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Monday, July 11, 2011

Game 91: Hamels continues dominance, Phils 23 games over .500 at break (57-34)

There's always a lot of talk about how good the Phillies starting rotation is. However, I'm not sure Cole Hamels gets as much credit as he should. Hamels has gone 132 innings in 19 starts this year. He's the owner of a 0.932 WHIP, 1.6 BB/9, 8.3 K/9, 2.43 FIP, 2.73 xFIP, 0.257 BABIP (perhaps he's getting a little lucky), and since May 23, has gone fewer than 7 innings just twice (once due to injury, and once he ONLY lasted 6.1 innings). Over that time he hasn't allowed more than 2 runs in any game. Sunday was no different. Hamels simply dominated the Braves lineup, and helped the Phillies cruise to the series victory.

Of course, it helped that every Phillies starting fielder reached base safely at least twice with Raul Ibanez going 2-for-5 with 6 RBIs.

Some managerial complaints? Michael Martinez batted 2nd. Utley, Howard, and Ibanez batted consecutively. Manuel let Hamels come out for the 8th inning despite being up by 9 runs. The last one is a big one. There is no reason for him to come out in the 8th. None. What happens if Alex Gonzalez (no relation to Adrian), hits a line drive back through the box and breaks Hamels' hand? I mean it's pretty unrealistic to assume Alex Gonzalez would do anything productive on a baseball field, but it's definitely possible. What if Jordan Schafer tries to drag bunt again, and Hamels rolls his ankle coming off the mound to field it. Way too many things could go wrong, and being up 10-1, it's just not worth the risk. I don't care if Hamels begged Manuel to leave him in, Manuel needs to put his foot down.

23 games over .500? I'll take it.

1 comment:

hk said...

I agree with all of your comments, especially the complaints about the dread-locked Eric Bruntlett batting 2nd and Cole Hamels pitching the 8th. Even though the risk of injury is low, there's absolutely no need to add meaningless innings pitched in a 10-1 game. It's impossible to quantify or qualify the impact that throwing unnecessary innings in June and July has on a pitcher in October.