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Cole Hamels

SPORTS
March 11, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
FORT MYERS, Fla. - Guys like Jeff Manship inhabit a strange world in spring training. One side of the clubhouse shows the normal order of things, Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard and Chase Utley listening to music and watching television and eating breakfast together around a rectangular table. Another side bubbles with the immortality of youth, minor league teammates like Jesse Biddle and Maikel Franco and Aaron Altherr talking among themselves as they soak it all in, well aware that the exit papers jettisoning them to minor league camp could be signed any day, that their most consequential big-league camps are yet to come.
SPORTS
March 9, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SARASOTA, Fla. - Listed second on Friday's pitching schedule tacked to a board in the Phillies clubhouse was "Gonzalez 2-3. " Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez threw 31 pitches in one inning, and that was enough for Bob McClure, even though the plan called for more. The pitching coach waved at the bullpen from the dugout. Later, Ryne Sandberg used the words "rust" and "erratic" to describe Gonzalez, the team's $12 million import from Cuba. There is opportunity; the Phillies lack a genuine replacement for Cole Hamels in the rotation.
SPORTS
March 8, 2014 | By Bob Ford, Inquirer Columnist
CLEARWATER, Fla. - The long band of thunderstorms that came ashore from the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday morning brought tornado warnings and tight, swirling winds that bent the palm trees lining Bright House Field nearly sideways. Baseball is about optimism, though, so the Yankees got on their bus from Tampa for the scheduled 1:05 p.m. game, and many of the Phillies got on another bus for Lakeland and a split-squad game against the Tigers. Optimism split the doubleheader, with the game in Lakeland being rained out and the home game against New York finally slipping through a narrow window of better weather that opened nearly 90 minutes after the scheduled start.
SPORTS
March 8, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
LAKELAND, Fla. - A small lake formed adjacent to the visitors' clubhouse at Joker Marchant Stadium, where half of the Phillies watched the rain fall after busing 54 miles. Ben Revere posted selfies to Instagram. The game against Detroit was postponed eight minutes after its slated start time. The problems poured all morning. Cole Hamels was unfit to oppose batters in a controlled setting for the first time this spring. So manager Ryne Sandberg and his boss, Ruben Amaro Jr., were forced to contemplate the immediate future without their $144 million lefthanded ace. The 2014 season begins in less than a month, and Amaro issued a familiar plea heard during the previous two seasons of failures.
SPORTS
March 7, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Jonathan Pettibone, who was down for 2 weeks in February, walked off the mound adjacent to the short field at the Carpenter Complex and Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, who has faced major league hitters exactly one time in his life, shortly followed. Behind them was Phillies pitching coach Bob McClure. It was Monday, and McClure reached for a sheet in his back pocket when he was asked if Cole Hamels, also scheduled to throw a side session that morning, was still in line to pitch.
SPORTS
March 7, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
LAKELAND, Fla. - Twenty-four days from today, in Arlington, Texas, two teams will take the field as living testaments to the importance of roster depth. In the home dugout, the Rangers, their rotation missing two of its top three starters, Matt Harrison recovering from back stiffness, Derek Holland on the DL with a knee injury. In the visitor's dugout, a team whose trials and tribulations increased yesterday with the news that lefthander Cole Hamels had hit a bump in his road to recovery from biceps tendinitis.
SPORTS
March 6, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Nights like last night can make a man think about getting a little skin in the game. Most online sports books are offering 60-to-1 odds on the Phillies winning the 2014 World Series, and when you watch Cliff Lee walk to the clubhouse with a 3-1 lead against Toronto's R.A. Dickey, you can't help but think. You know . . . There are plenty of good reasons why you can get these kinds of odds. They are the same reasons why the Phillies regular-season over/under is currently 76.5 wins at Bovada.com.
SPORTS
March 5, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Cody Asche threw his glove on the infield grass and dropped to the ground to stretch. Minutes later, he was back up and at his position at third base, fielding ground balls with Kevin Frandsen. "I got lucky," Asche said. Less than 24 hours earlier, Asche was struck in the back of his right hand with an errant pitch from Pittsburgh's Yao-Hsun Yang. The sound of ball meeting bone was jarring; it quieted most of the ballpark Sunday afternoon at Bright House Field.
SPORTS
March 4, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - A.J. Burnett plunked Pedro Alvarez on his back foot Sunday afternoon with a two-strike pitch. The two men joked about it. Burnett, apparently, has a propensity for being so precise that often the batter swings and misses at that pitch. For the last two seasons, Alvarez marveled at that skill. He knew how much it irked Burnett not to acquire another victim. Now, as opponents and not teammates, they laughed while Burnett's first inning as a Phillie unfolded. "You should have swung," Burnett yelled.
SPORTS
March 3, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Ethan Martin finished an early-morning workout, and while his teammates checked in and put on their home uniforms, the pitcher changed out of his baseball uniform and into street clothes. Shortly after the 24-year-old Martin left the building, he was stopped by one of his bosses. General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. patted the pitcher on the back and wished him well. Martin was off to get an MRI on his ailing right shoulder. On his way to the parking lot Martin passed 23-year-old Jonathan Pettibone, who was throwing off the mound for the first time in nearly 2 weeks after his own bout with shoulder discomfort.
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