Francisco hits HR in Phillies’ win over Pirates
Francisco, who entered spring training trying to win the starting right field job vacated by Jayson Werth’s(notes) departure to Washington, tied Ryan Howard(notes) for the team lead with five homers. He finished 1 for 4, dropping his average to .377.
Philadelphia right-hander Roy Oswalt(notes) gave up a pair of first-inning runs before retiring 11 of 12 until faltering in the fifth when he walked two and allowed two RBI singles before being lifted. Oswalt, who will start Sunday’s game against his former Houston Astros, finished the spring with a 5.76 ERA.
“I was a little wild and the ball felt cueballish,” said Oswalt, who allowed five hits, walked four and struck out four. “It didn’t feel like seams, going from 85 degrees to 30.”
Asked if he felt ready for the regular season, Oswalt said, “Better be.” He suffered a neck contusion in his previous start last Wednesday against Tampa Bay, but showed no ill effects on Tuesday. He said there was some stiffness during his first few pitches in the bullpen, but it loosened up as the game wore on.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel isn’t concerned about Oswalt.
“He got his work in,” Manuel said. “His arm is fine, that’s the only thing I care about. He’s healthy and ready to go.”
Ross Ohlendorf(notes), who won 11 games last year, started for the Pirates and finished a rocky spring by allowing six runs—four earned—and seven hits in four innings while hitting three batters. The right-hander was 0-4 with a 10.05 ERA in his first five spring outings.
“I’ve seen guys have springs that don’t get anybody out,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Ohlendorf. “He’s one of our starters. He’ll be in the rotation. He knows what he has to do, keep the ball down and his breaking ball has to be sharper. He has to trust his stuff and keep it low.”
NOTES: Pirates RHP Michael Dubee(notes), son of Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee, pitched one scoreless inning, striking out one. … Phillies LHP Cole Hamels(notes) is scheduled to start against right-hander Charlie Morton(notes) in the conclusion of the two-game exhibition series Wednesday. … Pittsburgh’s Neil Walker(notes) went 3 for 4 and now has 12 hits in his last 20 at-bats. 2B Luis Castillo(notes), vying for a spot on the Phillies after being released by the New York Mets, went 2 for 4 with an RBI.