Cole Hamels was suspended five games for admitting to hitting Bryce Harper with a pitch intentionally Sunday night.
Beerleaguer: Animals. And those are just the people tweeting about it all day. Call me an old-fashioned cromag, but Hamels did everything by the book except the most important part: he didn't keep his mouth shut about it. If you subscribe to baseball's macho credo, you'll understand why plunking Harper was the right move, and it was incumbent upon the reigning division champs, and a veteran like Hamels, to do it, right then and there. It doesn't have the same meaning if, say, Dillon Gee does it. It's neanderthal. I get it. But somebody needed to welcome a brash, young punk like Harper to the bigs with a fastball to the rear end. Unfortunately, this should have became a non-issue the moment Jordan Zimmerman plunked Hamels with a retaliatory pitch. Each party moved on, Hamels pitched a great game, Harper took it to the Phils, and when the subject was raised afterward, Hamels should have kept quiet. Meanwhile, Harper, to his credit, handled the situation gracefully: he didn't say a word and was complimentary toward the Phillies. Nationals GM Mike Rizzo? Not so much. All the suspension means is that Hamels' start against San Diego gets pushed to Sunday and he has to cut Major League Baseball a check.
Notes: Tonight begins an eight-game homestand in which the Phillies can hopefully gain back some ground against some weaker teams. Roy Halladay (3-2, 3.40) tries to rebound from one of his worst starts as a Phillie. Jon Niese (2-1, 4.08) goes for the Mets. Lineup: Rollins SS, AAAberry LF, Victorino CF, Pence RF, Wigginton 1B, Ruiz C, Polanco 3B, Galvis 2B, Halladay P.