Monday, August 3, 2015

Hamels Remains Luckless, Winless

Cole Hamels can't catch a break. Phillies hitters can't get a big hit. That's a bad combination.

Hamels Remains Luckless, Winless

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Ryan Howard and the Phillies continue to struggle offensively, and Cole Hamels pays the price.
Ryan Howard and the Phillies continue to struggle offensively, and Cole Hamels pays the price. GUS RUELAS / Associated Press

Cole Hamels should stay away from AC and Vegas until further notice.

His luck is terrible right now.

He allowed five hits, two runs and two walks in last night's 4-3 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. He left with a lead, but Chad Durbin allowed a run in the eighth to tie the game and J.C. Romero allowed the game-winning run to score in the ninth. Hamels is winless since July 3, when he allowed a run in 8 2/3 innings against the Braves in Atlanta. Since then he is 0-3 with a 3.60 ERA in seven starts.

Feel like tearing your hair out, Cole?

"No," Hamels said. "I think that was probably about three weeks ago. I think I've learned to overcome. I can't affect that sort of outcome. All I know is that I can go out there and throw one pitch at a time. Wherever they hit it, so be it. Just try to limit the runs. I felt I definitely did a good job of it. I had the tough sixth inning. I had to bear down and I wasn't able to get Manny out."

The Dodgers had runners on first and second with one out in the sixth, when Manny Ramirez, who has been a huge hit in LA since he joined the Dodgers, singled to center to score a run. Hamels threw his first four pitches inside then worked him away before Ramirez took the sixth pitch of the at-bat to center field.

"I think when I was in Philly I was able to get him," Hamels said. "I wasn't able to get my foot down in time where I was able to get that control I needed. I couldn't get that last pitch in there where I wanted it."

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Romero on the pitch that Andre Ethier hit to left field to score the winning run in the ninth: "In different circumstances he would have rolled over on it. He stayed through it and hit a jam shot over the shortstop. What am I going to do? Sometimes you need a little luck."

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But while it might be easy to pick apart the eighth and ninth innings, the Phillies had just one hit after the third inning. It seems like that's been happening a lot over the last two months.

Especially to Hamels. He has been a victim of poor run support throughout the season. He entered last night ranked 51st out of 60 pitchers in the National League in run support, receiving just 4.27 runs per game. The Phillies have been shutout three times when Hamels has been on the mound: a 1-0 loss to the Washington Nationals on April 2, a 2-0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on July 8 and a 3-0 loss to the Florida Marlins last Thursday.

"It all evens out," Pat Burrell said. "If he keeps pitching the way he's doing we're going to score some runs. It's unfortunate because he's had tough luck."

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In the Phillies Notebook: Tom Gordon, Brad Lidge, Pedro Feliz and more.

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Immediately got a few e-mails from fans about So Taguchi being in left field instead of Burrell. Taguchi's throw to the plate arrived late. Understand the frustration, but we're really not going to blame the loss on Taguchi's arm are we? Again, the Phillies had one hit after the third inning.

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Chase Utley hit his 30th homer of the season in the first inning. He became the sixth player in franchise history to have 30 doubles and 30 homers in the same season at least twice. He joined Chuck Klein (four times), Mike Schmidt (three times), Greg Luzinski (three times), Del Ennis (twice) and Bobby Abreu (twice).

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Shane Victorino doesn't think his lower back stiffness is serious. Read the previous post for what he had to say.

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