CLEARWATER, Fla. - Jesse Biddle tried to establish his fastball in the seventh inning of Saturday's Grapefruit League game. The problem was he left it up in the zone.
Perhaps, the lefthander from Germantown Friends suggested, he was a bit too amped up for his first outing of the spring. The Phillies' former first-round pick is preparing for a pivotal season after a struggle-filled 2014.
"I've been doing a really good job in bullpens and live [batting practice] and throwing really well, so I'm not going to let this outweigh everything else I've been doing," he said after allowing two runs on three hits in his inning of work against the Toronto Blue Jays.
"I'm not going to let it affect my confidence. It's all right. It happens."
Biddle, 23, gave up consecutive doubles to start the frame. He caught Steve Tolleson looking at a curveball but then walked Josh Thole on four pitches.
"It's a little frustrating to give up runs. You never want to do that," Biddle said. "But it's just my first time out. I'm not putting too much weight into it. I'm putting a lot more weight into how I felt, and I thought the ball was coming out good."
Righthander Aaron Harang said he "felt good" Saturday, the day after he threw a bullpen session. The veteran expects to start Monday against the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota.
Harang missed Wednesday's start for what he earlier in the week deemed "maintenance," though pitching coach Bob McClure indicated precautions were taken "from a health standpoint." Harang recently saw a chiropractor to get his back realigned but said that's a visit he makes each spring.
Lefthander Adam Morgan is also scheduled to pitch Monday. His Friday appearance was scratched because of a 50-minute rain delay that began after he warmed up.
Righthander Kevin Slowey is slated to start for the Phillies Sunday against the Tampa Bay Rays. . . . Outfielder Kelly Dugan was optioned to minor-league camp, bringing the Phillies to 59 players in big-league spring training.