Cole Hamels is 1-8

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Phillies starter Cole Hamels lost his eighth game this afternoon as he was vastly out-dueled by Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg in the Nats’ 6-1 victory. Hamels allowed five runs (three earned) in 6.1 innings, striking out six and walking one as his ERA was actually lowered to 4.43. The first two months for Hamels have been shocking, reminiscent of his disappointing 2009 season in which he finished with a 4.32 ERA.

Hamels’ eighth loss leads all Major League starters, one ahead of Edwin Jackson and Joe Blanton. It has been an odd year for many assumed top-tier pitchers:

  • Jeremy Hellickson, Rays: 2-2, 5.37 ERA
  • David Price, Rays: 1-4, 5.24 ERA (on the 15-day DL with strained right triceps)
  • Matt Cain, Giants: 3-2, 5.12 ERA
  • Tim Hudson, Braves: 4-3, 4.98 ERA
  • R.A. Dickey, Blue Jays: 4-6, 4.85 ERA
  • Wade Miley, Diamondbacks: 3-4, 4.53 ERA
  • Yovani Gallardo, Brewers: 3-4, 4.50 ERA

While Hamels has certainly not been nearly as effective as he has been in years past, you have to wonder how many wins he could have lucked into if he had received better run support.

Report: Mets ownership backs Terry Collins

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The Mets entered Sunday night’s game against the Pirates with a disappointing 20-27 record. While the club has dealt with a litany of injuries, manager Terry Collins has also drawn criticism for in-game decision-making, particularly regarding his decision-making.

Owner Fred Wilpon is still Collins’ strongest supporter, however, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports. As a result, the team is unlikely to make a managerial change anytime soon. If the Mets continue to struggle, though, ownership may feel pressured to make a change.

Collins became the longest-tenured manager in Mets history last week. Collins managed the Mets to a 77-85 record in 2011 and has overall helped the club go 501-518, winning the NL Pennant in 2015. He is not signed to a contract beyond this season.

Joe Mauer becomes first Twin to reach base seven times in a game since Rod Carew

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Twins first baseman Joe Mauer had a game for the record books on Sunday against the Rays. He finished 4-for-5 with an RBI double, a solo home run, two singles, and three walks in eight plate appearances. Unfortunately for him, the Twins still lost 8-6 in 15 innings.

ESPN’s Stats & Info notes that Mauer is the first Twin to reach base seven times in one game since Rod Carew in 1972 against the Brewers. The last player to reach base seven times in one game (without the aid of an error) was Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford on August 8 last season against the Marlins. The feat has only been accomplished seven times this decade, so about once a year.

After Sunday’s game, Mauer is batting .283/.363/.408 with three home runs, 18 RBI, and 23 runs scored in 171 plate appearances. Not too shabby.