- ZiPS projection – 3.0 WAR
- Over/Under – Push
Upon first glance, 3.0 WAR may seem like a low projection for someone who was an All-Star a season ago. His beard by itself may be enough to give him at least 3.5 WAR. However, given last season and his career trajectory to this point, 3.0 WAR may be the perfect projection for Cole Hamels.
Hamels’ career has been a model of consistency. He’s pitched 200+ innings every season since 2010 and from 2011-2015 did not produce lower than 4.0 WAR. Up until September, Hamels was pitching like a Cy Young candidate.
A rough September put a damper on what was otherwise a great campaign from Cole. His 5.86 ERA during the month stood out compared to the rest of his season. While the .355 BABIP points to Hamels being a bit unlucky, 42 percent of balls put in play were hit hard which points to possible fatigue.
Could it be possible that September was a sign of things to come? Hamels will be 33 years old heading into 2017 which is not a friendly age for pitchers. 3.0 WAR is a fair projection for Hamels, and if Darvish can stay healthy it will be a great one-two punch.
Prediction – 3.0 WAR