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Phils' Hamels, three relievers no-hit Braves; Papelbon closes it out

The Sports Xchange

September 01. 2014 8:40PM
From left, Philadelphia Phillies relief pitchers Jonathan Papelbon, Ken Giles, and Jake Diekman, and starting pitcher Cole Hamels, are interviewed after a combined no hitter against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field on Monday. (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

ATLANTA — Wildness cost Cole Hamels a chance at his first no-hitter, but the Philadelphia Phillies left-hander got to share in a combined one.

Hamels (8-6) didn’t allow a hit through six innings and the bullpen did the rest as the Phillies recorded their first shared no-hitter and 12th overall in a 7-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Monday afternoon before 34,178 at Turner Field.

Hamels, who came in 3-0 with a 1.16 ERA in his past four starts against the Braves, walked five and hit a batter, but also struck out seven. He threw 108 pitches in the heat and humidity, with 66 of them strikes.

“It wasn’t a hard decision,” said Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg of removing Hamels. “He was pretty much spent ... and he wasn’t going to go nine (innings).”

Left-hander Jake Diekman struck out two in the seventh inning, right-hander Ken Giles fanned the side in the eighth and closer Jonathan Papelbon closed the no-hitter out in the ninth, getting second baseman Phil Gosselin to line out softly to first baseman Ryan Howard for the final out of the combined no-hitter.

“I understood coming around the sixth inning that it was going to be a short game,” Hamels said. “It was nice to see what we could do together. It was fun to watch them and create something very special.”

Roy Halladay hurled the past two no-hitters for the Phillies, both in 2010 — one in the postseason.

“It’s a big moment for the team,” Sandberg said. “We got to do a little champagne toast.”

Center fielder Ben Revere, who came in with just 15 RBIs in 125 games, drove in a career-high five runs against the Braves (72-66).

There have been three no-hitters at Turner Field since it opened in 1997. Randy Johnson of Arizona threw a perfect game in 2004 and Ubaldo Jimenez no-hit the Braves for Colorado in 2010.

“It seemed like against one guy he couldn’t throw a strike, he’d be all over the place,” Gosselin said of Hamels. “And then against the next guy, he’d be boom, boom, boom and he’s dotting up on you. So it was one of those effectively-wild days where he had the good stuff and couldn’t control it with everybody.”

Already headed out of the game, Hamels was pinch hit for in the seventh inning as the Phillies broke the game open against Braves starter Julio Teheran (13-10) with three unearned runs after an error by shortstop Andrelton Simmons.

Revere, who had plated the Phillies’ first run with a sacrifice fly in the third inning, chased Teheran with his two-out bases-loaded triple to the fence in right-center field after the error and two walks, one of which was intentional.

Teheran, who had been 2-0 with a 0.75 ERA in three previous starts against the Phillies this season, gave up five hits and five runs (two earned) over 6 2/3 innings. Two of his four walks were intentional and he struck out three.

Hamels, now 16-8 lifetime against the Braves, walked the first two batters of the game, hit the leadoff man in the second and walked two of the first three batters in the third. Right fielder Marlon Byrd made a diving catch on a sinking liner by third baseman Chris Johnson to end the third, though, and the Braves stranded five runners in scoring position during the first three innings.

“It was nice I brought my glove, because I didn’t bring my bat,” said Byrd, who was 0-for-5 with three strikeouts. “Right before the pitch, I creeped up a little bit and then I got a pretty good jump.”

The Phillies manufactured a run off Teheran in the third inning. Third baseman Cody Asche led off with a double, moved to third on a bunt by Hamels and scored on Revere’s sacrifice fly to left field.

Hamels had a leadoff single in the sixth inning and came around to score on a triple by shortstop Jimmy Rollins, who had doubled in the first inning, as the Phillies made the score 2-0.

The 3-for-5 outing was the 658th career multihit game for Rollins, breaking a tie for the Phillies’ record with Richie Ashburn.

Revere drove in his fifth run with a single off reliever Juan Jaime in the two-run ninth inning.

“It just feels like a loss,” Johnson said. “No matter if we get 20 hits or zero hits, we lost one. Tomorrow, we’ll come out and try to win one.”

“The game of baseball is kind of funny,” said Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez, whose team won 1-0 over Miami on Sunday after being blanked by the Marlins the game before. “You feel like you’re in a good stride and then you go through a stretch of scoring one run in 27 innings.”

Red Sox/MLB