Phillies setup man Ken Giles, who made his first appearance Saturday since suffering a mildly strained back Tuesday, has been proclaimed ready to go on opening day.
Giles threw only 17 pitches to four batters in the Phillies' 6-4 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citizens Bank Park. He recorded just one out and allowed two doubles and a walk before being lifted.
He left the game after serving up a two-run double to Corey Hart, but manager Ryne Sandberg said Giles was removed because he was supposed to throw only 15 to 20 pitches.
"He felt fine and actually had his best fastball, at 96 [m.p.h.], of the spring, and he passed the test and felt good about it," Sandberg said.
Sandberg added that he would have no hesitation using Giles in Monday's home opener against the Boston Red Sox.
Known for his 100-m.p.h. fastball, Giles threw mainly in the 94-m.p.h. range Saturday. Giles said there was no concern about the performance.
"I just wanted to go out there and get on a mound before opening day and just make sure nothing was grabbing, no sharp pains, and I didn't care what the outcome was," Giles said. "I needed to make sure I felt good and I was ready to go."
He said there was no pain and no doubt about his availability for the opener.
"Overall I feel fine," he said. "I am ready to go Monday."