Cole Hamels Seeks Major League Leading Ninth Win, Faces Marlins

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The Phillies won last night's series opener 6-4 and today they'll play in an effort to move 4 games above .500 for the first time this season. Cole Hamels (8-1, 2.43 ERA) has the chance to become the first nine-game winner this afternoon as he takes on the Marlins for the second time this season. 

So far, Hamels has been the best starting pitcher this year. He's got great command on his pitches, he can paint the corner and his cut-fastball may be his new best pitch in his repertoire. Hamels has won five decisions in a row and has only one no-decision this season. In Hamels' last start on Thursday against the Mets, he threw eight innings allowing four earned runs on two two-run home runs. He yielded eight hits altogether and struck out six while walking one. Hamels was backed up big time by the offense, mostly by Ty Wigginton, who went 3-3 with 6 RBI.

Hamels has been lucky this year if you would put it that way. He's gotten the most run support of any Phillies pitcher and he's been pitching well enough to allow them to score just a few runs to get him by. Hamels pitched against the Marlins way back on April 9, the Phillies home opener, and took the loss after allowing three earned runs on eight hits while striking out nine Marlins. In 20 career starts, Hamels is 6-8 with a 3.51 ERA against the Marlins.

The Marlins will send out righty Ricky Nolasco (5-3, 4.26 ERA). Nolasco is coming off of a solid seven-inning outing against the Giants inwhich he allowed three earned runs on five hits. Nolasco got the loss after his offense was unable to provide any runs. Nolasco hasn't faced the Phillies yet this season and is searching for his first win against the team since April 17, 2010. Nolasco is 6-4 with a 3.55 ERA in 12 career starts against the Phillies.

To be honest, we have no writers available after 10 am because most of them will be at the ball game this afternoon. This is a guesstimated lineup by our own @FrankKlose.

Today's Guesstimated lineup vs Miami:

  1. J-Roll SS
  2. Pierre LF
  3. Pence RF
  4. Chooch C
  5. Victorino CF 
  6. Wigginton 1B 
  7. Polly 3B
  8. Galvis 2B
  9. Hamels P.

TV: CSN ; Radio: 1210 WPHT, 94 WIP

Follow Erik on Twitter @ErikSeyboldPHI.