Cole Hamels is the Rangers’ nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, which MLB gives annually to the player who displays “extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.”
Hamels has both covered. He and his wife, Heidi, established The Hamels Foundation in 2009 with the goal of improving education in Malawi, Africa, Missouri, Philadelphia and Dallas-Fort Worth.
Hamels is getting the recognition he said that his wife deserves.
“It would not get to where it is if it was just relying on me,” Hamels said. “It would never be able to get to where it is if I didn’t have a person like her to entrust that things get done.”
The Rangers, though, need Hamels like he needs his wife’s help with the foundation. He returns to the mound Wednesday in the finale at SunTrust Park, where the Rangers will continue to try and chip away at their wild-card deficit.
Hamels has had a bumpy past four starts, with a 6.45 ERA. The Rangers are 3-1 in those games, and he is 9-2 in 18 starts this season. He also loves pitching in September with something on the line.
“You want to know you at least have that opportunity,” Hamels said. “We put in a lot of work in the off-season, in spring training, and the goal is always the same: It’s to get to the postseason and get to the postseason.
“To still have that belief and to be able to maintain that day in and day out right now in September creates excitement. We really believe in each other, and it’s a matter of going out there and getting the job done each day.”
Hamels is 27-14 with a 3.29 ERA in September in his career.