The commentators tonight made a joke about a pitcher going a complete game and then coming out the next time without the same stuff. I usually don’t buy into that kind of thing, but Cole Hamels played into it perfectly.
The Nationals stayed patient at the plate and Livan Hernandez (7-11, 4.21) pitched into the seventh to help Washington win 4-2.
Hamels (13-7, 2.62), after going the distance in his last start against Colorado, lasted only five innings tonight giving up three runs and tying his season high with four walks with three in the first two innings. It wasn’t as if Cole pitched extremely bad tonight. From what I saw he was just off the plate at times and never missing too terribly off. His velocity on his fastball was hovering around the low 90′s all night and he had good swings and misses on his change-up.
It was only the second time Hamels gave up more than two runs in his last 16 starts. Kyle Kendrick pitched three innings in relief and has turned into a fairly adequate middle man ready to pick up the slack. He did allow one run before Brad Lidge pitched a scoreless ninth.
The Phillies are still 36 games over .500 (77-41) and have won 18 of their last 23 games.