned.
Thursday started with general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. saying All-Star second baseman Chase Utley will likely open the season on the disabled list.
It was followed by another in a series of pedestrian performances from left-hander Cole Hamels, who gave up six runs in a 7-3 Grapefruit League loss to Minnesota. After allowing a total of three earned runs in his first three starts, Hamels has given up 16 runs in his past three.
As far as Utley is concerned, his latest workout included batting practice but no significant infield work, and Amaro was asked if he expected his All-Star second baseman to open the season on the DL.
“I would think so,” Amaro said. “We haven’t seen him on the field yet and we’re a week away (from opening day). It’s likely he’s not going to make our club, at least not right now.”
Amaro said he thinks Utley, out the entire spring with patellar tendinitis in his right knee, is feeling a little better since starting an exercise program recommended by an undisclosed rehab specialist. The general manager added, however, that “it’s kind of a long-term process. It’s not going to happen overnight.”
ROSS OUT 3 WEEKS
San Francisco Giants outfielder Cody Ross, the MVP of last year’s NL Championship Series, is expected to miss the next three weeks because of a strained right calf.
Ross hurt himself chasing down a flyball during a game Wednesday. He had an MRI exam Thursday that confirmed the injury.
A few hours after Tommy Hunter learned he would be in the Texas rotation, despite a 10.97 ERA in three starts, he walked off the mound with the help of a trainer because of a strained right groin in the third inning of a 15-13 win over Cincinnati. Mike Stanton hit two three-run homers and had seven RBI in his injury-delayed debut, and Florida beat Boston, 15-7, in Jupiter, Fla. Stanton strained his right quadriceps on Feb. 27. He has played in minor league games for about the past 10 days. A day after taking a line drive under the right ear while pitching to Tampa Bay’s Manny Ramirez, Phillies right-hander Roy Oswalt said he had a small lump on the back of his head but doesn’t have a headache. He expects to make his next start. Baltimore manager Buck Showalter named Jeremy Guthrie as his opening night starter, in Tampa Bay on April 1. The Rangers settled on their rotation and Neftali Feliz, who set a major league rookie record with 40 saves last season, will remain the closer. Trevor Cahill was named opening day starter for Oakland. Brandon Beachy won the job as the Atlanta Braves’ fifth starter, beating out fellow rookie Mike Minor and veteran Rodrigo Lopez. San Diego Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin left Thursday night’s game against Texas with tightness in his right quadriceps.