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Game 50: Statement time for Hamels

Cole Hamels looks to rebound in a critical rubber match for the Phillies.

WASHINGTON -- Shortly after the Phillies 5-3 win over the Washington Nationals on Saturday night, manager Charlie Manuel was asked if the win was especially important since they were facing Stephen Strasburg in today's series finale at Nationals Park.

"We have Hamels," Manuel replied.

At the beginning of the season that would have been looked on as positive for the Phillies. However, Hamels is 1-7 with a 4.45 ERA. Strasburg is just 2-5 but he has a 2.66 ERA.

"Hamels is due to win a game, man," Manuel said. "That's a bright spot."

We'll see.

"Hamels is going to let it go (Sunday)," Manuel said. "Like I said, Hamels is capable of winning every time he goes out there."

Hamels has allowed two earned runs or fewer in five of his last six starts. He hasn't received much run support. The Phillies have scored just 20 runs while Hamels is in the game this season (62 2/3 innings). Hamels has not pitched with a lead since April 7 against Kansas City.

Ryan Howard, who struck out four times in Saturday's win is not in today's lineup. Kevin Frandsen gets the start at first base.

Here is today's Phillies lineup,

1.Jimmy Rollins, SS

2. Freddy Galvis, 2B

3. Michael Young, 3B

4. Delmon Young, RF

5. Domonic Brown, LF

6. Kevin Frandsen, 1B

7. Ben Revere, CF

8. Humberto Quintero, C

9. Cole Hamels, P