Originally posted on Philly Sports World  |  Last updated 8/4/12

Roy Halladay returned to the Phillies last night. No, it wasn’t his first game back from a DL stint for a strained latissimus dorsi muscle, but it was certainly the night that Halladay came back.

Halladay missed nearly two months of this miserable season, and when he returned, he was not the Doc that we had seen in the past. Halladay’s lack of form may have been responsible for the Phillies re-signing Cole Hamels and hanging on to Cliff Lee beyond the non-waiver trade deadline. Yes, Roy Halladay is THAT important to the Phillies.

If the Phillies are to resurrect themselves in 2013, Roy Halladay will have to regain the form that Philly fans have come to expect from him. Last night, he took a major step towards doing just that. Doc threw 7 shutout innings while allowing 3 hits. He walked one and struck out five. Halladay’s velocity was still off a tick or two but the movement on his pitches returned with a vengeance.

There is no doubt that the Phillies are done for in 2012, but the team’s GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has stated his desire to keep the team competitive in the years to come. Of course this all comes on the heels of a major sell off that has seen the Phillies move three key pieces in the last week. Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton were both moved to the Los Angeles Dodgers this week and Hunter Pence found a new home in San Francisco. But there were also rumors of a trade involving Cliff Lee that never came to fruition.

Signing Cole Hamels and retaining Lee probably had a lot to do with Halladay’s struggles. If last night proves to be a sign of things to come from
Halladay, it may free the Phillies up to deal Lee in the offseason. If not, the team will probably need to hold on to Lee to remain competitive.

Roy Halladay, 35, missed 42 games in which the Phillies fell out of contention going 15-27 with a strained lat muscle in his pitching shoulder. His absence, coupled with those of Ryan Howard and Chase Utley will end the Phillies’ streak of 5 consecutive postseason appearances.

None of that mattered tonight, though, as Doc finally returned home and reminded everyone that he is still the best pitcher in baseball.

Similar Posts:

  • Roy Halladay to Return on Tuesday Against Dodgers
  • Phillies Odds and Ends – All Stars, Hamels Trade (?), Roy Halladay Coming Back
  • The Cliff Lee Saga – Are the Phillies Contemplating Trading Him?
  • Cliff Lee Leads Phillies to Win…Finally
  • Phillies Pitching Needs to Improve to Sustain a Run

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