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Zack Wheeler scratched from first spring start due to weather


Zack Wheeler will not pitch in Saturday’s Grapefruit League game against the Blue Jays due to impending inclement weather in Dunedin, according to Alex Coffey of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Instead, Wheeler will pitch in an intrasquad game in Clearwater against Single-A hitters.

Zack Wheeler will not pitch in the Grapefruit League this year. (Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire)

Wheeler was expected to throw two innings against Toronto on Saturday, but the Phillies preferred to play it safe and make sure Wheeler gets his work in without the interruption of a potential rain delay. Non-roster invitee Andrew Bellatti will replace Wheeler in Saturday’s game.

The Phillies right hander will likely stay back in Clearwater when the team heads north on Thursday so he can get one more simulated outing in before the beginning of the regular season. He’s lined up to make his first start of the season on April 12 against the New York Mets. It’s not ideal that Wheeler will head into the season without facing major league hitters in a game environment, but it’s also not the end of the world. His first outing is likely to be abbreviated with one of either Bailey Falter, Nick Nelson or Cristopher Sánchez coming in for multiple innings.

Here’s how the Phillies line up for Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays:

  1. Kyle Schwarber, left field
  2. J.T. Realmuto, catcher
  3. Bryce Harper, right field
  4. Nick Castellanos, designated hitter
  5. Didi Gregorius, shortstop
  6. Jean Segura, second base
  7. Alec Bohm, first base
  8. Johan Camargo, third base
  9. Matt Vierling, center field

Starting Pitcher: Andrew Bellatti

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