Mar 152011
Phillies lefty Cole Hamels

Phillies lefty Cole Hamels

March 14

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Too early for bad blood? Maybe not. Some of it was displayed — though rather briefly — at Osceola County Stadium on Monday, during the Phillies’ 7-6 win over the Astros.

In the bottom of the second, Astros second baseman Bill Hall took exception to a Cole Hamels fastball that buzzed him inside after he had stepped out. Hall took a few steps towards the mound and began jarring at Hamels, prompting home-plate umpire Laz Diaz to issue both sides a warning.

After his shaky start, Hamels brushed it off, saying he was just trying to speed the game up and that there are “no hard feelings.”

“I don’t know him personally,” Hamels said about Hall, “but I do know he is a good guy.”

Perhaps he would’ve felt differently after hearing what Hall told The Houston Chronicle after the game.

“I don’t know if he was mad because he gave up a homer [to Carlos Lee in the previous at-bat], or if he was mad because the umpire gave me time, but I’m not going to let him speed-pitch me,” Hall told the newspaper. “Obviously, he threw a pitch in, and I’m not going to let him disrespect me, either. He kind of said something that I didn’t like too much. It’s over with.

“He’s definitely a marked man for me now, so when I do some damage off him, I’m going to let him know I did some damage off him. I can guarantee that. … If you disrespect me, I’m going to do my best to disrespect you back. Obviously not in a way to disrespect the game, but obviously I’m going to let him know when I face him.”

Michael Martinez was the difference-maker after a key stolen base in the top of the ninth, when the center fielder raced home from second on a wild pitch by Fernando Rodriguez for the go-ahead run.

Hamels did struggle with his command in his fourth Grapefruit League start, giving up five runs on seven hits (three of them homers) in 3 2/3 innings. Prior to that, the lefty had given up just three runs in 10 Grapefruit League frames.

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