Much ado has been made of the notion that Jamie Moyer's acquisition was good for Cole Hamels' development. Comcast's John Marzano has discussed it on Post Game Live, ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick wrote a column about it (although I can't read it because it's an "Insider" piece), and it's been mentioned by Ken Mandel of Phillies.com, including a quote from Hamels himself:
The intangibles Gillick spoke of referred to the veteran leadership that Moyer provided on the four days between starts. He was often seen huddled with Randy Wolf or Cole Hamels with a baseball in his hand, and they typically weren't discussing the weather.
"He showed me that you don't have to throw 95 miles an hour to get somebody out," Hamels said in September. "He's told me a lot of things. It's amazing that he's still doing what he's doing."
That's all well and good, but The Good Phight is about, among other things, not taking things for granted. So let's look closer.
Proponents of this theory will point to Hamels' stats before and after the August 19 trade for Moyer (all numbers courtesy of Dave Pinto's fantastic Day-by-Day Database): 4.50 ERA, 1.26 WHIP before, 3.35 ERA, 1.22 WHIP after. But wait a minute: the trade wasn't announced until after the completion of Hamels' start on that date, in which he went 6 innings, giving up 2 ER, 5 H and 1 BB. So the correct pre- and post-Moyer numbers are actually as follows:
Before Moyer (5/12 - 8/19): 4.40 ERA, 1.24 WHIP
After Moyer (8/24 - 9/27): 3.40 ERA, 1.25 WHIP
So now the difference is smaller, but still significant, at least in terms of ERA: Hamels' allowed one full earned run per nine innings fewer under Jamie's tutelage than he did before.
But maybe Hamels was actually improving before Moyer arrived. If so, this might be missed in the above comparison.
It turns out that Hamels' 2006 ERA hit its high point after his July 24th start, in which he was lit up for 7 ER in 5 1/3 innings. In his next five starts prior to Moyer's arrival (including the 8/19 start), King Cole went off: 1.83 ERA and 0.84 WHIP over 34 1/3 innings. So, perhaps the more meaningful comparison would be between these numbers and his post-Moyer performance. It turns out that Hamels was on a big-time hot streak leading up to Moyer joining the team, and his subsequent numbers were actually worse.
At any rate, it appears, talking heads' comments and Hamels' own lip service to the contrary, that Moyer didn't help Hamels at all.