Cole Hamels (10-9) took a no-hitter into the sixth, allowing a run over eight, as the Phillies sat back and let a 4-2 victory fall into their lap to put the finishing touches on a 15-3 season series against the lowly Nationals.
Beerleaguer: Not to be taken as a complaint because a win is a win, but I'm ready for the Phils to be tested in a more meaningful way, whether it's the postseason or against a team with something on the line, even pride. The Nats and Mets are brutal clubs dogging it toward the finish, and with the September cavalry called up from the minors, lacking the fundamentals necessary to compete. That said, Hamels had terrific command of his fastball, setting up that golden change. The thing I liked best was that he beared down when the game started to unravel in the seventh. We've seen Hamels fall apart in those situations many times this season. Meanwhile, I don't know what to make of the offense. Perhaps it's the quality of the opponent, knowing the Nats would hand it to them eventually, or the fact they're maintaining a commanding lead, but the Phils appear to be gliding on autopilot. Nevertheless, the home fans didn't seem to notice; the atmosphere resembled that of a playoff setting.
In other news, Chan Ho Park was examined and will miss two-to-three weeks, according to reports. He'll begin a rehab program in Clearwater. ... Brad Lidge pitched the ninth, allowed the run, but converted the save, his 30th.