Worrell Likes How First Rehab Goes

In his first trip to a mound since very early in May, Tim Worrell was happy with the results. Worrell threw 1 1/3 innings for the Lakewood BlueClaws as he works his way back into shape to return to the Phillies in a couple of weeks.

Tim Worrell made his first in what will be a series of rehab starts for the Lakewood BlueClaws and looked sharp, pitching an inning and a third. He allowed only one hit and struck out two while throwing eighteen pitches, fourteen for strikes.

The right-hander said he threw mainly fastballs with a few sliders mixed in. He didn't throw any change-ups and said he will make at least two more appearances with Lakewood before returning to the Phils July 4th when the team is in Pittsburgh to begin a four game series with the Pirates.

Worrell was pleased with how he threw overall and said that he may have pressed in his final few outings before leaving the Phillies. Worrell refused to discuss specifics of his situation but it is believed to be more substantial than widespread claims of his not being able to handle the booing he received during his early season struggles.

"I've always been able to check my troubles at the door and go play, but with this I wasn't able to do that. I wasn't thinking about it on the mound, but it was definitely there and affecting how I performed." said Worrell.

Worrell, who lives in Cherry Hill, was accompanied by his young son which may be the most telling sign of all that he is on the mend from whatever psychological issues he may have been suffering from.

The veteran reliever said he had excellent command of his fastball and that he expects to have a higher pitch count in his next outing on Thursday.

"I could basically put my fastball where I wanted tonight." said the Phillies reliever.

Hagerstown 8, Lakewood 5
The Lakewood BlueClaws lost to the Hagerstown Suns 8-5 in the opener of the second half of the South Atlantic League season in front of 6,138 fans at FirstEnergy Park.

J.A. Happ (4-3) came on behind Worrell and allowed six runs in four innings, for what was unquestionable his worst outing all year for Lakewood. Josh Paddock and Kyle Allen came on behind and allowed one run each behind Happ to put the Lakewood offense in an eight run hole. Rafael Cova got the win for Hagerstown, improving to 4-2 on the season while allowing four runs in five innings. Carlos Muniz nailed down his fourteenth save by pitching a perfect ninth for the Suns.

Ryan Frith, one of three BlueClaws who will take part in next week's South Atlantic All-Star Game, scored the BlueClaws first run in the second on a single to left by Jesus Merchan to make give Lakewood an early 1-0 lead.

Hagerstown came right back to take a 2-1 lead in the third. The Suns offense was helped by back-to-back walks to lead off the inning and both walks eventually scored to put the BlueClaws in a hole. The walks were part of five allowed by Lakewood pitching on the evening.

The BlueClaw offense mounted their only other significant offensive challenge in the fourth when Jason Jaramillo hit a solo homerun to right to lead off the inning and Ryan Frith walked two batters later. Sean Gamble followed with a single to center and Jesus Merchan doubled to left-center and Frith and Gamble scored to make it 5-4 at the time.

That was as close at Lakewood would come though as Hagerstown put up runs in every successive inning except the ninth to win going away.

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