CLEARWATER, Fla. -- With a little less than two weeks left of camp, right-hander Jason Hammel completed his longest outing of the spring. Despite throwing one more pitch than the predetermined allotment, he was not pleased with much of anything about Sunday's performance in which he allowed four runs to the Phillies in a split-squad game.
"Definitely not the sharpness I wanted to have," said Hammel, who threw 76 pitches, 47 for strikes. "The curveball was lazy. Both breaking balls were a little bad. Out of all my outings, this was definitely the worst. I'll just chalk it up as a work day."
Facing a Phillies lineup filled primarily with regulars, Hammel worked quickly through the first two innings and was able to wiggle out of extensive trouble in the third and fourth frames, giving up a run in each. In the fifth, though, after walking Ben Revere, Hammel served up a two-run homer to Freddy Galvis, who laced a 1-0 changeup over the right-field wall.
"It could have been better," Hammel said of the pitch to the lefty-swinging Galvis. "I was facing a lefty-heavy lineup today and I wanted to get the work in with the changeup. I got some swings and misses and some ground balls, but definitely could have been better."
Making his fourth appearance of the spring, Hammel, who is expected to be the club's Opening Day starter, allowed six hits and one walk while striking out three. The run in the third came as a result of a wind-aided double and the one in the fourth got started with a softly hit bloop double by Michael Young that barely dropped fair.
With Opening Day a little more than two weeks away, Hammel is not concerned about the type of work he's had so far, which has included three Grapefruit League contests and one simulated game.
"Everything is going well, definitely getting stronger," Hammel said. "I'm feeling strong, getting deeper and deeper into games now. Definitely happy with the way my body feels."
Hammel said he is on track to get at least two more starts before the end of camp.
"I thought he pitched inside pretty well today and got in on some pretty good hitters," said bench coach John Russell, who served as the manager in place of Buck Showalter. "I was very encouraged the way he pitched inside. I know he's upset about the runs he gave up, but I think the day went well for him, for what he wanted to do today."
Chris Girandola is a contributor to MLB.com. Gary Cotton is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.