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Cole Hamels Suffers Setback

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Cole Hamels is unlikely to pitch in April after suffering another setback.

USA TODAY Sports

Hey everybody, raise your hand if you'd like to get off this merry-go-round.

After getting a late jump on spring training after feeling some soreness in his pitching shoulder, Hamels will not throw from a mound for at least a week and appears unlikely to pitch in the rotation in April.

This is not awesome, especially for a team as dependent on the top three of their starting rotation as the Phillies are.

The good news is that it does not appear Hamels has re-injured himself and is apparently not feeling any pain.

Of course, this could still happen...

Good point, Stolnis.

Just last week, the Phils were encouraged by Hamels' bullpen performance, so much so they claimed he was only 5-7 days behind the rest of the starters in camp.

Not any more.

This latest setback also means the Phillies are going to have to actually use the #5 starter in the first month of the season, which makes the performance of Roberto Hernandez over the next few weeks so important, as he becomes the new #4. And while Erivn Santana is still available, it's unlikely the Phils would look to pay a big price for another free agent, especially one that would require them to give up a draft pick.

So, the new #5 is down to the still-recovering-from-injury Jonathan Pettibone, the not-ready-for-primetime-Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, and non-roster invitees David Buchanan, Jeff Manship, Sean O'Sullivan, and Mario Hollands.

And, of course, if Hamels is out for any longer than just the first month of the season, all bets are off.

But hey, at least the offense is killing it this spring, right?