Hamels throws 5 neat innings, Phillies beat Astros
KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) — Cole Hamels is concerned about his delivery, though it didn't seem like much of a problem Sunday in a 7-1 exhibition victory over the Houston Astros.
The Philadelphia lefty gave up a leadoff double to Tyler Greene in the first inning, then retired 14 straight hitters.
Hamels alllowed one hit in five innings. Brandon Laird was the only other batter to reach against Hamels, drawing a two-out walk in the fifth.
Greene scored Houston's run on a groundball. Hamels struck out one in his fourth spring start.
"At least I was able to build up my pitch count, which was huge," Hamels said, "but I've got to get the timing issue down so I can go seven, eight, nine innings and throw as many pitches as I have to."
Five days after giving up eight runs and 12 hits to a Dominican Republic team tuning up for the World Baseball Classic, Hamels looked more like the pitcher who won a career-high 17 games last season.
"You just keep making adjustments and I was finally able to get a few good pitches there, but it's not as consistent as where I need it to be," he said. "It's just a timing issue. More reps obviously will help."
"I feel strong and that's great, but you want to feel strong and you want your timing to be right on target, too, to pitch effectively. That's kind of where my mind's wandering. I just need to get there and I have a lot of work to do."
Laynce Nix hit his first home run for the Phillies. Freddy Galvis had three straight hits and Erik Kratz hit a two-run triple off Jarred Cosart.
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