Ryne Sandberg is not known for being the master of quips, but he did get off a pretty good one after Cole Hamels picked up his fourth win of the season in a tight 2-1 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Saturday night. “He wanted run support, we’ll give him run support,” the Phillies' manager said with a laugh. The Phillies are known for leaving well-pitched games by Hamels on the table because they don’t score consistently for the 30-year-old left-hander. This was another occasion when the Phils didn’t score much behind Hamels. (Or much behind anyone for that matter. The Phils have scored two or fewer runs in 35 of their 97 games, a big reason they are 11 games under .500.) They left 10 men on base and did not score until the seventh inning when Jimmy Rollins drove a two-run homer into the right-field seats with Grady Sizemore (three hits and a walk) on base. Those two runs were enough thanks to Hamels and relievers Ken Giles and Jonathan Papelbon, who combined on the final six outs. Paplebon recorded his 23rd save on five pitches. “Cole was filthy,” Rollins raved after the game. “Watching him I was thinking, ‘This guy might throw a no-hitter. We can’t let him lose this game. That wouldn’t be right.’" By his own estimation, Hamels had his best stuff of the season. He has been trying to sink (two-seam) his fastball more lately and the movement on that pitch was excellent. He also had a good curveball and cutter. That mix was so good that he didn’t have to use his bread-and-butter changeup all that much. “When you’re getting ahead and getting them out and you don’t even have to go to your best pitch, the confidence just builds from there,” Hamels said. Hamels did not allow a hit until Tommy La Stella doubled to the gap in left-center with two outs in the fifth inning. Hamels took a two-hit shutout into the seventh before allowing a pair of hits and a run. He exited after that inning. In all, he gave up just four hits, walked none and struck out nine.
Two runs enough for 'filthy' Hamels in Phils' win over Braves
CSN Philly | Jul 20