Cole Hamels could rejoin Phillies by the end of the month

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Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels threw three innings in a minor league intrasquad game Tuesday, with Todd Zolecki of MLB.com reporting that he tossed 44 pitches and allowed one run while striking out three.

According to CSNPhilly.com it was a simulated game in which he faced Single-A hitters and “got three outs in his first inning, two outs in his second frame, and five outs in his third inning.”

Hamels is on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation, but has progressed in his throwing program recently without setbacks and Zolecki writes that “if he remains on his current schedule he could return the final week of April.”

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.