Cole Hamels returned to the form that he seems to have against every team in the league except the Mets. Today’s eight inning, three hit, ten strikeout performance came on the heels of another drubbing by the extremely average Mets. There really is no way to explain away how the Mets have handled Cole this year, let us all just take solace in the fact that there is no way in hell that the Mets will make the playoffs.
Pitching against the team from his birthplace seems to bring out the best in Hamels and he continued to dominate the hitting starved Padres. San Diego did not have a base runner until the top of the fourth inning and Hamels struck out seven of the first nine batters he faced. The only blemish on his outing was a run scored by Cameron Maybin in the top of the fifth inning. With the victory, Hamels moved into a tie with Braves pitcher Jair Jurrjens for the National League lead in victories. God I hate the Braves.
The offense did just enough to make sure that Cole’s effort wasn’t wasted. They scored a run in the second on some uncharacteristically poor Padres defense capitalizing on an error by Jason Bartlett and a double that probably should have been tracked down by Cameron Maybin. The Phils added another run on a balk call and their third and final run on an RBI double from John Mayberry Jr.
The real story of the game was Hamels as he reminded us that he is the best left handed pitcher in the National League. In addition Ryan Madson made a successful return to the closers role. He recorded a perfect ninth inning to record his sixteenth save of the season and handing the Phillies a 3-1 victory. Apparently, Charlie Manuel prefers Raul Ibanez to Ben Francisco for late inning defense. Ibanez is forty and really slow. Ben Francisco should probably retire.
Kyle Kendrick pitches tomorrow. Hopefully the Padres bats are inept enough to get him his sixth win of the year. He is opposed by Mat Latos, who has struggled since his excellent rookie season. See you at 4:10. That is just a turn of phrase, I will punch you in the face if you actually show up at my house. Seriously, I am talking to you.