By Sam Bush
The Phillies pitching picture is becoming clearer and clearer with each passing workout:
Aaron Nola is the 1, Zack Wheeler the 2 and Jake Arrieta the 3.
And now Vince Velasquez is looking like No. 5.
He pitched four-plus scoreless innings in a scrimmage Tuesday night, allowing two hits and one walk. He struck out six.
Velasquez entered camp competing with Nick Pivetta for the No. 5 job in the rotation. The Phillies remain high on both Velasquez and Pivetta because both have remarkable stuff.
Has Velasquez taken the lead for the No. 5 job, based on his Summer Camp performances?
“He’s looked really good,” Phillies manager Joe Girardi said. “I don’t think you could ignore what he’s doing.”
Velasquez flashed his cut fastball Tuesday. It impressed.
“I think it’s been a big pitch for him,” Girardi said. “It’s allowed him to use both sides of the plate. He got better as the game went on. I thought his curveball was good. He looked really good. He’s looked really good his last two outings.”
Wheeler faced 19 batters. The right-hander did not allow a run. He allowed three hits and three walks. He struck out two.
“I thought his stuff was really good tonight,” Girardi said.