(Sports Network) - Cole Hamels tries to put a shaky season debut behind him on
Sunday when the Philadelphia Phillies close out a three-game series with the
Kansas City Royals at Citizens Bank Park.
Hamels was roughed up by the Atlanta Braves in his Opening Day start on
Monday, as he allowed five runs and seven hits - three home runs - in only
five innings to take the loss.
"You have to be able to establish the fastball down in the zone, and I wasn't
able to do that as much as I'd like," Hamels said. "Most of the pitches that
were hit out were fastballs up in the zone. I want to claim that's
uncharacteristic, but there are times when you have to be able to make the
adjustment and I wasn't able to make the adjustment fast enough."
This will be his first-ever start against Kansas City, which will hand the
ball to righty James Shields.
Shields was impressive in his Royals' debut on Monday, but was outdueled by
Chicago's Chris Sale in a 1-0 loss. Shields, though, made one mistake to White
Sox catcher Tyler Flowers, whose solo home run accounted for the only scoring
in the game.
"Oh, man, dynamic pitching on both sides all day," Royals manager Ned Yost
said. "Sale was phenomenal, James Shields was phenomenal. The difference in
the game was one high changeup. That was it."
Shields has faced the Phillies twice and is 1-0 with a 6.55 ERA against them.
Philadelphia stunned Kansas City on Saturday, as pinch-hitter Kevin Frandsen's
three-run double in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted the Phillies past
the Royals, 4-3.
Holding a 3-1 lead, Kansas City sent Greg Holland (0-1) to the mound to close
out the game. Instead, the right-hander walked the first three batters he
faced -- Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Michael Young. He briefly rebounded by
striking out Domonic Brown and John Mayberry.
However, Frandsen then came off the bench and drilled a fastball to right-
center field, clearing the bases for the come-from-behind victory.
"You can't walk the bases loaded. At some point, you've got to command the
strike zone," Holland said.
Ben Revere had an RBI for the Phillies, who had just three hits. John Lannan
lasted seven innings in his Philadelphia debut, allowing three runs on five
hits while striking out five. Antonio Bastardo (1-0) tossed a scoreless ninth
to pick up the win.
"You don't want to start 0-2 at home, especially in front of these fans with
the energy they bring," Frandsen said.
Miguel Tejada knocked in two runs for the Royals, who won 13-4 in the opener
on Friday. Elliot Johnson added an RBI.
Kansas City last visited Citizens Bank Park back in 2004 when the Phils took
two of three.
The Sports Network