Prospect Pivetta thrilled to meet hero Halladay

Growing up in Canada, young Phils righty followed former ace's career

Prospect Pivetta thrilled to meet hero Halladay

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- So Phillies prospect Nick Pivetta had a solid weekend.

He pitched two scoreless innings Friday afternoon against the Yankees in a Grapefruit League game in Tampa, then met boyhood hero Roy Halladay on Saturday night at the 44th annual Clearwater For Youth celebrity banquet at the Sheraton Sand Key.

"I got to briefly shake his hand," Pivetta said Sunday morning at Spectrum Field. "He knew I was like a stalker."

Pivetta fans Judge

Pivetta, 24, hails from British Columbia, Canada, so he grew up watching Halladay pitch with the Blue Jays.

Halladay knew about Pivetta -- the Phils' No. 12 prospect according to MLBPipeline.com -- beforehand because somebody tipped him off that he was a big fan.

"Oh, right, you're the guy from British Columbia," Halladay told him.

"At least he knows about me," Pivetta said, laughing.

Halladay spent the final four seasons of his 16-year career with the Phillies, winning the 2010 National League Cy Young Award and throwing a perfect game and a postseason no-hitter.

"There are hundreds of things I respected about him, but the one thing is the way he went about his business and how hard he worked," Pivetta said. "From Day 1, I've realized how hard he worked and what kind of pitcher and role model he was for everyone else, his teammates. That resonated with me, that's what I want to do when I get older and I'm more established."

The good news for Pivetta is that he might have another opportunity to speak with Halladay. The former Phillies ace was expected to drop into camp Sunday.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.