Cole Hamels admits that he hit Bryce Harper with a pitch intentionally

You make the call: Should Cole Hamels be suspended for hitting Bryce Harper with a pitch?

5/7/12 in MLB   |   Pat   |   5234 respect

May 1, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels (35) and catcher Carlos Ruiz (51) talk on the mound against the Atlanta Braves during the third inning at Turner Field. The Phillies defeated the Braves 4-2.  Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-US PRESSWIREBaseball players get hit with pitches on a pretty regular basis. Some, like Craig Biggio and Kevin Youkilis, seem to make a career of it.

Last night, when Cole Hamels hit Bryce Harper with a pitch, however, it was a little different.

Mostly because Hamels admitted after the game that it was intentional.

"I was trying to hit him. I'm not going to deny it. It's something I grew up watching. That's what happened. I'm just trying to continue the old baseball. Some people get away from it. I remember when I was a rookie, the strike zone was really, really small and you didn't say anything. That's the way baseball is. Sometimes the league is protecting certain players. It's that old-school prestigious way of baseball. I'm not going to injure a guy. They're probably not going to like me for it but I'm not going to lie and say I wasn't trying to do it. I think they understood the message and they threw it right back. That's the way, and I respect it. They can say whatever they want."

That statement might result in a suspension for Hamels.

It's one thing to slip up, and have an inside pitch get away from you. It's an entirely different story when you intentionally drill a guy, and then admit it after the game.

May 5, 2012; Washington, D.C., USA; Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper (34) in the on-deck circle during the third inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-US PRESSWIREEven if Hamels gets suspended, will it matter? I've already wrote that I believe the MLB suspension system is broken for starting pitchers, and a 5-game suspension (normal for something like this) is a completely pointless punishment.

That having been said, if MLB does the right thing and suspends Hamels for 10 games, which would actually make him miss a start, it would be a confirmation that they ARE protecting certain players (uber-prospect Harper, in this case).

Personally, I say suspend Hamels for 7-10 games. It has to be at least 7 games, because anything less than that for a starting pitcher isn't even a suspension, it's just pushing their start back by one or two games.

Also, I love the old-school style of play as much as anyone, but Hamels had no reason to go after Harper here. And (bias alert!) Harper's on my fantasy team in my keeper league, so I don't play around with that at all.

What do you think? Should Cole Hamels be suspended for intentionally throwing at Harper? And if so, how long should his suspension be?
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5/10/12   |   ASLEEP1020   |   71 respect

As a big Phillies and Cole Hammels fan, I would love to say "no, that's old school baseball". Sorry, that's Yankee, Red Sox crap. We're the Phillies and we're better than that. Baring any unforeseen "accidents", this guy, Bryce Harper is going to be a big deal someday. Next time you want to welcome somebody to the majors, buy them a cake. He should have got 2 weeks off.

5/8/12   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

Five game suspension for a starting pitcher = 24 hour delay of his next start.

If they said a pitcher has to miss five STARTS, then they'll stop drilling people with pitches for idiotic reasons.

5/8/12   |   Debi_L   |   11868 respect

Nope.  I'm sure a lot of pitchers intentionally hit the batter, but they would never own up to it.  Hammels did and I give him kudos for doing so, but he could have just kept his mouth shut and no one would have been any the wiser.  Take a look at hockey, football, soccer and there are a lot of intentional hits, and a lot that are intended to injure.  Hammels wasn't trying to injure, just "welcome" Harper to the big leagues.

5/7/12   |   scquwi1   |   1232 respect

No it matters big time going for the head or the body.  Anytime you play a sport, something could end your career, if we are going to cry about it we should get rid of the pitcher and just have machine do their job. Hell Halladay was hit by a shot of the bat of Ike Davis in to nights game, that is far worse then Hamel's hitting Harper. Lets just get rid of the baseballs too, and they can use the softball that high schools use in the north when it is to could to  play baseball out doors so they do it in the gym. Silly to say it does not matter because one could get away from a pitcher..... EVERY pitch has to  chance to get away. Again tha5t is why they made it to the majors and stay there because 90% of the time the get the ball where they want, those that cannot do that do not stay there in the majors to long.

5/7/12   |   The_Real_Stoney   |   25649 respect

Should Hamels be suspended? Nope.. But he will be, because of the fragile society that we live in

5/7/12   |   w_g_walters   |   223 respect

Try to take someone out, get taken out. That's how it is, that's how it should be. It doesn't matter if it was at the head or not, the fact is, he could have caused serious injury, possibly career-ending if it got away from him and did go at his head.

5/7/12   |   bulldawgxl   |   4605 respect

Wow, I really don't know if the intentional hit should be overlooked tho. Nothing against getting a guy off his mojo by going inside at all. I agree with that. If ya keep going down the middle or outside, you can't really use what you are given as a pitcher. You are gonna get booboo's in ANY sport, yes, occasionally a pitch is gonna get ya. I think the world would look at it differently had it not been soooo intentional tho.

5/7/12   |   scquwi1   |   1232 respect

No way should he be suspended, he was not going at the head of Harper. I loved that Hammels went at Harper, it brings me back to what baseball should be. The Kid is hot and Hammels is showing him I have no issue throwing inside and hitting you. Welcome to the big leagues. Get these pansies out of baseball who think we need to take the inside pitch away, and punish these pitchers who go out and hit a batter in the back. Again I am not saying we should allow them to throw at the head, but I have issue with the back or lower of a batter.