Roy Halladay returned to the place he spent his first 12 major league seasons and took part in a baseball activity as routine as any: he played catch at Rogers Centre in Toronto Friday afternoon.
Halladay threw 30 balls from 60 feet. It may have looked like a routine catch - and it was - but it was also an important step in his return from a right lat injury.
Pitching coach Rich Dubee said the session went better than Halladay expected. Halladay played it down.
"This was one of the steps," Halladay said. "It felt good. Still a long ways to go."
Halladay hadn't thrown a pitch since May 27 in St. Louis, when he left his start after two innings with shoulder soreness.
He is expected to be sidelined for six-to-eight weeks. He was expected to begin throwing again three weeks from the injury.
So he was about two days early...
"I had to do it because of our off day on Monday," Halladay said. "I wanted to get a couple days [of throwing] in. Today, again on Sunday and Tuesday. It’s a day or two early, but it’s basically three weeks."
Halladay will take Saturday off and play catch again Sunday. He said he'd likely "bump up" the throwing sessions Tuesday.
In other Phillies injury news...
--1B Ryan Howard (left Achilles') went 2-for-3 with two home runs in an intrasquad game in Clearwater, Fla. Manager Charlie Manuel said Howard has begun to run to first base after he hits.
--2B Chase Utley (left knee) played an inning at second base in a camp game in Clearwater. Utley went 1-for-4 with a walk. Utley spent the last three nights as the DH for the Class A Clearwater Threshers. Manuel believes Utley will slowly increase his reps at second base, from one inning for a game to three, to six and so on.
--LF/1B Laynce Nix (calf) went 1-for-3 with a home run in an intrasquad game in Clearwater. He could begin an official rehab assignment within the week.