Through two games, Halladay has a 14.73 ERA in 7 1/3 innings after allowing 12 earned runs and three home runs. Halladay’s strikeout totals are high (12), but so are his walks (six) and WHIP (2.455). Halladay hasn’t struggled this much since he was a 23-year-old Toronto Blue Jay in 2000, when he had a 10.64 ERA before being sent back down to the minors to readjust.
“I would say 95 percent is mental,” Halladay told Philly.com. “It’s simplifying. It’s getting to the basics. It’s letting things happen and trying to force things. It’s a game of failure, and I’ve had my fair share. Some days you’re a horse, and some days you’re a horse’s ass, and I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while. It’s something that I’ve dealt a lot with in the past and I feel like I can overcome. The more you want it, the harder it is. You almost have to really back that off and put some perspective in the whole thing.”
Halladay struggled at the end of the 2012 season as well. He had a 3.98 ERA in his first 11 games and 4.93 through the final 14. That came after a 2011 season where he finished second in NL Cy Young voting after putting together a 19-win, 2.35 ERA, 220-strikeout campaign.
Halladay’s velocity has been trending down for two years now. His two-seam fastball is averaging 89.9 miles per hour this season after it was 90.5 last year, according to Fangraphs.com. His career average fastball is 92.2 miles per hour.