If Cole Hamels is traded to the Cardinals making a popular rumor come true, his best pitching may be yet to come.
Hamels is 108-83 with a 3.27 ERA after nine season in Major League Baseball. They're admirable numbers on their face. But Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park is one of the most notoriously hitter-friendly venues in baseball. He would likely fare better at St. Louis' Busch stadium which has proved to be very fair for hitters and pitchers.
In a small statistical sample, Hamels has a .203 batting average against at Busch Stadium with 133 plate appearances against him. He's got a .234 career batting average against in Philadelphia. Hitters slug .297 against him in St. Louis, compared to .386 in Philly.
On a larger scale, Hamels' numbers are remarkably similar home and away. He's won the same amount of games on the road as at home, 54, and is within one in wins and losses, 42 defeats at home against 41 on the road. He's got a 3.28 career home ERA against 3.27 on the road. On its face it doesn't seem like it makes a difference where he pitches. But, since most teams usually play better at home than on the road a pitcher's statistics are usually going to be better, too. So there is certainly room for improvement playing at a more statistically neutral home field.
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The biggest difference in his home and away splits is that Hamels has surrendered 110 homers in Philadelphia against 90 on the road in a nearly identical amount of innings.
While his Busch Stadium numbers are depressed, it's not a sign that the lefty has had the Cardinals' number. He's actually 2-4 against St. Louis over the course of his career.
Against other National League Central teams Hamels has been dominant.
VS Cubs: 3-1 with a 2.40 ERA
VS Reds: 9-0 with a 1.51 ERA
VS Milwaukee: 7-3, with a 3.70 ERA
VS Pittsburgh: 2-2 with a 2.76 ERA