Phillies name Cole Hamels as Opening Day starter

6 Comments

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as the Phillies arranged their rotation this spring with this very idea in mind, but the team announced this evening that Cole Hamels will start on Opening Day against the Braves on April 1.

This will be the first Opening Day assignment of Hamels’ career. As a result, Halladay’s streak of Opening Day starts will end at 10. Halladay, who has started the last three openers for the Phillies, endorsed Hamels for the honor earlier this spring by saying that this is his time to lead the staff.

Hamels, 29, posted a 3.05 ERA and 216/52 K/BB ratio over 215 1/3 innings last season. The southpaw is entering the first year of a six-year, $144 million contract.

Zach Britton receives stem cell injection, likely done for the season

Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Orioles closer Zach Britton is likely done for the remainder of the 2017 season after receiving a stem cell injection in his left knee, Peter Schmuck and Jon Meoli of the Baltimore Sun report. Britton has been battling knee problems for most of the season.

The Orioles are still technically in the AL Wild Card race, entering play Thursday 5.5 games behind the Twins for the second Wild Card slot. With only nine games remaining, however, the 73-80 Orioles are likely being realistic about their chances and not taking any unnecessary risks with Britton.

Britton, 29, put up a 2.89 ERA with 15 saves and a 29/18 K/BB ratio in 37 1/3 innings this season. He will be eligible for arbitration for the fourth and final time this offseason.

Dodgers can clinch NL West on Friday

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Dodgers staved off a four-game series sweep at the hands of the Phillies, winning 5-4 on Thursday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. The win reduced their magic number in the NL West to one, meaning that a win against the Giants at home or a Diamondbacks loss to the Marlins on Friday will result in clinching the division.

Of course, the Dodgers winning and the Diamondbacks losing hasn’t exactly been a sure thing lately. The D-Backs rattled off a 13-game winning streak from August 24 through September 6. The Dodgers lost 11 games in a row from September 2-11 and were on a four-game slide before Thursday’s win.

The Dodgers will send Rich Hill to the mound to start opposite Jeff Samardzija. The Diamondbacks have Zack Greinke opposing Adam Conley.