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Welcome to the Cole Hamels club: Padres 2, Phillies 1

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Aaron Nola alone wasn’t enough to win this game.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Philadelphia Phillies Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Today, Aaron Nola joined a very exclusive Phillies club. He pitched so well for the Phillies today, and the win was definitely within reach. But pitching can’t score runs, and the Phillies lost 2-1.

So what club did Aaron Nola join today? Why, the Cole Hamels club, of course.

Aaron Nola was the true star of this game, and that’s not just because there was nothing going on anywhere else. He turned in another standout pitching performance, going eight innings and giving up just four hits and two runs. those two runs came on a double, a triple, and a single. So he gave up three of his four hits in just one inning, and then came out to pitch a strong 8th. If he hadn’t been over 100 pitches, I think Pete Mackanin would have let him go out to pitch the ninth. He looked solid and unshakeable all day. God it was so good.

But of course, the Phillies lost. How many times do you remember watching a primo Hamels start that the Phillies lost because they couldn’t string enough hits together? So many. I don’t want Nola to become that, and when the Phillies get good again he’ll hopefully get to experience the glory and wonder that is run support, but he’s going to have to get through a lot more games like these before things will change.

Nola did everything he could today, and the Phillies just weren’t there to back him up. They had four hits total, and their only run came from a home run from Maikel Franco in the fourth inning. It was his only hit of the day, and he also grounded into a double play. The Phillies actually had something going in the seventh inning, with a walk from Nick Williams (!!) and a double from Tommy Joseph. With just one out and runners on first and third for the first time all game, Franco popped out and Andrew Knapp flew out. That was their best scoring chance all day.

The Phillies have had 23 one-run losses this season. According to the Phillies broadcast, that’s the most they’ve ever had before the All-Star break. Last year, they had 23 TOTAL one-run losses.

They’re 28-58. We have one more game left before the All-Star break. It’s within reach for all of us, we just have to get there.