Cole Hamels won't be ready for Phillies Opening Day

Cole Hamels won't be ready for Phillies Opening Day
February 12, 2014, 12:00 pm
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2014 spring training for the Philadelphia Phillies has opened with some unfortunate news. Ace Cole Hamels has reported behind schedule in his throwing program due to shoulder tendinitis.

Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly says the lefty will not be ready Opening Day, despite otherwise feeling good physically.

Hamels is one of the Phillies' best players and will be central to any success they have this season. At 30 he's also on the younger side of their most important guys. Heading into the year the Phillies will hope Ryan Howard and Chase Utley can stay healthy, now there is concern involving their relatively young ace.

Hamels recovered after a slow start to the 2013 season to go 8-14 with a 3.60 ERA. He's pitched at least 208 innings in five of his last six seasons.

Hamels told CSN Philly he expects to return some time in April, but given there are now questions surrounding him, at this point it would make sense if they reconsider signing another free agent like A.J. Burnett.

[UPDATE: Phillies sign pitcher A.J. Burnett]