With his pitch count topping 110, Cole Hamels was kept in the ballgame to face the heart of the Brewers lineup, setting up a left-left match-up with Prince Fielder. After Ryan Braun doubled, Prince crowned Cole’s hanging change-up over the right-field wall, leading the Brewers to a 5-4 win.
“Cholly has Romero and Durbin both rested and both guys have been really solid all year so far. Hamels did his job and Cholly should have pulled him after the 7th inning and 110 pitches. This loss is on Cholly. Hamels shouldn't have been out there in the 8th and pulling both Dobbs came back to haunt the Phils in the 9th.” – MG
"I don't buy the idea that Hamels gave up the HR simply because it was his 120th pitch, unless you also want to believe that the first homerun he gave up to Fielder in the first inning was also a result of being tired. Hamels showed *no signs* of tiring and I liked his chances in the 8th more than any of their relievers. ... The turning point was when Fielder hit one of Cole's outside fastballs hard the other way. The whole AB, they'd been pitching him away and Fielder showed he was adjusting. So they came in and it wasn't far enough in. It was a mistake. Why automatically blame that on fatigue? Did Hamels look tired when he blowing through the 7th inning at over 100 pitches? Too many times managers are automated in making moves according to that pitch count regardless of what their eyes tell them.” – RSB
“Here's the problem: Lidge is not available. Cholly was probably going to JC for the save. And he had NO other left hander to face Fielder.” – Mike Cunningham
Another ugly night for Howard: Last night’s subplot starred Ryan Howard, who's down to .181. I think you start him today against Jeff Suppan, and if he doesn't snap out of it, you sit him Friday in Pittsburgh against left-hander Zach Duke. If he really stinks, the Sunday day game is another opportunity before the off-day to give him two days to clear his head. It's frustrating to again be faced with setting aside time in April for your cleanup hitter to sort himself out, but if he figures it out like last year, you live with it.