Out of the Batter’s Box: Phillies pitchers and catchers report

With spring training now underway in Clearwater it is time to return to our morning round-up of Phillies coverage from the beat, blogs and beyond. Here is a look at some o the top stories from yesterday and more. We will be doing this every weekday throughout the season.

The Phillies have a new conditioning and training center in Clearwater. And it is beautiful.

How is Roy Halladay doing? Todd Zolecki of MLB.com interviewed Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee about the status of Roy Halladay. Dubee says "It’s going to take him a while to put all the pieces together in his delivery," but notes that is what spring training is for. Reading through the interview honestly does not leave me a whole lot of reason to feel overly confident about Doc returning to 2010 form.

Hamels on opening day, Halladay in home opener? Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com is already exploring the potential pitching rotation for the start of the season and it is rather interesting. Cole Hamels could realistically be the Phillies opening day starter this season after a strong 2012. In Salisbury's column the idea of having Hamels receive the opening day assignment and having Roy Halladay get to start the home opener is explored and it makes sense. But let's also remember Hamels does not have a great track record in his first starts of the year.

Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News has 5 more burning Phillies questions about the formula for success this season. Among them, the impact Mike Adams will have on the bullpen and the annual debate of whether or not Jimmy Rollins is an ideal leadoff hitter.

Adams should have a significant impact on the backend of the bullpen. Bridge to Papelbon anybody? As for Rollins, he may not be the ideal leadoff hitter, but the more important question might be if he is the best option available to Charlie Manuel. I am OK with it, all things considered. I look forward to seeing this question debated 50 times this season.

Also on Philly.com, Matt Gelb takes a look at Chase Utley and Ryan Howard. Both arrived early for spring training and needless to say a full season from both could be a big difference in 2013. Gelb also takes a look at pitchers Kyle Kendrick and John Lannan and says they must pull their weight at the back end of the starting rotation. I believe Kendrick and Lannan will be decent end-of-the-rotation guys for the Phillies. We will see how it plays out.

Perhaps the biggest news from Philly.com yesterday though was the announcement that Zoo With Roy joining the team. 

Phillies spring training photos, via Philly.com.

Chase Utley. Take note of the new batting practice hat. Not bad looking at all, really.

Elsewhere, former Phillies third baseman Scott Rolen has declined an invite from the Cincinnati Reds, but he has not officially retired. Yet. Also, former Phillies reliever Ryan Madson has been shut down by the Anaheim Angels due to and elbow issue, according to CSNPhilly.com.

As if you are not jumping yet for spring training, here are nine reasons to get excited for Phillies spring training.

Happy birthday Kevin Stocker, who played in a crazy game in his Phillies debut in 1993.

Want to blog about the Phillies? We may have a spot for you.

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