The Phillies were in serious need of a win last night after dropping the first two games of the series with the Nationals. And they had exactly the man on the mound who could get the job done.
Through eight innings, Cole Hamels allowed only one run on five hits. He also showed his team he wasn’t afraid to get his delicate hands dirty by drilling rookie Bryce Harper with a pitch in the 1st inning. After the game, Hamels told the media, “I was trying to hit him.” Hamels was not looking to injure, but the message was sent.
Of course, Harper sent a message of his own by stealing home that same inning, which was the only run the Nats would score. Then Hamels was hit with a pitch in his first at-bat in retaliation, which Hamels fully expected.
In addition to the hit by pitch, Hamels also earned a walk and a single in the game, doing damage at the plate as well as from the mound. He could be seen in the dugout between innings laughing and joking with teammates.
The lighter mood finally rubbed off on his teammates who scored 3 runs in the 4th and then exploded with 6 runs in the 9th. Placido Polanco lead the team with 3 hits and Hunter Pence collected 4 RBI on 2 home runs, finally showing some power.
The Nats “Take back the Park” campaign wound up being a big joke. Phillies fans still showed up in droves. At least in the final game, they were rewarded for their efforts.
Another downer for the Nats was watching ex-Phillie Jayson Werth go down with a broken wrist in last night’s game. It is the same wrist that Werth injured back in 2005 that almost ended his career. Werth will be out for at least 6 weeks and miss the May 21-23 rematch with the Phils.
The Mets are up next, starting tonight at 7:05pm in Philly. Welcome home, Phils!
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Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography