Sign in to comment!

Menu
Home

Baseball

Hamels hurt by HRs in Phillies' 5-2 loss to Braves

Cole Hamels had the stuff to go the distance again. The scoreboard wouldn't let him.

Jair Jurrjens pitched neatly into the seventh inning, Freddie Freeman, Alex Gonzalez and Eric Hinske homered, and the Atlanta Braves beat the Philadelphia Phillies 5-2 on Sunday night.

Hamels (4-2) gave up three runs and five hits, striking out nine in seven innings. Coming off a complete-game win over Washington, he could've finished this one, too — if he had a lead. The left-hander threw 92 pitches before being removed for a pinch hitter.

"Sometimes you make the right pitches, but they don't go in the right area and the guy gets a hit or the ball goes further than you anticipate," Hamels said.

Jurrjens (4-0) allowed one run and eight hits in 6 1-3 innings to outduel Hamels. Jurrjens hasn't allowed more than two earned runs in any start, and has a 1.50 ERA.

"This is the team we want to beat," he said. "It's always exciting to go against the best and one of their aces."

Jonny Venters pitched out of trouble after allowing a run in the eighth and Craig Kimbrel tossed a scoreless ninth for his eighth save in 10 tries. Kimbrel allowed a single and a walk with one out before striking out Shane Victorino looking and retiring Placido Polanco on a shallow fly to center.

"We hit some balls good, but we couldn't do anything with guys on base," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.

The Braves have won nine of 12. They head home for eight games, including a three-game series against Philadelphia next weekend.

The NL East-leading Phillies lost just their third series of the season and remained tied with Cleveland for the best record in the majors. They'll hit the road for eight games, starting at second-place Florida on Monday.

On a Mother's Day when many players around the majors wore pink wristbands and pink necklaces and used pink bats to show their support for the fight against breast cancer, Freeman was the only starter for either team wearing pink spikes. The 21-year-old first baseman, who was 10 when his mother died of melanoma, finished 3 for 4.

"I think about her every day, but a little more today," Freeman said. "I hope she's proud. I wore all the pink I could — necklace, wristband and spikes."

He may want to stick with those shoes.

Freeman led off the fifth with a solo shot to right to give the Braves a 3-1 lead. Hamels had allowed just two homers all season before the Braves connected twice.

"I threw a pitch where I wanted to and he just hit it out," Hamels said. "He's a great hitter. He's here for a reason."

Freeman started a two-out rally in the second with a single. Gonzalez then drove a 2-1 pitch into the seats in left for a 2-0 lead. He later left the game with a slight groin strain and is day-to-day.

Hinske, pinch-hitting for reliever Eric O'Flaherty, connected off Michael Stutes to make it 5-1 in the eighth. Hinske struck out against Brad Lidge for the final out of the 2008 World Series, clinching Philadelphia's win over Tampa Bay.

The Phillies cut it to 2-1 in the third. Jimmy Rollins singled and scored on Polanco's two-out single to center.

Victorino tripled and scored on Polanco's infield single in the eighth to get Philadelphia within 5-2. Venters retired pinch-hitter John Mayberry Jr. on a fly to center with two runners on to end the inning.

Jurrjens pitched out of a first-and-third, one-out jam in the sixth by getting Wilson Valdez to ground into a double play.

NOTES: Phillies C Carlos Ruiz was placed on the disabled list with lower back inflammation. The move is retroactive to April 28. ... Victorino extended his hitting streak to 11 games. ... A crowd of 45,619 was the 156th straight sellout at Citizens Bank Park, including postseason play. ... Polanco has reached safely in 25 straight and 32 of Philadelphia's 33 games. ... Hamels has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 11 of his last 12 starts against Atlanta.