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Sent back to Minors, Rosenberg's velocity down

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MILWAUKEE -- B.J. Rosenberg pitched effectively enough late last season that he entered Spring Training as a heavy favorite to win a job in the Phillies' bullpen.

He got a spot, but on Tuesday the Phillies optioned him to Triple-A Lehigh Valley for the second time this season as they made room for right-hander Jeff Manship, who they activated from the 15-day disabled list.

Rosenberg had a 6.75 ERA in 13 appearances. He allowed 10 runs (nine earned), seven walks, five home runs and struck out nine in 12 innings after he allowed six runs, seven walks, no home runs and struck out 17 in his final 16 1/3 innings last year. Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said the biggest difference in Rosenberg is a drop in velocity.

"It's not the same as it was last September," Sandberg said. "He was throwing it 95, 96 mph. He was humping up there. He closed a game. He was pitching in the eighth. But he hasn't had the velocity. I don't know [why]. He doesn't have it yet."

Rosenberg's fastball has averaged 92.6 mph this season, according to FanGraphs. It averaged 94.3 mph in the final two months of last season, and 95.3 mph in 2012.

Sandberg said Rosenberg has been working on a cutter and two-seam fastball to give his ball more movement.

"As he goes along it might be good for him," Sandberg said.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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