Phillies' Hamels beats Arizona for first big league win

PHOENIX (AP) -- Philadelphia pitcher Cole Hamels needed only
three starts to record his first big league victory.

"It's definitely nice, especially getting it early on," Hamels
said after the Phillies beat Arizona 10-1 Tuesday night. "I think
in the past couple years, every time I've played it's taken me six,
seven starts to get a 'W.' "

Pat Burrell, Sal Fasano and Shane Victorino homered for the
Phillies, who have won three straight. Hamels allowed one run in 5
2-3 innings, combining with three relievers for a four-hitter.

Hamels (1-0), the Phillies' first-round pick in the 2002 draft,
looked sharp after spending 18 days on the disabled list with a
strained left shoulder. He cruised against the Diamondbacks, whose
.275 team batting average is second in the National League.

"I felt probably the best I've felt in a long time," Hamels
said. "I felt great. I was executing all the pitches."

Hamels outpitched Arizona veteran Russ Ortiz (0-4), who also
returned to the rotation after a stint on the disabled list with a
calf injury.

The Diamondbacks saw their NL West lead over Los Angeles sliced
to 1½ games. Arizona came out flat after news broke, shortly before
the game, that federal agents had searched reliever Jason
Grimsley's house in Scottsdale as part of their investigation into
steroid use in baseball. Grimsley, who declined to comment after
the game, spent the game in the bullpen, warming up at one point.

"I just think that the effect on us today, as we heard about
one of our teammates, it certainly had an effect on us," manager
Bob Melvin said.

Hamels allowed three hits, mixing fastballs and curveballs to
keep the Diamondbacks off balance. He set the tone early, striking
out leadoff batter Eric Byrnes and No. 2 hitter Chad Tracy. Hamels
retired the first 11 batters he faced before Conor Jackson blooped
a single to center field with two out in the fourth inning.

"Hamels was good," Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel said.
"I think he can be better than that, really. He's just got to get
his feet on the ground.

"I've said all along, if we can keep him healthy, he's going to
help us. I mean, it's that simple. He looks like a pitcher."

The Phillies gave Hamels plenty of support. Burrell hit a
two-run homer down the left-field line in the first, and
Philadelphia added another run in the fifth and three more in the

Hamels was involved in the sixth inning rally, much to his
surprise. After Arizona reliever Brandon Medders struck out the
first two batters, he walked Hamels on a 3-2 pitch that appeared to
be a strike, at least to Hamels. He took several strides toward the
visiting dugout before he realized that he had drawn a walk.

"I thought it was right down the pipe," Hamels said.

Hamels had struck out four times, grounded out twice and
recorded a sacrifice bunt in his first seven plate appearances in
the big leagues.

"I don't think he knew the way to first base," Manuel said.

With Hamels aboard, Jimmy Rollins singled and first baseman
Jackson was charged with an error on Chase Utley's hard grounder,
scoring Hamels and putting runners on second and third. Bobby Abreu
singled to drive in two more runs.

Hamels may have tired running the bases. In the bottom of the
inning, he loaded the bases on two walks and a single before giving
up a run on Jackson's sacrifice fly. After Hamels retired Luis
Gonzalez on a bouncer back to the mound, Manuel summoned Geoff
Geary, who came on to get Damion Easley to foul out.

"(Hamels) could have been getting a little tired," Manuel
said. "But he wasn't going to tell me."

Hamels struck out two and walked two.

Hamels had a better night than Ortiz, who needed 41 pitches to
get out of the first inning, walking three and giving up Burrell's
homer and a double to Ryan Howard. Ortiz struck out Fasano to leave
the bases loaded, and that turned his outing around.

Ortiz retired 10 of the next 11 batters before allowing Howard's
RBI single in the fifth. Ortiz gave up three runs and four hits in
five innings. He walked five, tying a season high, and struck out a
season-high seven.

"I had a lot more adrenalin going in the first inning than I
did during my rehab," Ortiz said. "I think after that inning was
over I felt I was in control with my emotions and everything, and
so I ended the last four innings fine."

Game Notes
Arizona RHP Dustin Nippert, who has been pitching for
Triple-A Tucson, will start Wednesday, Melvin announced after the
game. Melvin said RHP Juan Cruz, who has a sore shoulder, would be
placed on the disabled list. ... Arizona OF Shawn Green went
0-for-3 to snap an 11-game hitting streak. ... The Phillies'
bullpen has allowed four runs in 34 1-3 innings, a 1.05 ERA. ...
The Phils have hit a home run in 44 of 58 games. ... Ortiz, who
signed a $33 million, four-year contract in December 2004, has one
victory in his last 18 starts dating to May 2005. ... Philadelphia
OF Bobby Abreu drew his major league-leading 60th walk.