Cole Hamels had no-hit stuff Monday. He just didn't have the pitch count to go with it. Seven of the first eight pitches Hamels threw on a sweltering Labor Day start at Turner Field landed out of the strike zone. Five of the first 12 batters he faced reached base with a free pass or were being hit by a pitch. The only thing rising quicker than the first-pitch temperature in Atlanta on Monday afternoon was Hamels’ pitch count. Hamels had thrown 108 pitches as he stood in the on-deck circle in the seventh inning of a two-run game. But he also hadn’t allowed a run. But the 30-year-old was still part of history as one of four pitchers to combine to no-hit the Braves in the Phillies 7-0 win. Jake Diekman, Ken Giles, and Jonathan Papelbon followed Hamels with clean innings in the seventh, eighth and ninth. The no-hitter was the fourth this season, and the first combined no-hitter since the Mariners used six pitchers to complete the feat in 2012. It was the first Phillies no-hitter since Roy Halladay's domination of the Reds in the NLDS in 2010.
MLB NEWS & NOTES
- Miguel Cabrera hit two home runs and finished 4-for-5 in the Tigers' 12-1 win over the Indians on Monday. Cabrera was in one of his scary zones on Labor Day. He hit a two-run homer in the first inning and book-ended that with a solo shot in the eighth. In between the home runs, he hit a couple singles. Cabrera has only hit 19 long balls this year and he had only hit three in the second-half coming into Monday.
Adam Dunn went 2-for-3 including a homer and he drove in two in his first game with the A's on Monday. He got things going in style, hitting a two-run homer off of Mariners' starter Chris Young in the first inning. The home run was Dunn's 21st of the year. The Athletics are in need of an offensive shake-up and hope Dunn can revitalize their struggling offense in the dogfight that is the AL West. Dunn batted clean-up in this one. For the year, he's owns a .224 batting average.
David Price threw seven innings of one-run ball in Monday's win over the Indians. He walked just two and struck out eight while scattering eight hits. Price was facing off with Indians' ace Corey Kluber, but what looked like a fun pitching match-up quickly fell apart as Kluber was rocked for 5 runs in 2 2/3 innings. Price has had his ups and downs with the Tigers, but starts like Labor Day's are the reason why they acquired him.
Denard Span had his second career multihomer game on Sunday. He finished the game 2-for-5 with two home runs and three RBI. His first multihomer game came back in September 2008. Span is batting .360 in 43 games since the All-Star break.
- The Houston Astros relieved Bo Porter as manager of the club on Monday with a month to go in his second season. There are reports that Porter and general manager Jeff Luhnow did not see eye-to-eye on the direction of the team moving forward. Luhnow refused repeatedly to get into more detail about why Porter was let go as he fielded questions for almost 25 minutes on Monday afternoon. He did say that he had been mulling the move for a few weeks and that he made the final decision on Sunday. Porter was never given a team that could contend and it appears that he was just a fill-in during the Astros rebuilding project. Expect Luhnow to bring in a manager with more experience. Tom Lawless will take over for Porter for the final weeks of the season.
- FINALLY! Joc Pederson was recalled by the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday from Triple-A Albuquerque. Pederson will make his long-awaited arrival to the majors, a promotion that's been long overdue. Unfortunately for the 22-year-old prospect, the Dodgers outfield still remains jam-packed, likely forcing Pederson to settle in as an overqualified pinch-hitting in the final weeks of the season. He'll likely enter 2015 as one of the top hitting prospects in baseball, after supplying 33 homers and stealing 30 bases over 121 games for Albuquerque.
- The race for the American League Central and the National League Central crown is up for grabs. In the AL Central, the Kansas City Royals, Detroit Tigers, and the Cleveland Indians are separated by 4.5 games. In the NL Central, the St. Louis Cardinals finally took over first place on Monday after the Milwaukee Brewers spent 132 days at the top of the division. The Pittsburgh Pirates are just two games behind the Cardinals.
Cody Ross (calf) was activated from the 15-day disabled list on Monday after being sidelined with a right strained calf. Ross has hit .238 with two homers and 11 RBIs in 66 games this season.