Halladay enjoys strong start in Phils' win

Halladay enjoys strong start in Phils' win

at Bradenton, Fla.
Monday, March 15

Phillies at the plate: First baseman Ryan Howard went 2-for-3 with an RBI single in the fifth. Jayson Werth and Carlos Ruiz also finished with multihit games. Third baseman Cody Ransom, who replaced an injured Placido Polanco, hit his third home run of the spring -- a solo shot in the seventh. Wilson Valdez scored twice and doubled home a run.

Pirates at the plate: Outfielder Lastings Milledge gave the Pirates an early lead with an RBI single in the second. Ryan Doumit, who had doubled earlier in the inning, scored on the hit. Andrew McCutchen and Delwyn Young each finished the game with one hit.

Phillies on the mound: In his third start of the spring, Phillies ace Roy Halladay allowed one run and three hits in five innings. The right-hander walked two and struck out six. David Herndon pitched two scoreless innings in relief. Chad Durbin didn't allow a baserunner in his one inning of work.

Pirates on the mound: Zach Duke ran into some trouble late, which kept him from being able to finish his planned four-inning start. In 3 2/3 innings, Duke allowed one run on two hits and three walks. He struck out four. Evan Meek gave up three runs and four hits in 1 1/3 innings of relief. Jeremy Powell allowed one run in two innings.

Worth noting: Polanco suffered a sprained right knee while trying to catch a third-inning popup. The severity of the sprain was not immediately known. ... With his second-inning hit, Milledge has now hit safely in six of his past seven games. ... With six strikeouts on Monday, Halladay now has 14 in 10 Grapefruit League innings.

Grapefruit League records: Phillies 6-4-1; Pirates 4-8-1

Up next for the Phillies: The Phillies host the Tigers at 1:05 p.m. ET on Tuesday at Bright House Field in a game being shown on MLB.TV. Left-hander Cole Hamels (3.18 ERA in the Grapefruit League) makes his third start. He will continue to work on his cutter and curveball, which he plans to use during the season. Ryan Madson, Antonio Bastardo and Danys Baez also are scheduled to pitch. Bastardo is trying to win a job in the bullpen.

Up next for the Pirates: The Pirates will enjoy the first of two spring off-days on Tuesday before returning to Grapefruit League action on Wednesday when they host the Tigers at 1:05 p.m. Kevin Hart will make the start, and it will be a critical one for the right-hander. Hart, who is competing for the fifth rotation spot, has struggled in his first two starts and really needs to make an impression with Opening Day less than three weeks away.

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