Tigers 1

(7-7, 2-4 away)

Phillies 6

(7-4, 4-1 home)

    1:05 PM ET, March 16, 2010

    Bright House Networks, Clearwater, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    DET 001000000 1 - -
    PHI 01041000 - 6 - -

    Phillies 6, Tigers 1

    Associated Press

    CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Ryan Howard hit his first home run of the spring and highly touted Domonic Brown connected twice, leading Cole Hamels and the Philadelphia Phillies over the Detroit Tigers 6-1 Tuesday.

    Hamels held the Tigers to an unearned run and two hits in five innings. He struck out four and walked none.

    Howard launched a two-run drive off Justin Verlander. Brown also connected against the Tigers ace and finished 3 for 3 with a walk and four RBIs.

    "I'm kind of speechless," Brown said. "I'm just trying to go out there and play hard and let the rest take care of itself."

    "When you have a good at-bat against an ace, that does good things for you," Howard said of Brown's home run off Verlander. "I think he's going to start to see that he can play at this level."

    Brown, considered among baseball's best prospects, was reassigned to the minor league camp after the game.

    "He hit his way right out of here," manager Charlie Manuel said with a smile.

    The 22-year-old outfielder played at three levels last year and finished the season in Double-A.

    "I thought I was going down last week, so this all is a plus for me," Brown said.

    Brown, who has played just 37 games above Class A, will most likely start the season at Double-A Reading.

    Howard said he had a similar experience as a 23-year-old in 2003, when he hit a home run off Andy Pettitte in a spring training "B" game.

    "I remember it was a cutter away, the first pitch," Howard said. "Facing someone who is established in the big leagues, I think it kind of tells you where you're at, it's kind of a measuring stick."

    With the bases loaded and two outs in the fifth, Brown legged out an infield single to knock in his fourth run of the day.

    "The kid has tremendous eye-hand coordination," Manuel said. "He's going to be a good player. He's good right now. He's going to get better."

    Brown's big day wasn't the only encouraging development for the defending National League champions.

    Hamels, who struggled to find consistency throughout the 2009 season, used his revamped repertoire to lower his spring ERA to 1.69 after three starts.

    Hamels retired the Tigers in order in every inning but the third, when he ended up striking out Johnny Damon with two on and two out.

    "Right now, I've been comfortable throwing the four pitches I have," said Hamels, who has allowed two earned runs in 10 2/3 innings this spring. "I've come in (this spring) with more than a desire to win, to participate and help the team as much as I can. I didn't really pull my end of the bargain last year. I'm excited to go and willing to do anything I possibly can to help the team win."

    Game notes

    Philadelphia 3B Placido Polanco, who sprained his right knee Monday, is hoping to get back in the lineup Friday. Polanco said the swelling went down enough that an MRI "wasn't necessary." ... In addition to Brown, right-handed pitchers Andrew Carpenter and B.J. Rosenberg were also reassigned to minor-league camp. RHP Ryan Vogelsong was optioned to minor-league camp before the game. ... LHP J.C. Romero will face hitters for the first time since September on Wednesday. Romero, who had elbow surgery in October, is scheduled to throw batting practice.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Game Information

    StadiumBright House Networks, Clearwater, FL
    Weather59 degrees, Fair
    Wind999 mph, N
    UmpiresHome - Andy Fletcher, First Base - Dan Iassogna, Third Base - Phil Cuzzi