Utley making progress in rehab assignment

2nd baseman's return could lead to less playing time for Hernandez

Utley making progress in rehab assignment

PHILADELPHIA -- The man leading the Phillies in on-base percentage might soon have far fewer chances to get on.

Six-time All-Star and four-time Silver Slugger Award winner Chase Utley has been on the disabled list since June 23 with inflammation in his right ankle, but he made his first rehab start with Triple-A Lehigh Valley on Sunday. Utley went 2-for-3 with a walk, an encouraging sign given that the second baseman reached base three times in just seven of the 65 games he played in the Majors this year.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phils excited about prospects Cordero, Tirado

Hard-throwing righties were acquired from Toronto in the Ben Revere trade

Phils excited about prospects Cordero, Tirado

PHILADELPHIA -- Ken Giles is not the only pitcher in the Phillies' organization that can hit 100 mph with his fastball.

The Phillies on Friday acquired two hard-throwing Minor League pitchers from the Toronto Blue Jays for outfielder Ben Revere: right-handers Jimmy Cordero and Alberto Tirado. Cordero's fastball has hit 102 mph. Tirado's fastball has hit 98.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Herrera's aggressiveness paying off for Phillies

Herrera's aggressiveness paying off for Phillies

PHILADELPHIA -- Odubel Herrera is the kind of center fielder who is probably going to make a bunch of errors.

But that's what makes him so exciting.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies can't rally past Braves

Phillies can't rally past Braves

PHILADELPHIA -- Jace Peterson's three-run home run in the fifth inning gave the Braves the lead and they never looked back in Sunday's 6-2 victory over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, preventing the sweep and ending Atlanta's six-game losing streak.

Peterson's home run came two at-bats after Chris Johnson tied the score, 1-1, with a single that scored Cameron Maybin. The four runs in the fifth inning provided enough cushion for starting pitcher Julio Teheran to silence the hot offense of the Phillies. Teheran allowed two runs in seven innings, striking out seven and walking none. The effort was good enough to provide him his first road win since Opening Day.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Listen to his podcast. Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Williams, Phillies welcome back Rollins

Williams, Phillies welcome back Rollins

Jimmy Rollins played 1,047 games in Philadelphia wearing red and white. Tuesday he'll make his first appearance in blue.

Traded to the Dodgers in the offseason, the player with the most hits, most doubles and third-most runs scored in Phillies history will return to Philadelphia as a visiting player when the Phillies host the Dodgers for the first contest of a three-game series.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Facing the best, brings out best in Phils' bats

Bats have come alive after facing Greinke, Kershaw and Bumgarner over three-day span

Facing the best, brings out best in Phils' bats

PHILADELPHIA -- A few weeks ago the Phillies were struggling mightily. Between June 24 and July 7, the team went 3-10 and dropped to 28 games below .500. Then things got even tougher.

Over a three-day span, the team faced All-Star starting pitchers Zack Greinke, Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner back-to-back-to-back. The Phillies lost all three games by a combined score of 26-2 and struck out 31 times.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Howard's hot streak helping to carry Phillies

Howard's hot streak helping to carry Phillies

PHILADELPHIA -- Hitting is contagious. If that wasn't a tired baseball aphorism before, Ryan Howard and Pete Mackanin sure made it one.

"Guys are going up there having good at-bats all the way around," Howard said. "Hitting is contagious so to speak."

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies score 12 unanswered in win over Braves

Phillies score 12 unanswered in win over Braves

PHILADELPHIA -- Cameron Rupp and Freddy Galvis each drilled three-run homers to provide Aaron Nola more than enough support as he bounced back from a rough first inning to lead the surging Phillies to a 12-2 win over the Braves on Saturday night at Citizens Bank Park.

Rupp's fourth-inning home run off Matt Wisler's first-pitch slider provided the Phillies a lead they would not relinquish on the way to improving to 12-2 since the All-Star break. Nola surrendered Nick Markakis' third career leadoff home run during a two-run first inning and then ended his five-inning performance with four consecutive scoreless innings.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Listen to his podcast. Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies willing to be patient with Harrison

Phillies willing to be patient with Harrison

PHILADELPHIA -- For a team building toward a bright future, the Phillies acquired a player with a recent history that has been marred by injury.

Through trades over the past week, the Phillies acquired young players who now occupy Nos. 3, 4, 5, 13, 14, 15 and 24 in their prospect rankings in exchange for veterans like Cole Hamels, Jonathan Papelbon and Ben Revere who didn't factor into the future as the organization envisions it. But also included in the bounty was one player who doesn't quite fit in with the cohort of young, high-upside players headed to Philadelphia: Matt Harrison.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Scouting profile: Aaron Nola

Phillies prospect is ready to make an impact in the Major Leagues

Scouting profile: Aaron Nola

Background
Aaron Nola caught the attention of scouts while he was still at Catholic High School in Baton Rouge, La.

The right-handed starting pitcher was named the 2011 Class 5A State Player of the Year and was voted the state's "Mr. Baseball." His efforts earned him a selection in the 22nd round of the '11 Draft. However, instead of signing with the Toronto Blue Jays, Nola chose to attend Louisiana State University.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Paul Hagen

Looking back at Hamels' stellar Phillies career

Looking back at Hamels' stellar Phillies career

PHILADELPHIA -- The walls of the home manager's office at Citizens Bank Park are dotted by pictures of special players and moments from Phillies history. The photo that hangs closest to the desk was taken on the night of Oct. 29, 2008.

The Phillies had just beaten the Rays to win the World Series. On the left is first baseman Ryan Howard, holding the trophy. On the right is Cole Hamels, clutching the Most Valuable Player award. In the background is the red sports car he received for winning it.

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Paul Hagen is a national columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Howard helps Phillies knock off Braves

Howard helps Phillies knock off Braves

PHILADELPHIA -- With all the moves that happened in Philadelphia on Friday, it might've been hard to remember that the team still had a game to play. But from the way the Phillies played, the trades didn't seem to affect them.

The Philadelphia offense erupted for nine runs and 11 hits in their 9-3 victory over the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park. The offense started early with the first five Phillies to come to the plate all reaching base and four of them scoring. From there the offense didn't relent. The win was the Phillies' 11th in 13 games since the All-Star break, continuing the hot streak that has accounted for more than a quarter of the team's wins this season.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Listen to his podcast. Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Paul Hagen

Deadline haul a significant step for Phillies

Deadline haul a significant step for Phillies

PHILADELPHIA -- The whispers were loud, persistent and anonymous. The Phillies were asking too much, way too much, for their big-ticket items. As good as Cole Hamels and Jonathan Papelbon were, there was no way they were worth the can't-miss prospects from the farm system of whichever team was being rumored to be most interested at the moment.

Or so the innuendo went. It could have been nothing more than a calculated, covert attempt to drive down the price on both pitchers. It forced a denial from the Phils.

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Paul Hagen is a national columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burrell inducted onto Phillies' Wall of Fame

Burrell inducted onto Phillies' Wall of Fame

PHILADELPHIA -- Pat Burrell's wit spared no one.

He mocked his closest friends. He picked on his former managers, juxtaposing the even-keeled Charlie Manuel against the quick-tempered Larry Bowa. He even joked about the sometimes fractured relationship between him and the media.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Buchanan's confidence continues to blossom

Buchanan's confidence continues to blossom

PHILADELPHIA -- David Buchanan isn't the kind of player who gets accused of loafing.

"I get kind of yelled at sometimes, 'Take it easy, don't try to blow anything out trying to get to first base,'" he said. "But that's just the competitive nature in myself. I'm not going to hit a ground ball and not try to beat it out."

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hamels' trade to Texas is complete

Phillies get lefty Harrison, five prospects

Hamels' trade to Texas is complete

PHILADELPHIA -- Cole Hamels said farewell Friday to Philadelphia.

He had a heck of a 13-year run. It began in 2002, when the Phillies made him the 17th overall pick in the Draft. He reached the big leagues in 2006 with plenty of fanfare. He earned the National League Championship Series and World Series Most Valuable Player Awards in 2008, when the Phillies won their second championship in franchise history. He was part of a nearly storybook season in 2011, when he joined Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt in a memorable rotation.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phils pick up pair of pitching prospects for Revere

Righties Tirado, Cordero headed to Philadelphia from Blue Jays

Phils pick up pair of pitching prospects for Revere

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies acquired right-handed pitching prospects Alberto Tirado and Jimmy Cordero from the Blue Jays on Friday afternoon for outfielder Ben Revere in a move completed just prior to the 4 p.m. ET non-waiver Trade Deadline.

Tirado, who slots in as the Phils' No. 15 prospect according to MLBPipeline.com, is a 20-year-old who has transitioned into the bullpen over the past few years. He joined the Blue Jays' organization in 2012 as a 17-year-old starting pitcher. Tirado has spent this season at Class A Advanced Dunedin, where he's 4-3 with a 3.23 ERA in 31 appearances.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies might not be done making moves

Utley, Harang, Francoeur could be traded before Aug. 31 wavier Trade Deadline

Phillies might not be done making moves

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies might not be finished making trades.

They could trade Chase Utley, Aaron Harang, Jeff Francoeur and others before the Aug. 31 waiver Trade Deadline. Utley has received interest from teams, although he is on the disabled list with an injured right ankle.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ruiz, Phillies take series opener from Braves

Ruiz, Phillies take series opener from Braves

PHILADELPHIA -- Aaron Harang and Shelby Miller came into Thursday night's Braves-Phillies game a combined 0-14 since May 17. Harang broke his streak. Miller didn't.

Harang threw five innings in his first start since July 1 -- when he went on the disabled list with plantar fasciitis -- in the Phillies' 4-1 win at Citizens Bank Park. The winning decision for Harang ended a streak of eight straight starts in which he registered the losing decision and nine straight winless starts in total. He allowed just one run despite the nine hits he surrendered and struck out three.

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Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Listen to his podcast. Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Harang stepping up as veteran leader of rotation

Harang stepping up as veteran leader of rotation

PHILADELPHIA -- David Buchanan is 26. Adam Morgan is 25. Aaron Nola is 22. And then there's Aaron Harang.

With word of Cole Hamels' trade to the Rangers expected to come Friday, the Phillies' clubhouse is losing more than just an ace; it's losing a veteran presence to help guide the new guard of Philadelphia starters in times of confusion. Enter Harang.

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Nick Suss is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies ready to celebrate alumni weekend

Phillies ready to celebrate alumni weekend

PHILADELPHIA -- It is unlikely Cole Hamels will stick around for the Phillies' alumni weekend.

But the Phillies have plenty planned without him.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Prospects in Hamels deal give Phils bright future

Philadelphia gains talent on horizon in returns from blockbuster deal

Prospects in Hamels deal give Phils bright future

The Phillies have waited and waited and waited to get the best deal possible for Cole Hamels, one that could help restock an organization thin on talent in the Majors and Minors. They finally did so on Friday, consummating an eight-player deal with the Rangers.

Philadelphia sent Hamels, Jake Diekman and $9.5 million in cash to Texas for Matt Harrison and five prospects: right-handers Jake Thompson, Jerad Eickhoff and Alec Asher, outfielder Nick Williams and catcher Jorge Alfaro.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies lack punch as Williams labors vs. Jays

Phillies lack punch as Williams labors vs. Jays

TORONTO -- Troy Tulowitzki made the most of his Blue Jays debut Wednesday, cracking a homer while collecting a pair of doubles in an 8-2 win over the Phillies at Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays' newest star collected three hits with three RBIs and three runs scored as Toronto split the two-game set.

Making his first career start in a leadoff role, Tulowitzki, acquired in a trade with the Rockies on Tuesday, made his presence felt in the third, when he went deep with a two-run shot off Philly starter Jerome Williams to spot the Blue Jays an early 2-0 lead. He was at it again in the fifth, when he laced a leadoff double to left field before Jose Bautista cashed him in with a one-out single. Tulowitzki hit an RBI double off the wall in his next at-bat as part of a three-run sixth, and he finished 3-for-5.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Paul Hagen

Phillies Mural to honor club's rich history

McShane: 'Remember how we're connected as a community'

Phillies Mural to honor club's rich history

PHILADELPHIA -- Once again, Tug McGraw is jumping into the sky, celebrating the first World Series championship in Phillies history.

Only this time, McGraw is doing it eight stories high. And he's joined by dozens of iconic faces and moments and even the ballparks from franchise history on a spectacular 3,750-square-foot mural located at 24th and Walnut Street, and visible from the Schuylkill River Trail and I-76.

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Paul Hagen is a national columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies acquire Pivetta from Nats for Papelbon

Double-A righty ranked as Philly's No. 10 prospect, could project as middle-rotation asset

Phillies acquire Pivetta from Nats for Papelbon

TORONTO -- Jonathan Papelbon finally got his wish.

The Phillies announced Tuesday night they had traded Papelbon and cash considerations to the Nationals for Double-A right-hander Nick Pivetta, ending Papelbon's tumultuous Phillies career without the trips to the postseason he expected when he signed a four-year, $50 million contract in November 2011. MLBPipeline.com ranks Pivetta as the Phillies' No. 10 prospect.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giles overcomes nerves for save in new role

Phillies' anointed closer earns second career save, first since replacing traded Papelbon

Giles overcomes nerves for save in new role

TORONTO -- Ken Giles seemed destined to pitch the ninth inning in a save situation Tuesday night, right?

Less than an hour after the Phillies announced they had traded Jonathan Papelbon and cash considerations to the Nationals for Double-A right-hander Nick Pivetta, Giles picked up the save in a 3-2 victory over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

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Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phillies slug past Blue Jays for comeback win

Phillies slug past Blue Jays for comeback win

TORONTO -- Ken Giles settled into his newly minted role as closer on Tuesday, helping the Phillies seal a 3-2 win over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

Hours after former closer Jonathan Papelbon was traded to the Nationals, Giles came on to protect a one-run lead and threw a scoreless ninth inning as Philadelphia took the opener of a two-game set. After allowing a leadoff single to Edwin Encarnacion, Giles retired Chris Colabello and Russell Martin on flyouts before Danny Valencia grounded into a forceout to end the game. It was Giles' first save of the season and the second of his career.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Howard hits ball off his leg, ends up with single

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Howard hits ball off his leg, ends up with single

MLB rules stipulate that "A foul ball is a batted ball ... that, while on or over foul territory, touches the person of an umpire or player, or any object foreign to the natural ground." Apparently there's also a little-known addendum stipulating that the above is true "unless you're a ninja who can sneakily will the ball off of his leg, in which case go ahead and take first base." Either that, or Ryan Howard is an Animorph who can transform from human into the natural ground

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