Originally written on Phillies Nation  |  Last updated 11/16/14
3f

Cole Hamels decided the Phillies weren't going to lose tonight. (AP)

There was a baseball game in Philadelphia tonight, but it was in name only. For, you see, it was less a game than a one-man pitching showcase, headlined by Cole Hamels and his nine shutout innings. His performance willed the Phillies to a victory over the Braves, 3-0, in a game where the runs scored will become a footnote to the deft performance Hamels put on display.

HOME COOKIN’ FOR COLE

- Tonight Cole Hamels reached a career milestone, starting his 100th game at Citizens Bank Park. Incidentally, it was also the first start at home for Hamels since he signed his new $144M deal with the Phillies on July 25. The new deal meant tonight’s game was the first of many to come for Hamels in south Philadelphia. If he can pitch in all of those the way he pitched tonight, he’ll have been worth every penny of that $144M (and possible $164M). Hamels was electrifying from start to finish, throwing a complete game shutout. He’d notch six strikeouts and walk none.

- Hamels relied heavily on his fastball, sometimes throwing it five or six times in a row. The pitch hovered around 92-93 MPH, hit 94 MPH a few times, and was on the corners all night. The Braves would get just five baserunners against Hamels and none of them reached second base.

- It was a vintage performance in every way, and reaffirmed Hamels’s stature around baseball. You got a feeling early on that if the Phillies got a lead, Hamels could hold it. The victory tonight was Hamels’s first at home since June 15. He would be denied no longer. It was Hamels’s first complete game shutout of the year and the fifth of his career.

OFFENSE DOES ENOUGH

- Mike Minor hasn’t been great this season, but he did pitch very well against the Phillies last time he faced them, throwing eight innings of shutout baseball a mere ten days ago. Tonight, he’d once again keep the Phils at bay, except for one hiccup. Minor was off early, and the Phils took advantage. Jimmy Rollins and Domonic Brown started the first with back-to-back doubles to make it 1-0. After a Chase Utley fly out, Ryan Howard padded the Phillies lead when he crushed a towering two-run home run to left center field. From there, Minor would settle in. But with the way Hamels was throwing, it wouldn’t matter.

ANOTHER DOM BROWN UPDATE

- Brown was a big part of the action tonight, driving in the first run and scoring the second.  He’d also record his second outfield assist when he gunned down Brian McCann to end the fifth.

- But he wasn’t perfect. On his double, he only reached second base safely because Martin Prado couldn’t handle the throw from the outfield. Then he failed to go back and tag on Utley’s fly ball with no outs. There’s nothing wrong with showing a little aggressiveness, but Brown needs to keep it going through the inning. His failure to tag didn’t cost the team a run this time–because Howard homered–but you’d still like to see a player with Brown’s speed make the fundamental play and get to third with one out. Hopefully he takes something away from that.

- Still, Brown has looked very solid through his first week. He no longer wears the deer-in-headlights expression he had through 2010 and ’11. All the talk has been about how confident he is, and you can see it on the field. There’s a lot of room for growth, but Brown has handled his third stint in the majors with much more poise and adeptness than he had the first two times around. So far.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Goodell will not recuse himself from Brady appeal

Will Smith suspended eight games for 'foreign substance'

Report: Kobe Bryant likely to retire following next season

Don Shula named in painkiller lawsuit from former NFL players

Kyrie Irving questionable for Game 2 versus Atlanta

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Michael Sam signs with CFL’s Montreal Alouettes

Ex-A&M quarterback Kenny Hill transferring to TCU

Michael Bennett compares Pete Carroll to Willy Wonka

Jim Kelly: There is no doubt Tom Brady cheated

Warriors hang on, edge Rockets in Game 2 thriller

Farrell 'not ruling anything out' as Red Sox's struggles persist

Re-evaluating all 30 MLB teams at the quarter mark, ranked

Is virtual reality training the next leap forward for football?

Warriors a very shaky 2-0 against the Rockets

NFL icon Bud Grant zings Pats with Deflategate joke on Twitter

RG3 announces birth daughter's birth on social media

Don't listen to Nick Saban, the bowl system is just fine

MLB scores partial victory in minor league wage lawsuits

Ranking the NBA Playoffs' most significant injuries

WATCH: Will Smith ejected for foreign substance on arm

Guy behind NFL's social media trolling of Pats is a Jets fan?

In defense of 76ers general manager Sam Hinkie

Madison Bumgarner homered off of Clayton Kershaw

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Jim Kelly: No doubt Tom Brady cheated

Post-combine NBA Draft big board: Top 30

Ex-players sue NFL for conspiring to push painkillers

Astros surprising, but can get better with Correa

Here come the Giants

Aaron Hernandez got new tattoo in prison

TUF weekly recap by NOS® Energy Drink

Ten players who could benefit due to PAT rule change

Five QBs set for breakout campaigns

Report: Lakers will pursue Thibodeau

MLS leaders struggling with attendance

LBS: I was a contestant on Sports Jeopardy!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.