Cole Hamels was in complete control against his hometown team, tossing eight strong innings as the Phillies posted their second straight shutout and fifth of the season, 2-0, against the Padres on Friday night.
Hamels was brilliant for the third straight game since struggling in his season debut. The lefty had his entire repetoire working, including an improving curveball and his usual display of nasty changeups. He finished having allowed four hits and three walks (one intentional). He stuck out eight batters as part of a season-high 126-pitch effort.
Jose Contreras had the night off, meaning Ryan Madson was in charge of the ninth. Madson came through with a 1-2-3 inning that included a vintage play from Jimmy Rollins deep in the hole at shortstop. The win gave the Phils five shutouts in their first 19 games for the first time since 1913.
The Phillies' offense remained quiet, scoring four runs or fewer for the 11th straight game. Their lone runs came in the third inning, when Shane Victorino and Placido Polanco walked with one out. Following a flyout by Rollins - who went 0-for-3 and is now in a 2-for-25 slump - Ryan Howard laced a two-run triple into the right-center field gap.
Next up: Joe Blanton takes the mound Saturday night against Tim Stauffer in the third game of the four-game series.
-Written for Beerleaguer by Drew Silverman