According to various MLB sources, the Philadelphia Philliesand general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. are ready to offer star southpaw Cole Hamels a six-year, $130 million deal to keep him in the City of Brotherly Love.
Talks between the two sides have been going on for months now, but they seemed far apart. If Hamels is not traded or signed during the next two months or so, he will hit an unrestricted free agent market that will outbid the Phillies in even the best-case scenario. Hamels is just that valuable; the man leads all Phillies pitchers with a 10-4 record, 3.07 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 124 strikeouts in 125 innings.
The other two aces on the staff—Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee—are paid more than him, but they’ve combined to go 5-11 with a combined ERA of 3.93.
Losing Hamels for nothing in free agency is Philadelphia’s worst-case scenario, so retaining their star of the future or trading him for a couple of valuable pieces will most likely be what happens over the next two weeks. Potential trade destinations could be Los Angeles, Texas, or even Pittsburgh. The Pirates have a loaded farm system that could possibly compensate the Phils fairly.
Until then, all Hamels can do is wait and pitch like he’s been pitching.
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