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Cole Hamels may be an ace, but he's also a distraction

Cole Hamels has been the story so far in training camp.Getty Images

The turning point for Cole Hamels with the media was after his “I can’t wait for it to end. It’s been mentally draining” lines during the 2009 World Series was taken out of context.

Hamels went on to note that he hoped to start a Game 7 of that series after a disappointing performance in Game 3. There was no Game 7 in the series since Yankees won in six, andHamels has been a bit of an enigma with the media ever since. The Phillies homegrown ace will usually only meet the press every five days and that always isn’t so. And then sometimes Hamels surprises the media with accessibility.

Hamels took many aback when he told USA Today that winning is “not going to happen here.”

Cliff Lee, who aced his media relations course, followed Hamels, like the Phillies hope in the rotation, with optimism.

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Even the Phillies loosest canon, Jonathan Papelbon, said that anything can happen. Can the Phillies, who many pundits and oddsmakers view as the worst team in baseball, shock the world? Probably not but Hamels, who is signed off on a $144 million deal, has made this awkward camp even more uncomfortable.

“I don’t have a problem with Cole,” Ruben Amaro told USA Today. “But maybe he could have chosen his words a little differently.”

Yes, it’s a very different spring for the Phillies, who are in a odd position. An expensive team with little hope. But everyone is tied for first at the moment. What will happen during the course of the next four weeks? Wiill Hamels be able to hold his tongue? Stay tuned.

 
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