NO-NO in Atlanta
- Updated: September 1, 2014
There’s a reason why baseball is America’s greatest game. This weekend’s Labor Day holiday marks the unofficial end of summer. For the Philadelphia Phillies, their 2014 season ended long ago for all intents and purposes. Today the Phils accomplished something for the first time in their history.
That’s what makes baseball so great. Not often, but occasionally, fans get the chance to witness something that’s never happened before and may not happen again.
Cole Hamels got the call for the Phillies, and he was superb today as he’s been all season. Though he labored a bit, pun intended, he threw six shutout innings, struck out seven and walked five. He fought out of several jams this afternoon, causing his pitch count to rise fast.
Did I mention he did not allow a hit?
Hamels did however finish the sixth inning with 108 pitches, far too many to make an attempt at a nine inning no hitter. He was lifted in the seventh for a pinch hitter.
The Phils led Atlanta 2-0 when Hamels left the game, but broke it open in the seventh. Dom Brown reached base on an error, and stole second with one out. After Ruiz grounded out, Cody Asche walked to bring up Hamels’ spot. Grady Sizemore would pinch hit, and he worked a walk to load the bases.
Ben Revere would bat next, and roped a bases clearing triple to right center-field to give the Phillies a 5-0 lead. Revere would knock in another run in the ninth inning to make it a 6-0 lead. With the bases now loaded, Ryan Howard worked a walk to force in run number seven. Revere finished with five runs batted in today.
The Phillies would turn to the bullpen to preserve the lead, shutout and no-hitter. Jake Diekman took the ball in the seventh and struck out two in a 1,2,3 inning.
Ken Giles worked the eighth, and struck out the side.
Jonathan Papelbon then took the ball in the ninth with a 7-0 lead, and completed the first combined no-hitter in 132 years of Phillies’ baseball.
Credit Hamels for working out of trouble in spots, and making it stand for six innings. The Phillies’ pen has been a strong suit all season, and they showed their true colors today. Diekman, Giles & Papelbon combined for five strikeouts & literally nothing else in 3 innings.
Ben Revere’s seventh inning triple gave the staff more breathing room and helped everyone rest easy for the rest of the game.
In a season full of frustration and angst, the Phillies gave fans something to smile about as another Autumn approaches without playoff baseball.
The Phils will look to build on this tomorrow night at 7:10 with Kyle Kendrick on the hill for the Phils. Mike Minor goes for Atlanta.
Stats Courtesy of TheScore.com
Photo Courtesy of Hubsm.com