In an otherwise depressing year, Phillies fans have a reason to celebrate on Labor Day. The celebration can be accredited to the four no-hitter of the season. However, there was not one pitcher that accomplished the feat. Instead it was a team effort that honestly was a bit confusing.
Cole Hamels went six innings while striking out seven and walking five. At that point, with a no-hitter intact, he was pulled. While this is clearly not something considered ordinary it did prove to be the correct decision. Phillies manager, Ryan Sandberg, spoke with Hamels before pulling him and the conversation revolved around the workload Hamels was under through six innings.
According to Sandberg, “It didn’t take long. He was pretty well spent there. The early innings had something to do with it. The stressful innings, stranding the runners at second and third a couple of times, but he wasn’t going to go nine. And he ran the bases the inning before.”
The group of Jake Diekman, Ken Giles and Jonathan Papelbon each pitched one perfect inning to secure the 11th combined no-hitter in Major League Baseball history and the first in the history of the franchise. Hamels saw his record improve to 8-6 in what is otherwise a poor season for the boys from Philadelphia. When Hamels was asked to comment after the game he was the consummate professional.
According to Hamels, “I think having a combined no-hitter is very difficult because guys have to come right in and get the guys out, no matter what the situation is. It’s a little more dramatic to be able to see that you’re trying to play the cards as best you can against the lineup.”