Roy Oswalt finished up his 97-pitch outing against the Phillies on Friday and said, “I feel like I started the season backward.”
That’s understandable, considering less than a week ago he was pitching in a playoff atmosphere and now, he’s back in the laid-back atmosphere that is the Grapefruit League.
Don’t fret about Oswalt giving up three runs to the Phillies; his goal was to come close to 100 pitches, which he achieved. He also felt better as the outing continued.
“I felt strong early — too strong, actually,” he said. “I couldn’t get the ball down, I kept throwing up in the zone. I felt better late in the game, in the fourth and fifth and six innings. I started getting a little edge knocked off.”
After pitching in the World Baseball Classic, Oswalt struggled to switch gears so quickly.
“It was a little different atmosphere out there,” he said. “You go from having to win every time out to trying to work on some stuff to get ready for the season.”
Oswalt threw two bullpen sessions between his last start for Team USA and his start Friday. He’ll have one more outing before Opening Day, and I’m pretty confident he’ll be ready to go on Opening Day April 6.