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News » Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-29


Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-29


Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-29
Cole Hamels had to laugh.

Five days earlier, the Phillies ace walked off the mound at Citizens Bank Park in the fourth inning after being hit in the left shoulder by a line drive. And there he was Tuesday night, having cruised through four innings, rolling his left ankle and awkwardly falling to the ground while trying to field a bunt by Nationals pitcher John Lannan.

Hamels left the game, and after X-rays came back negative, he was diagnosed with a sprained ankle.

"It's one of those things where some random things happen," said Hamels, his ankle lightly wrapped after the Phillies routed the lowly Nationals 7-1 for their fifth consecutive win. "It was almost comedy. I don't know what else to do but laugh about it because nothing's been too serious. This ankle injury, it's not severe. We'll have to see how it feels, but I'm not planning to miss a start."

It helps that the Phillies are idle Thursday, giving Hamels a sixth day before his next start. He isn't scheduled to throw a between-starts bullpen session until Friday, and if his sprained ankle on his back (push-off) leg doesn't worsen, he will start Monday night in St. Louis.

For 4 1/3 innings against the Nationals, Hamels sailed. He allowed just four hits, two walks and zero runners to advance beyond second base. He was not his sharpest, but after missing a week in spring training with elbow stiffness and struggling with his velocity and command, he finally resembled the dominant ace who was named World Series MVP last fall.

And then this.

"I was like, what's next?" center fielder Shane Victorino said. "Poor guy."

The Phillies (11-8) were leading 6-0 when Lannan dropped the bunt. Hamels said his cleat stuck in the turf and his legs got twisted. When he hit the ground, he flipped the ball in the air, pounded his fist into the ground and slowly got to his feet.

After unleashing one warm-up pitch, Hamels flipped the ball again and walked away.

"I was trying to flip it to (manager) Charlie (Manuel), and it didn't quite get there," Hamels said. "I don't think the words I said should be written down. It was a situation where I rolled it a little too far, and I wasn't able to put as much pressure on it. I didn't feel like I was going to be effective."

PHILLIES 7, NATIONALS 1: Chase Utley belted two home runs to lift the Phillies to a rout of the last-place Nationals before a sellout crowd of 43,930 at Citizens Bank Park. Pedro Feliz hit a three-run homer, and Raul Ibanez hit a solo shot to lead the Philadelphia offense. Shane Victorino went 2-for-4 and has hit safely in nine straight games (14-for-38, 10 RBIs during the streak). Cole Hamels left the game in the fifth inning with a sprained left ankle and was replaced by reliever Chad Durbin, who allowed only a homer to Adam Dunn in 3 2/3 innings.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 29, 2009

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