MILWAUKEE - He hasn't been here long, but Cole Hamels is already making waves with the Cubs.
Hamels is 4-0 with a 1.00 ERA in seven starts for the North Siders and was just named the National League Pitcher of the Month.
But his neighbors to the north might not be his biggest fans. Hamels laid into the Brew Crew faithful Monday after his first taste of "Wrigley North."
"When you have majority Cubs fans in the stands, I don’t know if that’s a rivalry, yet. I’ve been in rivalries. They’re not going to like me for the comment, but you can look at the ticket sales. When they get a little bite closer and their fans sell out, then I think that's the understanding."
"I really think we're spending way too much time trying to classify rivalries. Like, enjoy the baseball games, man." noted Brewers manager Craig Counsell in response to Hamels' comments. "If you're not enjoying the game last night - I'm sorry Cubs fans, I know it didn't turn out the way you wanted - that's a great baseball game."
"Rivalries are normally created by fan bases, too I think. I know the proximity is there," remarked Cubs skipper Joe Maddon. "Legitimately, the Cardinals and the Cubs have created that. I've been involved in it in the past in different organization, Dodgers and Angels. It's a different feeling. You can go back to your high school days. You know what that feels like. He's right. It was a great game. Both teams are playing well. It's something that can really build into something over time, I believe. You just can't create a rivalry by writing that it is. It has to be felt. It has to be proven over time."
After Tuesday, the Cubs and Brewers still have four games left in the regular season slate, including three more at the Friendly Confines.