Colbert Michael Hamels
Dec 27, 1983 in San Diego, CA
6' 3" (1.9 m)
192 lbs (87 kg)
Amanda and Gary Hamels
Caleb Michael Hamels, Braxton Grady Hamels and Reeve Kenean Hamels
Rancho Bernardo H.S.
4-seam fastball, circle changeup, curveball, cut fastball
Colbert Michael Hamels (Cole) was born on December 27, 1983 in San Diego, California to his parents Amanda and Gary Hamels. Cole is the oldest of three children and has sister named Jillian and a brother named Mitchell.
Cole's father introduced him to both soccer and baseball in which he excelled in both during his youth. Cole's sports heroes during this time were local favorites Tony Gwynn and Ken Griffy Jr., along with United States soccer stars Alexie Lalas and Colby Jones. Cole played both little league and youth soccer, but it wasn't until he was 10 years old that he competed in a local travel soccer team that played competitively throughout southern California. Also, during this time, he joined an AAU baseball team and traveled throughout San Diego to compete in local tournaments. (Cole played centerfield and pitched during this time).
|High School Pitching Statistics|
|1999 (Freshman Team)|
|Injured - Did Not Play|
Cole attended Rancho Bernardo High School. It wasn't until High School that Cole realized he wanted to pursue only baseball and more importantly only pitching. Cole's passion for pitching, soon allowed what were once childhood dreams to become a reality in making it professionally in baseball. In 1999, Rancho Bernardo's Varsity Team was ranked the number one best baseball team in the Nation by Baseball America and USA Today.
In 2000, both Baseball America and USA Today again ranked the team number one. Cole made the Varsity team as the number two starter. The team finished the 2000 season as National Champions.
The summer before his junior year, Cole broke his left humerus while pitching in Varsity Summer Ball (An injury that has only happened to approximately two other professional baseball players). Since no-one had successfully come back from an injury such as this, Cole sought after the San Diego Padres doctor (Dr. Jan Froenick) to repair his arm in hopes that he would play again. He later rehabbed with Tom House and the National Pitching Association, which led to a healthy comeback for his senior year of High School.
In 2002, he was picked as the number one starter for the Rancho Bernardo Varsity Team.
According to Tony Gwynn, lots of scouts were interested in Hamels while he was pitching for RBHS because his fastball was clocked as high as 94 mph. However, he broke his arm in his junior year, so some teams, like the San Diego Padres lost interest. Nonetheless, Hamels was drafted in the first round of the 2002 baseball draft by the Phillies (17th overall).
Hamels began his professional baseball career in 2003, pitching at Single-A Lakewood. Later that season, he was promoted to Class-A Advanced Clearwater. After the 2003 season, Hamels received the Paul Owens Award as the best pitcher in the Phillies' minor league system.
In 2006, Hamels started again at Clearwater, and after a brief stint at Double-A Reading was sent to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where in just three games, he struck out 36 batters while giving up only one walk and one run. His minor league totals were 14–4, with 273 strikeouts in 35 games pitched.
Hamels was called up to the Phillies in May 2006. In his MLB debut on May 12, he pitched five scoreless innings in which he allowed only one hit, striking out seven batters and walking five. He earned a no-decision against the Cincinnati Reds when reliever Ryan Madson gave up a 2-run lead. In his second career start, Hamels was dominant until the seventh inning, in which he was pulled after he allowed several base-runners, but again received a no-decision. A shoulder injury scratched Hamels from the lineup of what would have originally been his third major league start. He was put on the 15-day disabled list and returned on June 6 to defeat the Arizona Diamondbacks 10-1, for his first Major League victory. On August 14, 2006, Hamels had his best start of his rookie campaign, shutting out the New York Mets over eight innings and striking out nine in the 13-0 victory.
Hamels met Heidi Strobel (2004) when she threw out a first pitch at a Clearwater Baseball game. Strobel was on CBS's "Survivor the Amazon" and because of this it was Cole who got in Heidi's autograph line at the baseball park. They were married on New Year's Eve of 2006 in her home-town of Springfield, Missouri.
On April 21, 2007, Hamels struck out 15 Reds in his first career complete game. On May 16, 2007 he carried a perfect game into the 7th inning, where he walked leadoff man Rickie Weeks and then surrendered a home run to the next batter, J. J. Hardy. He struck out 11 batters in a no decision over the Milwaukee Brewers. On June 12, 2007, Hamels went eight innings to become the first National League pitcher of the season to win nine games.
On July 1, 2007, he was named to the NL All Star Team for the first time. On August 22, Hamels was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a mild left elbow strain. On September 28, he pitched the Phillies into first place by striking out 13 Washington Nationals over 8 innings in a 6–0 win (The Phillies became the NL East Champions 3 days later).
Hamels finished with an impressive regular-season record of 15–5. The Philadelphia chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America presented him the "Steve Carlton Most Valuable Pitcher" award.
Hamels led the Phillies throughout the first month of the season in most pitching categories, including wins (3), ERA (2.70), and innings pitched (43.3). Continuing his dominance into May, Hamels recorded his first career complete game shutout against the Atlanta Braves on the 15th of that month. The very next game against the Washington Nationals, Hamels went 7 scoreless innings before he was pulled (allowing him to go 19 scoreless innings in a row). Less than one month later, Hamels followed his dominating performance with a repeat of that complete game, beating the Cincinnati Reds, 5-0 on June 5. Though the Phillies were a picture of inconsistency through June, posting a long streak of wins followed by a prolonged team-wide slump, Hamels posted a 3–1 record and a 2.61 ERA in the month.
For the season, Hamels was 14-10 with a 3.09 ERA; he had the lowest OBP-against in the majors, .272. He was also judged as having the most effective changeup in the majors. Hamels pitched in Game 1 of the National League Division Series against the Brewers, pitching eight strong innings and striking out nine while notching his first career playoff win. He was named the MVP of the National League Championship Series, going 2-0 in the NLCS with a 1.93 ERA, winning the series clincher on October 15 in Los Angeles. He also recorded the win in Game 1 of the World Series, surrendering two runs in seven innings of work. Overall, Hamels made five postseason starts in 2008, going 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA.
Hamels was named Most Valuable Player of the World Series, making him only the fifth player to win two post-season MVP awards in the same year. The New York chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) likewise chose him as the World Series MVP, presenting him the Babe Ruth Award. The Philadelphia chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America presented him the "Steve Carlton Most Valuable Pitcher" award for the second consecutive year.
Hamels started his 2009 season by signing a 3-year, $20.5 million deal with the Phillies.
Hamels posted a 10-11 record and a 4.32 ERA in the regular season, his first major league season in which he posted a sub-.500 record, and the worst ERA of his career to that point. However, Hamels' strikeout, walk, line drive, ground ball and fly ball rates all remained similar, while his home run rate saw an increase of .01 home runs allowed per nine innings pitched. Hamels's fielding-independent pitching also remained the same from 2008 to 2009 at 3.72. Hamels started the second game of the 2009 National League Division Series, allowing four earned runs through five innings to take the loss. The Phillies, however, won the series, three games to one. Hamels earned the win in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series, as the Phillies beat the Dodgers, 8-6. Hamels started Game 3 of the World Series against the New York Yankees, pitching 4.3 innings, allowing 5 earned runs and taking the loss.
For Cole's role in the community, the Phillies did nominate him as the Roberto Clemente nominee on behalf of Philadelphia. He was also nominated for an Espy for Best Championship Performance and The All Star Kids award .
In his second year of his new contract with the Phillies, Cole posted a 12-11 record with an impressive 3.06 ERA, which was the lowest in his career to date. In the beginning of 2010, Hamels learned to throw a cut-fastball (cutter) with the help of teammate, pitcher, Roy Halladay. Throughout the season, Hamels appeared to have more success when using all of his pitches. While using his new acquired pitch, he struck out a career high 211 batters while keeping hitters off balance allowing opposing players to hit only .237.
Unfortunately, he did not receive much run support throughout the year. Cole lost a few games when allowing only one or two runs. Even with minimal run support, Hamels kept up his dominance and helped lead the Phillies to an MLB-best record of 97-65 and their fourth consecutive NL East Division Championship.
In the playoffs, Hamels continued his success. He started Game 3 of the 2010 National League Division Series against the Reds and went on to pitch a complete game shutout only allowing 5 hits. The Phillies advanced to the National League Championship Series, where Hamels was recorded with the loss in Game 3 against the Giants.
Cole Hamels had his best year as a professional athlete in 2011. His ERA was a career low 2.79, and this was in large part to mastering his cut fastball. He used all of his pitches very effectively such as the fastball, curveball, cutter, and his great change-up. Cole also recorded 3 complete games, which was a career high.
He received some high-ranking awards and was selected to represent the National League in the All-Star Game in Arizona. He was unable to pitch in the All-Star game due to pitching the Sunday before. Cole got the win in his only start of the postseason going 6 innings allowing 0 runs, while striking out 8 and walking 3.
Cole ended up going 14-9 with a 2.79 ERA, along with 194 strikeouts to only 44 walks, and 3 complete games in the regular season. He received the 16th worst run support in the MLB, but was still voted 5th in the Cy Young Award race. Cole attributes his great year to being able to throw all four of his pitches confidently for strikes. The Cy Young Award could come to fruition in 2012, if his statistics keep trending upward.
In January, Cole signed a one-year contract that avoided going to arbitration, but also meant that he could become a free agent at the end of the season. However, in July 2012, the Philadelphia Phillies signed Cole to a long-term contract (6 years and $144 million, with an option for a seventh year) that will keep him in Phillies pinstripes through the 2018 season. Cole and Heidi were eager to stay in Philadelphia for the long-term and the fans were a large part of their decision to stay. “Words can’t really describe the emotions that you get, and the way the fans were standing and cheering, that was ultimately the deciding point to be here,” Cole said.
2012 was a strong year for Cole, even though the Phillies struggled as a team. The Phillies finished the season at .500 (81-81) and ended their 5-year playoff run as well as their grip on the National League East. However, Cole posted career bests in both wins (17) and strikeouts (216) and his second lowest ERA (3.05). Cole was named to his 2nd straight (3rd overall) All-Star Game in Kansas City, MO and pitched a scoreless 7th inning after retiring the side. Cole also experienced a career-first….his first home run! Cole hammered one off of San Francisco Giant’s pitcher Matt Cain, who ironically, had homered off of Cole earlier in the game.
Cole was awarded the Steve Carlton Most Valuable Pitcher Award by the Philadelphia chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America. This honor is awarded to the Philadelphia Phillies Most Valuable Pitcher during the season and Cole is the only pitcher to have received this honor more than once (he won the same award in 2007 and 2008).