Lidge Continues Rehab in Lakewood

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, July 08, 2011 10:00 AM | Comments: 5
Blueclaws, Injuries, Minor Leagues, News, Posts

On Thursday night, Brad Lidge appeared in his second game this week for the Phillies Class A affiliate, the Lakewood BlueClaws. On a rehab assignment, Lidge started the game, throwing 13 pitches (6 fastballs, 7 sliders) and striking out two Kannapolis Intimidators batters in a perfect inning of work.

Previously, on Monday, Lidge tossed a scoreless frame against the Hagerstown Suns, while surrendering two hits.

The outings in Lakewood have been quick.  Lidge’s road back to the Citizens Bank Park mound has not been, however. The 34-year-old former All-star closer has been sidelined with injuries since spring training. After initially working his way back from a rotator cuff strain, Lidge began experiencing elbow discomfort while pitching with the Phillies’ extended spring training team at the end of May.

The right-handed Lidge was clear about needing at least a few more rehab outings, but he is not sure when he could be activated by the Phillies. Lidge says that the way his fastball velocity progresses will help to determine how soon he could get back to big league action.

“We’ll take a look where my fastball’s at in my next outing or two. That’ll be a pretty good indicator,” Lidge said. “I know that when this process started, (the Phillies) said seven to ten outings. I’m hoping it’s on the shorter side of that.”

Lidge is slated to return to action with the BlueClaws on Saturday, in a relief role. What comes after that is not yet determined, but Lidge is happy, as long as he is pitching without setbacks.

“Every time I go out, I want to progress. I know it won’t be an exact straight line up, but tonight I felt real good about my control, about my slider. I want to keep working on my fastball. I know I have some work to do on that yet, but being out there to work on it is a great thing for me right now.”

The digital board designated to display pitch speed at Lakewood’s FirstEnergy Park has not been functional during either of Lidge’s innings this week, but Lidge’s fastball has been reported to range from 86-88 MPH in the two outings.

Having spent time on the disabled list in each of his four season with the Phillies, Lidge knows there are improvements to make and anticipates an additional velocity jump upon his return Philadelphia, thanks to the adrenaline that comes with pitching there.

“I’d like to get (my fastball) back up to somewhere around 90, 91 maybe. I think last year when I started a few rehab games, I started around 87 and every outing it seemed to go up about a mile an hour until somewhere to around 90, 91 then I got back in Philly then it magically jumps up two (more) miles an hour when you get out there in those situations.”

Despite knowing what it will take to make it back to the active roster, and be a contributor for a potentially postseason bound team, Lidge remains anxious.

“It’s gonna be very hard to be patient for that, though because I’ve been out a long time and I want to get back as soon as I can.”


Jay Floyd is PhilliesNation’s minor league insider. You can read more from Jay by visiting his site, PhoulBallz.com.

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About Jay Floyd

Jay Floyd has written 702 articles on Phillies Nation.

Jay Floyd is PhilliesNation's minor league insider. You can read more from Jay by visiting his site, PhoulBallz.com.

  • Posts: 220 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    Brad Lidge Rehab? Yawn.

  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    I think the Phillies are finally getting it right re:Lidge. A slow, long rehab that minimizes chances of re-injury and builds up arm strength for the second half of the season/playoffs. Lidge can be flat out nasty when he’s healthy. I hope they continue to take it slow with him. We don’t need him now, but we may need him later.

  • Posts: 0 Brian Michael

    What role would he play on the big league team? Would there be a closer by committee setup or would he just be a setup guy?

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    I think the closer job belongs to Madson. Even Lidge himself said it will be silly for the Phils to take that away from Madson. I wont get too excited on Lidge returns just yet. Not after he throws a few more innings an we can be somewhat assured he wont have another set back.
    I would imagine upon his arrival Cholly will probably use him in low pressure situations. Then again this is Cholly he doesnt follow normal standard procedures. I will have to assume he will be an eight or 7th inning guy with a lead at least at first. Hopefully he can contribute something here an can regain reasonable form.

  • Posts: 325 Jay Floyd

    Avatar of Jay Floyd

    For those wondering, Lidge’s slider looked great in Lakewood. I stood behind the catcher Rupp a bit while Lidge was warming up pregame, and just seeing it from that angle and so close really gave me an appreciation for his slider.

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