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Cole Hamels

SPORTS
October 1, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
The last gasps of the 2014 Phillies filled the room while Cole Hamels spoke. He stood in the middle of the clubhouse Sunday afternoon as his teammates packed boxes and hugged. The exits for most were quick; no one wanted to dwell on this disaster. Hamels is not a man tasked with making franchise-altering decisions - "I'm glad I don't have to make those changes," he said - but his answers about the current state were more forthcoming than the rhetoric of his bosses. The 30-year-old ace agreed that the last two seasons are evidence of how far the Phillies are from contention.
SPORTS
September 30, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
COLE HAMELS left Citizens Bank Park for the final time this season with a fat lip. He took a hard one-hopper off his face earlier in the day. "Sometimes," he said, "that happens. " It was the perfect souvenir from a season that was statistically the best of his career, but also forgettable since he had little to show for it when it all mercifully came to an end yesterday afternoon in South Philly. In the midst of retiring 20 straight Braves batters - and 24 of the final 25 he faced - Hamels took a comebacker off the bat of Tommy La Stella off his face to begin the second inning.
SPORTS
September 30, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Jimmy Rollins grabbed a microphone Sunday, minutes before the start of a 2-1 Phillies loss to Atlanta, and scanned Citizens Bank Park. He saw a stadium emptier than usual for a season finale. He saw his teammates, who were paid more than any Phillies team ever. Yet they slogged to a 73-89 season, the team's identical record from last season. The shortstop had to say something at this burial. "Before we're done this year, we'd like to say thank you for showing up," Rollins told the fans.
SPORTS
September 30, 2014 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
It was a beautiful day for baseball, unless, of course, it was that brand of baseball the Phillies have tortured their fans with the last two seasons. Not even clear skies and comfortable temperatures could erase the stench that has saturated Citizens Bank Park for far too long. There was no formal state-of-the-team address by general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. or acting team president Pat Gillick before or after the season's final game. None was needed. We've known for months that this was another lost season for the team with the third-highest payroll in baseball, and we've been assured for quite some time that the general manager will remain in charge of personnel operations going forward.
SPORTS
September 28, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
PEOPLE LOSE jobs when teams finish in last place. The first casualty of the 2014 Phillies season is the man who has ran their draft room for a dozen years. The Phillies announced that assistant general manager and director of amateur scouting Marti Wolever will not be back in 2015. Wolever, among other duties, ran the team's amateur draft each year. "There's nothing easy about the decision we made, but we're trying to get better and we're trying to make changes," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said.
SPORTS
September 26, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MIAMI - At this point in the season, small victories are really all the Phillies can hope to achieve. They showed up to Marlins Park yesterday afternoon, for the road finale of the season, with the chance to accomplish two things in one game: clinch a season that wouldn't finish with 90 losses and avoid securing a final resting place in last place when the 2014 season comes to an end on Sunday. Modest goals, sure. But reachable, if not somewhat insignificant. The Phillies haven't finished a season with 90 or more losses since 2000, also the last time they finished in last place in the National League East.
SPORTS
September 25, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MIAMI - There hasn't been any single player on the Phillies roster who has been consistently excellent each time they've taken the field in 2014. This isn't breaking news, of course; the team's record and place in the standings are there for all eyes to see. But Cole Hamels, easily the most valuable player on the team this season, has been close to excellent in each of the 29 times he's taken the mound. He'll eclipse the 200-inning plateau this Sunday, despite missing three weeks in April.
SPORTS
September 25, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MIAMI - The Phillies had no need for a closer in Tuesday night's 2-0 loss, not when their anemic offense sputtered again against the Marlins in this soon-to-be-finished disaster. But there is a decent chance they'll require one in the season's final five games, and team officials insisted that crotch-grabbing Jonathan Papelbon is still the man. Papelbon's seven-game suspension ended Tuesday. He resumed his routine with a mid-game stroll to the bullpen, warmed up in the ninth inning, and remained unused.
SPORTS
September 20, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - Darin Ruf lost his rookie status in 2013, but when he returned to his locker Wednesday after a two-hit night, he found a costume. It was dress-up night for the rookies, an annual hazing event he should have avoided. Ruf's space-rock outfit made him look like David Bowie in Labyrinth . That was fine. Ruf is just happy to see more playing time. His reward Thursday for starting two rallies Wednesday was another start at first base, this time as the cleanup hitter. He doubled and scored a run in a 7-3 loss to the Padres.
SPORTS
September 20, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - Ben Revere figured it was a trick question. He scanned the Phillies clubhouse Thursday afternoon at Petco Park and looked for the team's last 50-base stealer. He glanced at Jimmy Rollins' locker. Nope, Rollins stole 47 in 2008. But the answer was somewhere in the room. "Who's that?" Revere asked. Juan Samuel, now the team's first-base coach, stole 53 bases in 1985. (Revere, 26, was born in 1988.) Every major-league team has had at least one player with 50 steals since then.
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