Gone, but not forgotten: A look back at some of Cole Hamels' greatest moments in Philly
It looks to be official: After 13 years in the Phillies organization, Cole Hamels will reportedly be a Texas Ranger after a blockbuster deal on Wednesday night. Hamels was Philly's first-round draft pick way back in 2002, and after a few years tearing up the Minors, the lefty would quickly establish himself as one of the best pitchers in franchise history -- all while maintaining some truly glorious hair.
And so, while we're sure there are many more memories to come in Texas, we thought it only fitting to look back at some of the greatest (and weirdest) moments of Hamels' time in the City of Brotherly Love.
The entire 2008 postseason
Sure, Hamels had already established himself as one of the best starters in baseball by the time the 2008 postseason rolled around, but once the calendar flipped to October, he quickly transformed from "very good pitcher" to "unstoppable flamethrowing monster."
Hamels was handed the ball for Game 1 of the NLDS against Milwaukee, and all he did was fire eight innings of two-hit ball with nine K's:
After the Phillies won that series in four, Hamels was back on the mound for another Game 1, this time facing a powerful Dodgers lineup in the first NLCS in Philly since 1993. His response: seven innings, two runs, eight strikeouts:
Oh, he then followed that up with seven strong innings in Dodger Stadium to close out the series and earn himself NLCS MVP. He followed that up by dominating the Rays over two starts in the World Series -- including the deciding Game 6 in front of the home crowd:
Sure, being named World Series MVP is nice, but it's arguably not even as cool as ...
When he flew to New York by helicopter to read the Top 10 List for David Letterman
According to Hamels himself, he basically didn't sleep for 48 hours -- after wrapping up the party after the series-clinching Game 6 victory, he got a call from CBS -- "The Late Show" was offering to fly him from Philly to New York by helicopter for a taping. And, given MLB's long and illustrious history with the Top 10 List, he couldn't say no:
He gave up a home run to Matt Cain, then responded by hitting a home run off of Matt Cain
Cole Hamels has hit just one home run in 691 career plate appearances, but hey, you can't say the guy didn't get his money's worth. While pitching against the Giants on July 21, 2012, Hamels gave up a home run to counterpart Matt Cain. And apparently, the shame of getting taken deep by a pitcher was enough to make him go Super Saiyan, because in the very next half-inning, this happened:
He has the back of his coaching staff
Never let it be said that Hamels isn't a loyal teammate. While catching coach Mick Billmeyer was being interviewed in the dugout during a game at Fenway, the lefty had his back, making sure that no enemy fans would even think about trying any funny business:
He ruled over the citizens/mascots of Philadelphia with a hot dog cannon
The tale of Cole Hamels and the Hog Dog Cannon is a saga in two acts.
Act I, in 2013: Wherein a mustachioed Hamels and his teammate Cliff Lee commandeer the Phanatic's weaponry and use it to bombard Citizens Bank Park:
Act II, a year later: Wherein the hot dog cannon breaks, and the pitchers resort to just flinging hot dogs at the Phanatic:
Pray for any hot dog-phobic residents of North Texas.
That time he trolled the world by pretending he'd been traded
As this non-waiver Trade Deadline has proven, the baseball world can be a very jumpy place around this time of year. So, having listened to trade rumors swirling all season, Hamels decided to have a little fun at the media's expense -- taking his name plate off and emptying his locker after a game in June. It worked better than he could have hoped:
Cole Hamels locker is empty.- jon johnson (@jonjohnsonwip) June 18, 2015
Thankfully, the gag was revealed soon after, and everyone commenced breathing again.
And, of course, the no-hitter
With the July 31 deadline looming and the Phillies in Chicago to face the Cubs, what would their longtime ace do as a possible parting gift? Well, he went and threw a no-hitter, of course:
Good luck in Texas, Cole, and thanks for all the awesome moments. Just, um, give the Phanatic a minute. He needs to process his feelings: