Hamels wasn't sure if there is a prize for the first triple of the season by a pitcher, but his first career three-bagger was the first by a Phillies pitcher since Cory Lidle in 2006.
"I was just going to keep going," Hamels said of the third-inning drive off Nationals starter Livan Hernandez. "If they threw me out, they threw me out. I would've kept the double."
Hamels, who had the seventh two-hit game of his career, said he had no delusions about possibly getting his first career home run, even though the ball bounced off the rightfield wall.
"I didn't hit it that well," he said. "It was kind of off the end of the bat, which is why I kept running . . .
"I'd rather hit one into the second deck. If I hit a homer, I want people to say, 'He hit a homer.' We've got a small enough park. I want it to be a big-time homer that's gonna go out of any park."
A lot of top major league pitchers have a history of being solid hitters in high school. Not so with Hamels, who said his high school team - Rancho Bernardo in San Diego - had a number of pro hitting prospects and he actually had a designated hitter when he pitched.
"We had several draft picks," said Hamels, who is currently tied for 13th in the National League for triples. "They wanted me to focus on pitching because they knew that's what I was going to be drafted for."
At this point of the season, Hamels is again showing his high school coaches knew what they were doing and so did the Phillies when they selected him in the first round of the 2002 draft. After a disastrous first start when he lasted just 2 innings of a 7-1 loss, Hamels has been spot-on.
He has given up just six earned runs over his last five starts for an earned run average of 1.42. In that span, he has lowered his season ERA from 20.25 after his first start to 2.65.
Hamels stifled the Nationals, spreading five hits over his first complete game of the season and eighth of his career.
The only hiccup Hamels had was a solo home run to Michael Morse in the fifth inning. Ironically, Morse's .234 batting average is lower than Hamels, who is now up to .333.
It was funny that after the controversy about Hamels getting booed at Citizens Bank Park during his first start, a lot of fans kept pointing to how Hamels handled, or better yet, didn't handle himself well during the 2009 season.
They kept overlooking his outstanding 2010 campaign when he was as mentally tough as any pitcher in posting a career-best 3.06 ERA despite receiving the fifth-lowest run support of any pitcher in the National League (3.49 runs).
The Phillies scored two or fewer runs in 14 of his 33 starts and failed to put up a single run while he was in the game in 11 starts.
But his last five starts have shown exactly what type of character Hamels is made of.
"I'm just kind of keeping the same mentality I had last year," Hamels said. "It's going out, trying to make pitch after pitch.
"I'm not really focusing on the picture. I've tried to simplify things. I know I can make one good pitch and then move on to the next pitch."
Hamels has added a cutter to his already-impressive arsenal of fastball, curve and changeup.
"I feel fit, strong," he said. "I feel like I have pitches that I can throw any time in the count. I think that's kind of key, to have three pitches, possibly a fourth every once in a while.
"I think that's where you have to be in order to be successful in this game."
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