PHOENIX -- More than a month into the new season, Phillies reliever Phillippe Aumont boasts a 2.45 ERA, a number few would gripe about. But in his 11 innings, the right-hander has already walked 10 batters.
To his credit, Aumont has worked out of trouble relatively well thanks to his 12 strikeouts, but Phillies manager Charlie Manuel would like to see the 24-year-old stay in the strike zone more.
"I look at him, and when you think about it, he's everything you want to see in a pitcher. He's big, he's strong, he throws 93-98, his ball sinks, things like that," Manuel said. "But he has trouble commanding his pitches. He has trouble staying focused on the mound and getting through clean innings.
Aumont, who has already taken losses in three games this year, has only allowed an earned run in one outing, when he surrendered three runs to Pittsburgh back on April 25. In the other two losses, Aumont was done in by walks and errors committed by his defense.
Mayberry Jr. gets start over Young vs. Kennedy
PHOENIX -- Using previous results as reference, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel gave John Mayberry Jr. his first start since Monday and left Delmon Young out of the lineup Friday against D-backs ace Ian Kennedy.
In five career at-bats against the Arizona right-hander before Friday, Mayberry had three hits, including a homer and a double. Manuel hopes the favorable matchup for the outfielder will get him back on track, as the 29-year-old is just 2-for-15 in May.
"I was looking for somebody that can hit him," Manuel said. "He's the only one that has red on my chart, so I figured I might as well stick him in there."
The move didn't work out as planned, with Mayberry going 0-for-3 against Kennedy in the 3-2 loss. The outfielder did manage to collect a single in the ninth off David Hernandez.
Friday marked just the second time since making his season debut that Young wasn't in the Phillies' lineup. The 27-year-old snapped a four-game hitless streak on Thursday by collecting a pair of singles off D-backs pitching.
Cloyd optioned to Triple-A after strong debut
PHOENIX -- Minutes after turning in an impressive season debut Friday against the D-backs, Tyler Cloyd was optioned to Triple-A Lehigh Valley following the Phillies' 3-2 loss.
With two off days coming in the next six days, Philadelphia will go with a four-man rotation until the club needs a fifth starter again on May 21 vs. the Marlins.
"They don't need a starter for a while, might as well go down there and keep pitching well," Cloyd said. "Hopefully, the next opportunity they have, I can come back up and do well."
Cloyd worked 6 1/3 innings Friday, allowing two runs on two hits while striking out four.
In his place, the Phillies called up Justin De Fratus for an extra arm in the bullpen. The right-hander, who will be in Arizona on Saturday, has a 1.89 ERA in 19 innings with Lehigh Valley this season.
• After the Phillies complete their four-game series with the D-backs over the weekend, the club will then have two of the next four days off, a luxury that could allow manager Charlie Manuel to tinker with the starting rotation. As of Friday, the skipper said the club hadn't thought that far ahead yet.
"We don't know yet, we haven't talked about it," Manuel said. "I don't know what kind of flexibility we have. We'll probably talk about it but we're trying to get through tonight."
• Phillies pinch-hitters are batting .305 so far this season, best in the National League. Laynce Nix leads the way for the club with seven hits in 16 pinch-hit at-bats.
Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.