California native Cole Hamels has traditionally pitched very well at Chavez Ravine, home of the Los Angeles Dodgers. According to Ruben Amaro, he may be making his season debut there on April 22nd if all goes well.
RAJ also on board with Hamels making just 2 more rehab starts as long as pitcher continues to progress positively. April 22 return possible.
— Ryan Lawrence (@ryanlawrence21) April 10, 2014
The quote from Amaro comes a day after Ryne Sandberg said that ‘Hamels was itching to get back’ from biceps tendinitis that has already cost him the first eight games of the Phillies 2014 campaign.
This past Sunday, Cole tossed four innings of two run ball, allowing two homeruns, but only one hit other than two solo shots. Hamels threw 65 pitches in that outing, and will continue to work his pitch-count up over the next two minor-league starts.
Jonathan Pettibone will pitch in Hamels spot in the rotation this Saturday against the Miami Marlins, Amaro said this afternoon. I think it is still safe to expect that the Phillies will be cautious with Hamels, so my guess would be that he still makes at least three starts in the minor-leagues. If not, getting Hamels back early will bring a big boost to the starting rotation.