Hamels leaves to be with pregnant wife
After exiting game, lefty awaits arrival of first child
PHILADELPHIA -- Cole Hamels grew excited over the past couple of weeks as the birth of his first child grew nearer. But first, the Phillies left-hander had to remain focused on the opportunity to reintroduce himself to the October euphoria that he helped create in Philadelphia last year.
Hamels' debut in this year's postseason proved to be somewhat forgettable as he allowed four runs and lasted just five innings during the 5-4 win the Rockies claimed in Game 2 of the National League Division Series at Citizens Bank Park on Thursday afternoon.
But the 25-year-old will always remember that shortly after exiting this outing, he was told that his wife, Heidi, had gone into labor.
During the seventh inning, the Phillies announced that Hamels had left the stadium to be with his wife at a nearby hospital. As of late Thursday night, it hadn't been revealed whether his wife had delivered their son and it remains unknown when the hurler might rejoin his teammates.
|Gm. 1||PHI 5, COL 1||Wrap||Video|
|Gm. 2||COL 5, PHI 4||Wrap||Video|
|Gm. 3||PHI 6, COL 5||Wrap||Video|
|Gm. 4||PHI 5, COL 4||Wrap||Video|
"That's got be pretty interesting," Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins said. "A lot of things going on. There's baseball, but there's the birth of your first born child. That definitely takes precedent."
After dominating last year's postseason by going 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA, Hamels didn't begin this year's playoffs in the same magical manner. The Rockies scored a first-inning run against him while depositing just one of his pitches into the outfield and he made a costly mistake with a hanging curveball that Yorvit Torrealba transformed into a two-run, fourth-inning homer.
"I know he was concerned about his wife and probably his child, too," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "That's an exciting time and a time that you look forward to. I know it probably was on his mind."
With his spot in the lineup coming up and his team facing a 4-0 deficit in the fifth inning, Hamels was removed for a pinch-hitter. A short time later, Frank Coppenbarger, the club's director of team travel and clubhouse services, came to the dugout to tell the left-hander that his wife had gone into labor.
"I think it would have been in [my head]," Rollins said. "Maybe not when he was on the mound, but when he was coming in. He probably had somebody sitting on his phone to check to see if there were any updates. But we're professionals. We find a way through it."
Hamels likely wouldn't pitch again unless the series goes the distance and there's a need to play Game 5 on Tuesday at Citizens Bank Park.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.