Hamels told FOX MLB reporter Ken Rosenthal that he contracted poison oak while fishing on teammate Roy Oswalt’s property in Missouri during the team’s June 20th off-day.
What was pitching with poison oak on both legs like?
“It felt like razor blades on the back of my legs every time I’d take a step,” Hamels said.
The Phillies lost in both starts despite Hamels pitching well. He gave up two runs over eight innings in a 4-1 loss to the A’s on June 25th and he departed after four scoreless innings five days later against the Red Sox. Hamels had to leave that start early after getting hit on the hand by a line drive.
In a star-studded rotation featuring Cy Young winners Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee, Hamels has stood out this season. He’s gone 10-4 with a 2.40 ERA and a league-leading 0.95 WHIP. It’s the type of season Hamels needed to re-establish himself as an ace, and the type of courage he needed to show to prove his toughness to his teammates.
And now Hamels joins these two pitchers as guys who have pitched through tough maladies this season.