Halladay throws 4 scoreless innings for Toronto
DUNEDIN, Fla. (AP)—Roy Halladay has been sharp all spring.
Craig Monroe homered in the ninth for Pittsburgh.
Paul Maholm matched Halladay’s four scoreless innings for the Pirates, allowing three hits and striking two.
“Two of the three hits today were four-seamers that didn’t really go where I wanted them to,” Maholm said. “They were up and they hit them the other way. But I’ll take a couple singles.
“I was throwing the kitchen sink at them. I don’t feel like I have a specific thing to work on. It’s mainly trying to get into a rhythm. There are some small things that need to be more consistent, but it’s spring training. I can continue to work on that stuff,” he added.
Halladay gave up a one-out double to Andrew McCutcheon and a walk to Nate McLouth in the first inning, then set down the remaining 11 Pirates he faced, including six on grounders and four strikeouts.
“I think I needed another eight or 10 pitches in the bullpen,” after throwing about 55 in the game, Halladay said.
He added that he tried to throw as many changeups as he could, about nine in all, and experimented a bit with other pitches.
“Every time out there’s something,” Halladay said. “The curveball’s not as good or you want to improve this or improve that.”
This time it was the changeup, building confidence and “getting to know when I can use it effectively and what’s going to happen,” he said.
“Any time a pitcher can learn how to throw an effective changeup,” Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston said, “that can be one of the toughest pitches to hit because it looks like a fastball and it’s hard to adjust to it. It’s a good pitch to have. It’s an awesome pitch.”
Monroe’s one-out homer to left-center tied it in the ninth against right-hander Robert Ray.
Brad Emaus nearly won it for the Blue Jays, leading off the bottom of the 11th with a drive to right-center that Jeff Salazar hauled in with a leap at the fence.
An MRI on Toronto pitcher Brian Wolfe’s right shoulder showed inflammation but that he was “otherwise OK,” Gaston said. Wolfe felt tightness in shoulder while warming up in the bullpen Tuesday, then felt a pop while pitching against the Rays. … Blue Jays right-hander Brian Bullington was returned to minor league camp, and right-hander T.J. Beam and outfielder Buck Coats were sent outright to Triple-A Las Vegas. … Hall of Fame pitcher Ferguson Jenkins threw out the first pitch. … The Blue Jays are off Thursday and will start Brett Cecil on Friday against Tampa Bay.