Hamels or Lee in Game 1?

Thumbnail image for hamels 0821.jpg
lee 0829.jpgThe Phillies are expected to announce Cole Hamels or Cliff Lee as their Game 1 NLDS starter before a workout tomorrow at Citizens Bank Park.

Who should it be?

Hamels pitched Saturday, which means he would be pitching on short rest — something he has never done in his career. But he also threw just 47 pitches, which are fewer pitches than he throws in a typical bullpen session. Hamels went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in last year’s playoffs. He earned World Series and National League Championship Series MVP honors. He proved himself to be a big-game pitcher. But he also went just 10-11 with a 4.32 ERA this season, and is 0-2 with a 7.02 ERA in his last three starts. His season ERA is the 11th highest in the National League out of 46 pitchers.

Lee has not pitched since Thursday. He is well rested. He also is well motivated to pitch in the postseason for the first time in his career. He went 7-4 with a 3.39 ERA in 12 starts with the Phillies, but is just 2-4 with a 6.13 ERA in his last seven starts. He looked a little better in his last start, despite giving up four runs.

Hamels or Lee? I wouldn’t be surprised either way, but I think Lee makes more sense. He is rested and ready. Hamels, even though he threw just 47 pitches, has never come back on short rest. It might not be worth taking Hamels out of his routine with a guy like Lee just as capable of pitching Game 1.

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4 Comments

I’m not as concerned with the 47 pitches Hamels threw this past weekend as I would be if he would have to pitch game 4 on short rest. If the Phillies would find themselves down 2 games to 1 they’d probably want their best pitcher in a must win situation for game 4. I’m afraid Hamels would say no because he has it stuck in his head that he can only pitch every 5th day. Start Lee in game 1 and if needed to even the series he’ll take the ball again in game 4. Let Hamels pitch on Thursday and then he’ll have his full rest if there’s a game 5 next Tuesday. On the other hand, if the Phillies would be up 2 games to 1, then I’d start my #4 guy in game 4. If they lose they will then have a well rested Lee and Hamels for game 5.

Getting back to the Home Field advantage issue for a second, I came across these interesting pieces of statistical info:
Howard Home HRS 18 AWAY 27
Utley HOME HRs 16 AWAY 15 HRs !!!
Werth HOME HRs 21 Away 16 HRs
Ibanez HOME HRs 13 AWAY 21 HRS

Runs scored at home for phillies 408 on the year!!!!
RUns scored on the road 412 !!!!!

Safe to say we can score and go long anywhere we like, or happen to be

I don’t understand why there is any debate about who starts game #1. It looks like they had it set up to go Lee-Hamels all along. If Hamels goes in game #1, thay are asking him to do something that he has never done in his professional career (3 days rest) and sidelining Lee for a solid week. It makes no sense. I know Hamels is Charlie’s guy but they should have thought about that over the last couple of weeks down the stretch.

Phan, why give away the plans for free? Make everyone think a bit and worry even more

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