Hernandez perfect into 6th inning, leads Phillies
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CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) Roberto Hernandez took a perfect game into the sixth inning, Ben Revere and Domonic Brown each had two hits and the Philadelphia Phillies beat a New York Yankees split-squad 6-2 Thursday.
Hernandez, making his fourth start of the spring, was lifted after Scott Sizemore led off the sixth inning with a single to center. Hernandez struck out two and did not walk a batter.
"It felt great," Hernandez said. "I didn't try to overthrow, kept the ball down and got groundballs. That's what I want to do, keep the ball down."
Jacoby Ellsbury's solo homer off Philadelphia left-hander Jeremy Horst ended the Phillies shutout bid. The home run was Ellsbury's first of the spring.
The 33-year-old Hernandez was signed as a free agent this winter to a one-year, $4.5 million deal. He is expected to follow 2008 AL Cy Young Award winner Cliff Lee and fellow veterans A.J. Burnett and Kyle Kendrick in the Phillies rotation this season.
"That's the sharpest I had seen him," Philadelphia manager Ryne Sandberg said. "All his stuff was down and he got groundballs when he needed them."
Ivan Nova allowed three runs on nine hits in five innings for New York. He struck out six and didn't walk a batter.
"I felt good," Nova said. "The results aren't what you want, but I was feeling good, throwing strikes."
Phillies: Hernandez has a 2.03 ERA in four games this spring. He has allowed three runs while striking out nine and walking four in 13 1-3 innings.
Yankees: Nova was the victim of some tough luck in his fourth start of the spring. He allowed four straight singles to begin a three-run third inning, but two never left the infield.
"They weren't hit hard," Nova said. "If they're going to hit it, it's good to keep it on the ground. . If you get hit it's because you're throwing strikes. It's a part of the game."
Philadelphia shortstop Jimmy Rollins was out of the starting lineup for the third straight game. Prior to Thursday's game, Sandberg spoke to Rollins in regard to comments made in Tuesday's Philadelphia Daily News, when the veteran shortstop said, "Who cares?" in response to the team's offensive struggles this spring. But Sandberg said Rollins not playing was unrelated; he wanted to see 24-year-old shortstop Freddy Galvis play three straight games. Rollins is listed in Friday's starting lineup.
Phillies: Right-hander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez said his right shoulder felt "a lot better" prior to Thursday's game, but is uncertain when he'll pitch next. The 27-year-old Gonzalez, a Cuban free agent signed in August, went home on Wednesday with anterior soreness in his pitching shoulder. He first experienced the pain when he "felt a pinch" while playing long toss on Tuesday.
Updated March 13, 2014