PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- If there's one person who knows what it's like to play a World Series at Citizens Bank Park, it's Cole Hamels.
If there's one person who knows what it's like to pitch in a rain-delayed World Series at Citizens Bank Park, it's Cole Hamels.
If there's one person who knows what it's like to win the World Series in Citizens Bank Park, it's Cole Hamels.
The 2008 World Series MVP was back in the city of Brotherly Love to take part in an event for the Philadelphia Athletic League but took a moment to talk about the team of destiny, the 2022 Phillies that's looking to win the first championship since Hamels and the 2008 squad did it.
Game 3 of the World Series was postponed due to rain on Monday night. It will resume on Tuesday.
In '08, the clinching Game 5 took three days to play. The Phillies and Tampa Bay were tied when the game was suspended. Then they waited a day for the rain to pass. The Phillies won the World Series the next day.
"It does bring back memories. This type of weather. Very similar. It's special just to be in the World Series. It is nerve-wracking. So when you do have something that postpones, I mean sometimes it's good and bad. Because you're excited with the anticipation to play, but also having a postponement can you give you a step back to appreciate where you are for a couple minutes and then go back in with a great mindset," Hamels said.
"I think it's going to be great for the guys and this city can get even more excited. Because I know today is going to be absolutely loud and crazy. To see it now from a different perspective, not on the field, I'm really excited to be able to do that and especially with a lot of teammates that are here. So this is going to be fun for us to take part in and watch."
Hamels was selected 17th overall by the Phillies in the 2002 MLB Draft. He remained a Phillie until he was traded to the Texas Rangers in 2015. He would go on to be part of the Chicago Cubs, Atlanta Braves and Los Angles Dodgers clubs.
But it's Philadelphia that is close to his heart.
"Being able to play in Philadelphia, and understand what the community means, what the fans mean, you don't understand that when you're not present and when you can feel it, it's being expressed over the last couple weeks here, the excitement - and I think the players understand it," Hamels said.
"That's something that's very hard to describe to players until they finally get to see it. The city of Philadelphia, they love their sports. They are behind you and it does catapult you to playing to a level that you never anticipate."
Hamels is proud of the team that has been dancing on their own throughout the postseason, but says the fans play a big part in their success.
"(The players have) been resilient all year. They got hot at the right time. I think that's what you really look for is guys coming together, being able to do what they intend to do and handing it over to the next guy to pick them up. Being able to do it in front of the stadium, the intensity that these fans bring - that's the true excitement," Hamels said.
"We're very fortunate to play the game of baseball, but the reason we play it is for the fans, is for people to be able to watch, just incredible entertainment. I think these players see it and they're feeling it."
"I've been in their shoes so I'm just happy they get to experience it too."
Hamels may have been born in California and nicknamed "Hollywood," but he embraced the community when he played here, donating to the School District of Philadelphia through his Hamels Foundation.
Hamels was in attendance as MLB and the Phillies announced a $50,000 grant to PAL.
"Being here for so long, you start to realize what the culture is and how important is sports, being off the streets, having something to be able to look forward to after school," Hamels said.
"I've always been a big believer in trying to provide good opportunities for kids because there are always people that are thinking about them, there's always hope, but you have to be able to express that and be able to show it. I think this right here today really does show that there's an importance behind their future. Giving them the tools to be able to achieve their dreams, creating good realities and just really progressing in life."
For a kid born across the country, Hamels says he had opportunities and is hoping with the donations from MLB and the Phillies others in this city will as well.
"I was very fortunate to be able to have fields to play sports, neighborhoods to be able to do so, and having parents that really looked out after us. When you have that community involvement that's what can create the best sort of path for success," Hamels said.
Game 3 of the World Series is scheduled for 8:03 p.m. Tuesday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.