After suffering a bruised right hand in his last outing, Hamels is expected to get the ball Tuesday night in Miami where the NL East-leading Philadelphia Phillies go for their seventh straight victory over the Florida Marlins.
Selected as an All-Star for the second time Sunday, Hamels will be joined on the NL squad next Tuesday by fellow Phillies starters Cliff Lee(notes) and Roy Halladay(notes). It is the first time in club history that three Phillies pitchers have been selected to the Midsummer Classic.
“It’s pretty cool,” Hamels told the Phillies’ official website. “It’s an honor just to be in that sort of caliber of pitchers. What we’re doing right now, we’re just trying to be the best. Obviously, it’s showing that we’re capable of it.”
After Vance Worley(notes) threw seven innings of two-hit ball in Monday’s 1-0 series-opening victory, Hamels (9-4, 2.41 ERA) is set to make his final start before the All-Star break. He left Thursday’s 5-2 loss to Boston after getting hit on the glove hand by a line drive off Adrian Gonzalez’s(notes) bat in the fourth inning.
X-rays were negative, and Hamels said he doesn’t have any lingering effects from getting hit.
“I’m good,” the left-hander said Saturday after playing catch.
That’s good news for the Phillies (54-32), who have won 20 of 24 in Miami and eight of 10 overall in this divisional matchup in 2011.
The Marlins (38-47), losers of 14 of 16 at home, will look to bounce back with Chris Volstad(notes) (4-7, 5.01) trying to match a career best by winning his third consecutive start. He last accomplished that feat from Sept 20-30.
Volstad has done a great job keeping the ball down in his last two starts by inducing 26 groundouts, but keeping the ball in the park could be a challenge against the Phillies. Philadelphia tagged him for a career-worst four homers in a 9-1 home win June 14.
Marlins right-fielder Mike Stanton(notes), who has not gone deep in 75 at-bats, is 2 for 12 with seven strikeouts versus Hamels. The Phillies left-hander improved to 5-7 with a 3.50 ERA in 17 starts against Florida after leaving in the eighth inning of the June 14 victory with tightness in the middle of his back.