How Cole Hamels Found Resurgence Just in Time for Cubs
Pitcher that seemed to be on downward trajectory finds new life in Chicago.
At the time the Chicago Cubs acquired Hamels from the Texas Rangers before the waiver trade deadline, they could not possibly have imagined he would become their de facto ace.
Having (mis)spent $126 million on Yu Darvish, who struggled with a 4.95 ERA before being shut down by injuries, and endured disappointing seasons from the top of their rotation, Jon Lester and Jose Quintana, the Cubs desperately needed someone to pitch in.
And Hamels may have won a World Series for the Philadelphia Phillies 10 years ago, but he is 34-years old and clearly seemed to be on the decline in Texas. He posted a 4.72 ERA, though did manage 114 strikeouts in 114.1 innings, and was available for the bargain-basement price of a couple of minor league arms and a player to be named later.
Then he got to Chicago, and after six starts he’s 4-0 with an 0.69 ERA.
“No one expects Hamels to maintain a sub-1.00 ERA over the long haul. But he’s not that far removed from success, either,” writes The Bleacher Report‘s Jacob Shafer. “He was an All-Star who eclipsed 200 innings as recently as 2016. Now, he’s turning back the clock.
“The Cubbies needed him. He needed the Cubbies. Sometimes, these things just work out.”
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